Archive for the ‘app’ Category

FREE app + PDF with 8 pages of FREE printables to target Core Vocabulary, Articulation & Rhyming (created by Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, OMazing Kids)

FREE app + PDF with 8 pages of FREE printables to target Core Vocabulary, Articulation & Rhyming

This fun FREE app has lots of opportunities to target core words (I, me, you, not, help, that, find, little, see, look, there, do, open) and directional words (up, down, left, right) as you slide the tabs in the story. Also lots of great rhyming words (bear, square, pear, tear, chair, stair, hair, fair, flare, mare, there, everywhere) that could also be used as articulation targets for kids working on vocalic -air words.

I made 8 pages of free printables to go with the app:

  • response recording form for vocalic -air articulation
  • Core Vocabulary target pages for AAC:
    – LAMP Words for Life
    – Proloquo2go
    – Speak for Yourself
    – Talk Suite Pro
    – TouchChat HD with WordPower
    – Avaz
    – one without symbols

Each of these AAC apps has a symbol finder feature so be sure to use that to become familiar with where these words are located before using this activity.

These Core Vocabulary target pages are intended to be used as a visual reminder of words to target while using an AAC app on one device and the free “Where Is My Little Square Bear?” app on a separate device.

I made these free printables on my iPad using screenshots from free manual boards and/or that AAC app and a template and SymbolStix symbols in the iESLp app (https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ieslp/id912953895, iOS 8.3 or later, $19.99 – such an amazing value with all the templates and SymbolStix symbols included. Pay once… no subscription required).

Get the FREE printables: https://omazingkidsyoga.files.wordpress.com/2020/07/22where-is-my-little-square-bear22-free-printables-created-by-angela-moorad-ms-ccc-slp-omazing-kids.pdf

Get the FREE app:

iOS: Where Is My Little Square Bear? by Eli Hooper, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/where-is-my-little-square-bear/id1200609756, iOS Universal, iOS 7.0 or later

Android: Where Is My Little Square Bear? by Eli Hooper, https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.zoneoutapps.squarebearAndroid
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Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC
Facebook: https://bit.ly/2Si6k7Y
AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amoorad1/
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com

Free and Affordable Symbol-Based AAC apps for iOS – iPad and iPhone, Android – Google Play and Amazon, Windows, Web Browsers plus how to find Open Source Symbols – list compiled by Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, OMazing Kids

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This post is focusing on Free and Affordable Symbol-Based AAC apps for iOS – iPad and iPhone, Android – Google Play and Amazon, Windows & Web Browsers…plus how to find Open Source Symbols.

If you’ve followed my OMazing Kids blog and social media sites for any length of time you know that I am a strong believer in starting with robust AAC instead of looking for “basic” or “starter” options and working up to something more robust. Under typical circumstances that would still be true… but the COVID-19 / Coronavirus pandemic has led to far less than “typical” circumstances. In many states the AT Lending libraries are either closed or not currently loaning out devices or iPads with AAC apps. In many areas, services are either on hold or being provided remotely via teletherapy.

I’ve seen an increase in posts from parents (or SLPs on behalf of parents) asking about free or affordable symbol-based AAC apps that they can be trying out at home in the midst of these less than ideal circumstances. So I felt compelled to share what I know in a blog post.

I am not implying that a free or inexpensive app is always the ideal way to meet most communication needs. But in the midst of a pandemic you make do with what you have.

You may need to use a combination of several apps and add it to existing communication such as PECS, facial expressions, gestures, vocalizations, etc. That individual can then pick what methods work best for them in any given situation. We all use various modes of communication (words, gestures, emojis, texting, drawing, etc).

Even when choosing a free or affordable AAC app you’ll want to consider the features that will best match that individual’s needs.

  • Free (some have IAPs, one has ads that can be blocked with Airplane Mode): 28 iOS, 9 Google Play Android, 1 Amazon, 1 Windows, 3 web browser
  • Affordable ($14.99 or less): 9 iOS, 3 Google Play, 2 Amazon, 1 Windows, 1 web browser

FYI for iOS apps:  

  • Prices, availability & device/iOS compatibility were all checked in the USA App Store and website links were all working at the time this post was written (3:00pm CST on 7/13/20). Prices may vary outside the USA based on the exchange rate. Apps may not be available in every country.
  • Screenshots and descriptions are based on features available at the time of this post. AAC apps change frequently as updates are released.
  • A few apps have the the ability to link buttons to videos & music. These work best when those are short and saved on that device. Trust me it’s worth the extra effort to save those onto the device to insure they will play immediately and consistently. YouTube videos are notorious for disappearing and you may not always have a WiFi connection. I’ve included emoji icons for film and/or music to indicate that on the main photo collage above and described in detail in the app descriptions below.

