iPad Apps for Autism

Recently I was asked if I were able to put together a list of apps that are brilliant for children diagnosed with Autism. Of course, I immediately agreed to try and think of the list of my top 5 and get back to them. Of course, I couldn't. Although I did manage to narrow it down to 8!

Do you know how hard that was?! It's unbelievable how many fantastic apps there are out there for our kiddos to be able to learn from, this post I am going to concentrate on the apps that can help our kiddos to continue learning through use of the iPad. You will be amazed how many hours this took to put together, because I just couldn't decide what my top 5 apps were - there's so much choice now! So I hope you enjoy my top 8, oops hehe!. Let me know if you have one that you think is an amazing app for our kiddos that I haven't mentioned!

Please note, that as I am based within the UK I am unsure how many of these are available on the US iTunes store, I'm hoping most will be similar, if not i'm open to any similar suggestions from readers so that I can add these for US families.

1. Proloquo 2 go


Ok, this is a little pricey, but hear me out first!
Hands up if you have or know an autistic child who is non verbal? 
Who struggles to communicate? 

This app is amazing. There are just so many possibilities to use it I just really don't know where to start with it all! There are also lots of manuals available all around the web that are free to download to help you set it up and get the best use out of it too! 

So, one of the best things you can do is categorise the symbols for different things, i.e. you can have a file for home, school, snack, dinner, eating out, choice etc. you get the picture. 

Once you have set up the category you can add all the different symbols, for example let's say breakfast. You want to be careful here if your child gets angry if they request something you don't have there at the time - it's easy to delete and re-add symbols so don't worry you can add new ones when you have something different available and delete one if you don't have it in. The children can push the symbols and the iPad will read it out loud! Giving them a voice!!

Children are also very carefully and will probably spend time exploring it, as they do! They can build sentences, practise spelling, read out letters and numbers. It's great, it really does give the children a voice, you can add as many symbols as you like and it can be used for everything! 

It comes with three different vocabulary options; British, American or Australian! This app is also used within Schools too, it's great to help students stay focused, improve their communication, improve their language, help them transition through the day, promote their independence and give them the opportunity for choice; something a lot of our children may miss out on because they may not be able to respond to choice by word but may if they can see symbols.

You can even take your own pictures to add to the symbols if you want it to be something specific! 

Find more information here.

2. Tiny Tap


You'll be glad to hear this is a free app, and although there's the opportunity to purchase activities inside it, there are also lots of free options!

We stumbled across this in our classroom this year, it's a big hit with the kids and so many learning opportunities! Basically teachers/educators around the world create educational games/interactive books it's fabulous! One of our kids favourites is called Monster Love. It's free and the kids love it! The story is read aloud by the game and there's lots of rhyming! It's a fun, quirky and cute little book that the kids just love! There's different activities for different age groups and all different subjects math, geography etc. 

Find more information here or here.

3. Book Creator


This is a £3.99 app but there is also a free version for you to be able to try out before you purchase the full version. We love using this app! Basically it's all about being able to create books!

We use it for evidence or reflection activities. It is quite easy to work too and many of our children are happy to sit and make books on their own all day long!

You can use photos from the web, from your camera etc. It's great. You can add text, record your voice so that it talks back to you, add videos, stickers, change backgrounds, you name it and you can pretty much do it on this app!

Once finished you can also export it to a PDF! Send it to your computer and get it printed out! A great keepsake! It will also encourage reflection, children can flick through the books and try to recall what happened, they can look at pictures and try to make a story about them, trying to remember what they did, what the picture is about, what they can see etc.

For more information click here.

4. Choiceworks



So, this one I am still getting to grips with, it's a recent one that I've started using, but so far it's fabulous and great for at home, school, wherever! It's a bargain at just £4.99!

You can create a schedule for your children to be able to follow, it will help them transition, improve independence and they will be prepared for what is coming next - no nasty surprises! Once they finish a part of their schedule they can check it off to the completed section too!

There is also the waiting/timer option where they can have a visual for the countdown and when they will be finished waiting - great for those times when you know there's going to be a 10 minute wait for something or even if you need a quick 2 minutes to do something! It also offers the choices at the bottom for what they can do while they wait!

There is also a feelings option, I haven't quite got around to mastering this yet but from what I can make out of it, it basically offers children choices of what they can do when they feel a certain way, it also offers incentives of choice activities at the bottom if they are able to calm they can get those!

All in all, a great app! Especially when out and about or on the move!

Find out more information here.

5. Social Stories Creator


Here's another free app that I recently come across. This is great for social stories - as the name would suggest! They even have the option available for you to be able to print out the stories! 

But - if you don't have the time to make stories, they do have some ready made stories available for you! There is also an option available here to be able to make visual schedules - I have yet to use this feature but have been told it's great!

Find out more information here.

6. PocketPhonics


This is another really popular app with our kiddos, they love being able to trace all the different letters! The app also sounds out different letters, children can be encouraged to copy these if they are verbal, we have also had some non verbal children who can sound out some of the letters - this has been rare, but has happened. It also teaches spelling, it sounds out the letters, the word at the end, shows a picture, encourages students to spell the word, find out the missing letter - which the app sounds out for them, you can even set up so that they earn achievements/rewards to keep track of progress  It's great for letter recognition, tracing, fine motor skills, listening, letter sounds, building words etc.

The list of opportunities that this app is endless, it does cost £4.99 but I think we can all agree it's one of those that is most definitely worth the money!

You can find out more information here.


7. Preschool All In One


This app I have only so far downloaded the free version, there is also a paid version, but for now I am quite happy to keep going with the free option. 

This is everything you could hope for, especially for all around learning. It's bright, fun, interactive, inviting, and child friendly. There is no time limit to pressure children into completing quickly, however once they complete activities there is the option for them to receive stickers as rewards!

It's very interactive so kiddos love it - as you can imagine! There are lots of different activities which are led by a little monkey in a train. 

This can be; completing patterns, matching toys to shadows, counting blocks and matching the correct number (matching), touching toys that start with certain letter. 

Although you can complete the free version fairly quickly, it's still great to have as a time filler and to encourage quick learning time! Children can also make the children that their monkey drives around it, making that bit more personal. It's great to be able to check your child likes it before purchasing the full version.

You can find more information here.

8. ToDo Math


This is also a free app with the opportunity to purchase the full version. I still have the free version so will discuss that. 
Each day there is a mission with different learning activities included, you can also enter what type of learning you want; kindergarten prep, kindergarten practice, 1st grade prep or 1st grade practice. 

Kiddos will love the daily challenges and collecting the monster at the end of it! It's lots of fun, bright and interesting so will be sure to grasp their attention!

There is so much to do in this app, it's great !! 

Check out more information on it here.

Nikki 

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