by Guest Blogger Vicki Windman We are
always looking for tools to help special-needs children learn more effectively, so as to reduce the frustration level felt
when they can not be independent or do not understand.
has become such a tool, with over 10,000,000 apps in the Apple Store. The question is, where do you begin to look
for the apps you need for your child? It
takes a lot of time and research, but it can be done. Hopefully, this list will be the beginning of
a process that will enable your child to feel successful and increase his or
Calendar apps - I
personally like CalenGoo. It is $6.99.
It syncs with Google Calendar, is color-coded and allows more than one
calendar. It also has picture icons so I
can see what I am doing and a to-do list. If you want
to spend less, Calvetica
is $2.99. It also syncs with Google apps,
offers color coding and has alarms.
Agenda apps - InClass was rated Best App for young adults
2011. It is an organizer, allows users
to take photo, audio or text notes,
keeps tasks for the day in one place with course alarms.
Taking Notes - Notes Plus- Users can handwrite notes, type notes and record
notes. You can also set up a folder for
Typing papers - Dragon is a dictation program that allows
users to dictate while it records. Speak It is another program which plays back users' typed-in
words so they can hear their mistakes.
My area of
expertise is working with the Developmentally Disabled. I have spent most of my time exploring apps
to enhance communication skills, basic math skills, reading and spelling
skills, and finally life skills.
Best App: Proloquo2Go. It is expensive but well worth the investment
if you have a student who does not have speech or has difficulty-answering WH
questions. It is a PECS (Picture
Exchange Communication System), which can be customized for the child.
Story Builder is a WH app that records the
child’s voice when answering questions.
It can be leveled based upon the child’s needs.
IQuestion is a game in
which the student answers WH questions. You can focus on just one or make it
random. It also has the ability to be
Look Cars is a basic app that has the student look into the
eyes of the picture. The student has to
identify the number.
Kindergarten.com has a wide variety of Autism Apps
from Emotions to What Does not Belong. It is
an excellent site and resource.
There are 6
different topics with videos for students to watch that are social and life
skills. Everyday Skills videos include using a
restroom to waiting in line. Survival Signs and Words have videos
ranging from Automatic Door to Beware of Dog.
Bills and Coins also can be leveled. It has counting money making change, show the
In Make Change, students have to figure
out the amount of money and drag it on the IPad
works on the four operations. It can also be leveled for each child.
Kids Math is great for students who still need visuals to help
them add and subtract.
Jungle Time is a telling time app using an
recognition- for emergent readers
Analogy – is a picture analogy helping students learn
Spell Blocks uses the Dolch spelling words and
can be leveled from Pre Primer to third grade
Pocket phonic- is for students who are just
learning their letter sounds and can trace the letter to enhance the
Mee Genius is a wonderful beginning bookshelf
of twelve stories. The story is read to the
student and words are highlighted. Users
can add to the collection at the bookstore provided on the app.
Teach me- you can have up to four students. You can keep
track of their progress, and it's also leveled. It combines both math and
The list goes
on and on, but these are the apps that I am using and having success with. I am constantly looking for new apps to
enhance the skills we are working on. I love that
ability to individualize apps for students learning goals. It is a wonderful reinforcer that
accomplishes what students need to learn in a positive, productive manner.
Vicki Windman is a special education teacher at Clarkstown High School South