  • Unless otherwise indicated, these apps do not include a way to back up / restore programming. That’s not necessarily a deal breaker if programming is simple and would be easy to redo. But if you plan on doing a lot of customizations to an app you’ll want to think about how much it would be worth to you to pay a little bit (or a little more) in order to have a way to back up your work.
  • Some apps have IAPs (in-app purchases) for additional features. So after you have installed those apps and purchased anything that you wanted be sure to adjust the settings on your iPad to prevent unintended purchases.
  • If you decide that a particular app is a good match for that individual and you want to purchase the full version, I always recommend that you do so by purchasing the full version of the app directly in the App Store (if available) vs. upgrading a lite app via IAP. Trust me on this…. I’ve been burned more than once on trying to restore IAPs.
  • Some of these apps may not be available for download on your device if you are not running the minimum required iOS.
  • Many of these apps are “iOS Universal”. Those can be used on an iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch. But you’ll need to consider vision and fine motor skills when using them on smaller devices. A few of the apps on this list are “iPad only”.
  • The app developer website links are included so you can read more about the features.
  • If you truly want a child to learn that they can use an iPad or iPhone to communicate, then they will need to only use that particular device for that purpose. Ideally any other games or videos should be on a separate device. You’ll need to use Guided Access to lock the child into only using the AAC app. When an iPad or iPhone battery gets low it may turn off Guided Access. So be sure you have adjusted settings and have the device in Airplane Mode to prevent deleting apps, making purchases, making in-app purchases, accessing the internet, etc… Adult and older teen AAC users may be better equipped to make choices to navigate in/out of an AAC app to use a tablet for other purposes…. but I have not found that to be true for young children. If given an unlocked iPad or iPhone most would prefer to just watch videos or play with other apps. Locking them into the AAC app is intended to provide them the opportunity to learn the power of communication via AAC.

 

Free and Affordable iOS AAC apps

 

These are all apps that I have used and recommend:

  1. GoTalk NOW LITE by Attainment Company, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/gotalk-now-lite/id953164338, iPad only, iOS 9.0 or later, you can create one communication book with up to five pages, can have 1, 2, 4, 9, 16, 25 or 36 buttons per page, FREE with IAPs for additional voices, additional symbol sets and pre-made communication books. There is no pre-made content included in this free version of the app. When using the free lite version of this app I just use one of the enhanced iOS voices and import my own pictures from the Camera Roll or use the in app option to search the internet for pictures. If I need to use a symbol for a particular button, I’ll either send one to import to that iPad’s Camera Roll via AirDrop or as an attachment in a text message or e-mail or will open up the PDF of a free manual communication board and take a screenshot.

There is not a way to backup programming in this free lite version of the app.

There is not an “official” or consistent way to import a board but I recently stumbled upon a backdoor way to import a single page board. This backdoor method didn’t work consistently but I was able to get a few of the single page boards that I created in GoTalk Now Plus to open up in the free lite app via a copy that was e-mailed or backed up on Google Drive. I was especially excited about being able to do this for the Core Board, a Big Red Round Button with High Contrast Rainbow Video And Upbeat Music for CVI, and a page for the Incredible 5 Point Scale. These all would take quite a bit of time to recreate. I have no idea why it didn’t work on all single page boards or on boards with more than one page (since the free app allows up to 5 pages). It’s too complicated to describe here and may not work for you but if you want to know how I did it feel free to send me a private message on my OMazing Kids Facebook page.

 

