Sue’s Top Apps for students with autism spectrum disorder


The iPad/iPod technology is continuing to grow and become a part of our kid’s daily life. Many families have purchased an iPad and many classrooms have at least one iPad if not more for their students. The app market continues to grow. To date, there are over 425,000 apps! I have continued my search for the best apps to use in my work with children with special needs. Below is my current favorite list of apps that for my students diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder. These apps have been chosen because they address the hallmark weakness of kids on the spectrum, are engaging, well attended to, and include realistic images and sounds. Many are also low priced or Free, I love Free.
  • For teaching emotions: Voila Friends, ABA Emotions, Touch Emotion and MoodyMonster, I was So Mad
  • For Sound Discrimination: Biggest Sounds HD, Noise Room, Things You Can Hear, Sounds and What Was That Noise?
  • To address receptive vocabulary: Photo Touch apps and My First 1000 Words by, apps, Word Slapps and SeeTouchLearn .
  • To teach following directions: Move Like Me, TallyTots, AlphaTots, Making Sequences
  • For early literacy, site words and spelling skills: I Like Books and Little Spellers from, WordWizard, iWriteWords, FirstWords:Deluxe, Word Wagon, Winnie the Pooh puzzle book, There’s a Monster at the End of this Book
  • For creativity: Drawing Pad, Learning to Draw is Fun, CookieDoodle, Toca Tea Party, ClickySticky, My PlayHome, and createAmonster
  • In addition to these great apps, there are two fun apps that help kids talk about and experience two very difficult activities- getting a haircut and going to the doctor. Toca Hair Salon and Toca Doctor are so cute. The actions kids can perform and sound effects make the app truly multisensory. It is a great way to rehearse and prepare for those two challenging tasks. Also see the story app Little Bunny Visiting the Dentist and Brush It Up to open the discussion about going to the dentist.
  • If you need a kid safe way to search for images in your iPad, try FotoFarm. It completely screens images and has a simple interface. With this app, I can search with confidence and not have to worry about anything inappropriate popping up. Warning- it is not 100% full proof.

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