Let’s face it. Technology is here to stay. Additionally, many of our kids with special needs gravitate towards technology. Why not put that to good use? I asked some other special needs homeschooling moms to tell me their favorite apps, both for education and coping with challenges. Here’s what they came up with. Many of the ladies who gave suggestions also have blogs, so have fun clicking over to their blogs via the links at their names.
Future Horizons created a great resource for parents, teachers, and caregivers of children with autism. If your child has difficulty with communication or is young, this book is even more helpful for you. It’s called Apps for Autism – Revised and Expanded: An Essential Guide to Over 200 Effective Apps! (I was given the original version for review. I have not seen the updated version, but the original was chock full.)
My favorite educational app so far is Stack the States (Apple store here). It helped my boys learn the US states and capitals. It is worth the money. WARNING: Stack the Countries was too overwhelming and both boys cried.
When you poke around Bible Gateway (Apple store here) you’ll be surprised it’s free! My boys enjoy using the audio feature. I love that you can switch between a slew of translations. There’s much more packed into this app.
All About Learning Press (Creators of my favorite reading and spelling curriculum) have created two free apps–one for little learners to learn the sounds of the alphabet and one for other children to learn the seventy-two phonograms.
Jeri recommends the Starfall site and their app. There is a membership. They have learning fun for preschool through first grade, plus second grade math. Jeri says her kids have learned a lot. Mary likes the free Starfall app and says it’s less overwhelming.
Shandi likes Red Apple Reading (Apple store.) She says, “It is adjustable to your childs reading level, and has 4 different packages. It is a membership, but it has been worth it for my son, with Autism. It is made up of games, so he can relate to it, and it fits into the way we homeschool. I will have a full review up soon, at www.mamadews.com.”
Lori loves Mod Math*. It’s an app for kids with dyslexia and dysgraphia. They use it in place of pencil and paper.
Nicole recommends Letter School. Nicole explains, “Letter school for writing uppercase, lowercase, and numbers. Phenomenal app. The only thing that taught my son how to write letters after years of trying. It won’t let them write it the wrong way which is what he needed most.”
Audobon Bird Guide: North America (Apple store) comes recommended by Danielle. Her son enjoys the bird calls. When you see the features, you’ll be surprised it’s free. Danielle also loves Fry Words Pro* for sight words, Story Creator* for writing/journaling, Toontastic* for retelling, Seterra for geography (Windows version here), and Bible Songs: Sing Along with Noah*.
Apps to Help with Special Needs Challenges
Says Rosie, “I love SnapType*. If your kid has stamina, fine motor (writing) issues just photograph the worksheet and they can type out the answers. You can then email the photo or print in other formats like PDF. Excellent for slow writers who can’t focus on writing and answering at the same time”
What’s Today app*, recommended by Danielle, helps kids learn about calendars and scheduling. Danielle also loves Small Talk Motor Oral Motor Exercises*, and I Spy with Lola for visual tracking (Apple store).
Penny put together a list of Apple apps for kids with autism and she also gives you tips on the best time to buy.
Over at Sharkey Support Services, Mandi has a list of iPad apps, along with what the apps can be used for.
Theresa is looking for help! She says, “Does your Aspie/Autistic go mute when they meltdown? What about outbursts? We have developed an app to help them and their caregivers communicate in difficult times. It’s under construction and we will need beta testers soon. Please like the Facebook page and respond to notifications as we’ll post announcements as we go.”
Now it’s your turn! Do you have an app to share? What app has helped your child with special needs learn or overcome a challenge? Leave a comment.
If you’re new to special needs homeschooling and missed Gabriella Volpe’s post “7 Things to Expect Your First Year Homeschooling a Child with Special Needs“, click on over to read it. It will save you frustration!
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