This is by far my favorite free lite AAC app due to it being fully functional, very easy to program, the ability to resize pictures within the button and have several pics on a button, options for colors on the page background, button background & button border, intuitive to use, the ability to link buttons to videos & music (works best when those are short and saved on that device vs. trying to play YouTube videos), how easy it is to hide/unhide buttons, the option to use recorded speech & text to speech, options for switch and scanning, lots of “settings” options, great in-app manual, can add a keyboard page (and since it uses the iPad iOS keyboard you would have the option of using keyboard extension apps. Exploring alternative keyboards can be a game changer for making typing as a means of AAC accessible. Those apps would require a separate purchase but most are very affordable. Scroll down to that section on this blog post: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2020/05/17/ios-apps-for-early-exploration-of-typing-specialized-keyboards-compiled-by-angela-moorad-ms-ccc-slp-founder-of-omazing-kids/. A couple are specifically for kids but the rest would be helpful for a wide range of ages.), etc…. The app includes a free download of the GoTalk Now Image Library. The app developer does a great job keeping the app updated (Last update: February 2020). At some point in the future it would be nice if they updated the app to be iOS Universal so it could also work on an iPhone. The fact that they offer such a good free lite app is one of the main reasons the paid versions of this app are rarely on sale. I know I am not alone in my love for this app since one of the most frequent requests is from folks wanting to know if there is a free Android app or a free iPhone app like GoTalk NOW LITE. The answer to both of those is “No…. not with all these features.”. There are a few apps that offer the ability to make simple boards (see separate section below) but they are not nearly as full featured as this app. More info: https://www.attainmentcompany.com/gotalk-now-lite.

 

If you feel that GoTalk Now is going to be a good longer term AAC option for that individual, then I recommend considering purchasing the GoTalk Now Plus version of the app since it includes a large library of SymbolStix symbols, one pre-made communication book, you can have an unlimited number of communication books and pages, it includes several higher quality Acapela voices, you have access to their free Online Gallery of templates and items created/shared by others, you have a way to backup/restore programming, etc…. GoTalk NOW PLUS by Attainment Company
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/gotalk-now-plus/id742150885, $169.99. More info: https://www.attainmentcompany.com/gotalk-now-plus).

 

If you don’t want SymbolStix symbols or a premade communication book, then take a look at this version of the app: GoTalk NOW by Attainment Company, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/gotalk-now/id454176457, $99.99. More info: https://www.attainmentcompany.com/gotalk-now.

 

The GoTalk Start version of the app is NOT recommended since you are still limited to one book with 5 pages and don’t have a way to backup programming. I know it looks tempting for $19.99…. but the only thing you get that the free version doesn’t have is more Text to Speech voice options.

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  1. ChatterBoards AAC by Paul Popiel, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/chatterboards-aac/id1133918740, iOS Universal, iOS 10.3 or later. Usually $12.99 -> currently FREE. The app developer does a great job of keeping the app updated. Last update: January 2020.

 

Easy to program, can copy/paste buttons, uses high quality iOS Text to Speech voices with the ability to adjust the rate/pitch/volume or record your own, includes a library of open source symbols and can import or take your own pics. I love that boards can be complex with folders and lots of buttons or they can be very simple (1 huge button that fills almost the entire screen and the whole area can be activated; 2 buttons, 3 buttons, etc.). You can set up “levels” in boards to only show a few buttons at a time and gradually unmask buttons. When you edit it gives you options for the number of rows (1 to 16) x number of columns (1 to 16). You can change the button color and the button border color. It even has a pre-made board with two large Yes/No buttons that can be edited. You can easily toggle back and forth between symbols and a typing board. This app uses its own unique keyboard so keyboard extension apps are not an option.

 

It’s a huge plus that you can easily and reliably backup/restore and share boards. Great for those trying to support a family member or patient remotely. You can e-mail a copy of that board for the family or user to install on their device or for you to install across your own devices. I did that several times today between my iPad & my iPhone and it worked every time & included everything that I programmed (even recorded voice that I did on a board). You can also save and restore from Google Drive. It also showed DropBox as an option but I didn’t try that since I’ve pretty much maxed out my free DropBox account.

 

I just got this app a couple of weeks ago and am seriously LOVING how versatile it is. You’ll see it mentioned in every section of this post for that reason. More info about the app: http://chatterboards-aac.com

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  1. BRIDGE Communication Lite by Bioprism, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/bridge-communication-lite/id983660714, iPad only, iOS 9.3.5 or later, $4.99. A fabulous app at this price! I love the large buttons, that it comes with 1,200 preloaded vocabulary items, phrases & sentences, has SymbolStix symbols on brightly colored buttons, gives visual feedback when an item has been tapped, how easy it is to hide/unhide buttons, the ability to add new buttons using pictures from your Camera Roll, the option to add a video to a button, how easy it is to print pages from within the app, the option to toggle off/on the folder being named, has a good in-app instructions section, etc… The app also has a typing text to speech page that uses the iOS keyboard (but for some reason iOS keyboard extension apps don’t work within the app. That would be on my wishlist for a future app update). SLPs will also be interested in the unique “Articulation” section that can be toggled on/off within the app. It has 2,800 targets. I used it quite a bit and like how they have the targets organized. This app is used with the iPad in “portrait” orientation instead of the more common “landscape” orientation. The app developer does a great job keeping the app updated (Last update: May 2020). At some point in the future it would be nice if they updated the app to be iOS Universal so it could also work on an iPhone. More info: https://gobridgeapp.com.

 

  1. BRIDGE Communication Pro by Bioprism, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/bridge-communication-pro/id1358326786, iPad only, iOS 9.3.5 or later, $9.99. Definitely worth the additional $5.00 in price for all the extra features. Has the same content and features as the lite version + the following extra features: a library of SymbolStix symbols that can be accessed when editing or adding buttons, ability to edit the background color of folders and buttons, ability to add and edit folders and page, ability to add videos to buttons, ability to edit or remove default buttons, folders or pages, ability to back up/recover programming, etc.. It’s a plus that you can easily and reliably backup/restore boards. The backup/recover is done via their server vs. more traditional means (Google Drive, DropBox, AirDrop, e-mail, etc.). They don’t have a limit on how many e-mail accounts you can register within the app so that might be a possible means of doing remote programming. Last update: May 2020. See this chart on their website showing all of the extra features in this version of the app: https://gobridgeapp.com/app-features/

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  1. MyTalkTools Mobile Lite by 2nd Half Enterprises LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/mytalktools-mobile-lite/id376401959, iOS Universal + has some iMessaging capability, iOS 9.3 or later, FREE with IAP for additional features. Includes pre-made content and the ability to add your own. Includes 7 options for a pre-made starter board when setting up a new user: Adult Male lite (165 buttons – can edit any existing buttons but can’t add new ones), Adult Female lite (165 buttons – can edit any existing buttons but can’t add new ones), Child Male lite (130 buttons – can edit any existing buttons but can’t add new ones), Child Female lite (132 buttons – can edit any existing buttons but can’t add new ones), Blank Board (up to 20 buttons – build from scratch), Hospital Rehab (298 buttons – can edit any existing buttons but can’t add new ones) & Basic Starter (has 12 buttons among the linked boards – all can be edited, can add 8 more buttons). The board that you select also determines what voice will be used. Choose “Blank Board” if you want to build your own board or board set from scratch. This version of the app is limited to 20 buttons but those can all be on one board or be on separate linked boards. But if you edit one of the existing Adult or Child lite boards or the Hospital Rehab board you can replace existing items on buttons to have a board that is much larger than 20 buttons. I suggest looking through all the board options by setting up a new user for each board. Then decide which one is closest to what you want to reduce the amount of editing needed. You can layer a universal ‘No’ symbol over any button to show that an item isn’t currently available (the user can still tap the button to request it but the universal ‘No’ is a helpful visual cue). Can add a video to a button. It plays full screen and you can exit the video player before it’s finished. There are quite a few settings options for this app. Go to the Settings area on your device and scroll down to find this app. If you have lots of apps like I do, you’ll need to wait a bit for that app list to fully show up. Last update: February 2019. More info: http://www.mytalktools.com/dnn/2/Home.aspx. The best way to learn about all the features is to read through the very detailed online Users Manual: http://na.createsend1.com/t/d-l-dutuhud-l-t/ (currently 229 pages) and the Quick Start PowerPoint: https://1drv.ms/p/s!Ajwvnq4o_JC4gb5SgwRoKgiNy5Yi7w. I’ve just recently discovered several features that have moved this app way up on my list. It’s not as intuitive as GoTalk Now Lite but has tons to offer for being a free lite app. I especially like the Hospital Rehab board and could see it being quite helpful in the midst of this COVID-19 pandemic. I don’t own a paid version of this app so I cannot comment on whether or not those are worth the price. They offer SLPs free access to their MyTalk Workspace online authoring tool: http://na.createsend1.com/t/d-l-dutjiut-l-o/. There is also an Android version (see list below).

 

The most unique part of this app is the option to use it within iMessaging text messaging and that you can sync your page with the free “workspace” and then sync it with another device. I used a blank template to create a 4 x 5 grid and programmed it with phrases I might typically say when chatting via text message and used screenshots from another AAC app for the symbols. There isn’t a way to string together words to create a sentence within the iMessaging version of the app but a miniature version of the board you created appears in the iMessaging stickers area. Each button you tap is sent as a separate text message and is spoken aloud. If two users were both using this app then they would have a very basic symbol supported means of communicating via text. The LetMeTalk app also has the option to send a message with symbols but it’s done in a quirky way (see info above). The CoughDrop app is the only AAC option that I’ve seen that can send the text and symbols together in a cohesive message via iMessaging and e-mail (see info below).

 

It’s a plus that you can easily and reliably backup/restore boards from their MyTalk Workspace. But there is not a way to share boards with the free version of this app.

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  1. SymboTalk – AAC Talker by Elad Elram, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/symbotalk-aac-talker/id1294023783, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, FREE, has an in-app purchase for Cloud Services: Share, Sync & Backup ($.99 per month). There is not a way to backup/restore programming without subscribing via IAP. Includes pre-made content and the ability to add your own. There are lots of grid size options, option for a high contrast black background, several language options that translate the entire app. Uses open source ARASAAC symbols and when editing you can search for symbols from an online library with more than 60,000 open source symbols including ARASAAC, Mulberry and Sclera. You can also import your own images. The app developer does a good job keeping the app updated. Last update: October 2019. More info: https://www.symbotalk.com. Facebook SymboTalk Users Support Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/symbotalk. YouTube channel playlist with “how to” videos: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLWu0uf__iyiFeEnPIEU9I8zW2HL4lpK0s . There is also an Android version (see list below) and can also be used online. The ability to use an online web-based version looks helpful to SLPs doing therapy via distance learning / teletherapy. Scroll down towards the end of this post for more FREE open source web-based AAC options.

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  1. LetMeTalk by AppNotize UG (haftungsbeschraenkt), https://apps.apple.com/us/app/letmetalk/id919990138, iOS Universal, iOS 8.0 or later, FREE. Includes pre-made content and the ability to add your own. Several language options. Uses open source ARASAAC symbols and when editing you can search for symbols from a library. A message with symbols can be sent via text message and e-mail. The words in the message are in a list when sent via e-mail. When sent via text, the symbols appear one at a time and then the words afterwards. Cool to discover this but still not quite ideal for symbol supported communication via text and e-mail. There are several options for button sizes. The app uses scrolling instead of “next page” buttons when there are more buttons to see than can fit on the screen. The number of buttons that can fit on the screen without needing to scroll will depend on the size setting you choose for the sentence bar, the size of your device’s screen & whether you are using the app in Landscape or Portrait orientation. There is a gap between buttons (can be helpful in preventing misactivations but is wasted screen real estate for those who have a refined ability to touch specific buttons). You can change the border color on buttons but not the background color of the page. The app is pretty easy to program once you play around with it for a bit. There are several unsecured links in the app and the “parental control” setting didn’t do anything so be sure to use this app in Airplane Mode after getting it set up. The app indicates that you can “share” profiles as a way to share pages and back up programming. I was able to send a profile via e-mail and back it up to Google Drive but then was NOT able to open those files on any of my devices. It’s been almost 2 years since the app has been updated so my guess is there must be a glitch…. just something to keep in mind. There isn’t a reliable way to backup/restore programming. Although the app is available on iOS, Google Play & Amazon since it’s not a web-based app you cannot share programming across platforms. Last update: August 2018. More about the app: http://www.letmetalk.info. There are also Android versions – Google Play & Amazon (see list below).

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  1. Alexicom AAC by Alexicom Tech LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/alexicom-aac/id395122088, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, FREE. Includes pre-made content and the ability to add your own. You can create new pages and set the number of rows, number of columns & pic width. FYI…. if you tap on the “info” area and scroll all the way to the bottom there is a list of “pic width” numbers that work best with various combinations of rows & columns. You can use 1 row, 1 column, 600 pic width to have the one large button but the outer portions of that button did not activate when tapped. Only the area taken up by the picture can be activated. I wish there was a way to resize pictures within the button to fill up the whole button or more of the button. The interface takes some getting used to and it always takes me a bit to figure out how to program but once I get going then it’s not too difficult. I highly suggest recording your own speech since the text to speech voice quality isn’t great for buttons that you create. The voice quality is okay in the pre-made content. It may not be the most intuitive app to program or use but it’s one that has been around since 2010 and has a good track record of being updated. It’s reassuring that it’s unlikely that this AAC app will disappear like so many others have over the past few years. The app settings include the option to toggle on iCloud backup but I couldn’t figure out how you restore programming. It would be nice if there was a way to back up to Google Drive or DropBox and to share pages that have been created without needing a subscription. Their website indicates that with an Alexicom Pro subscription you can access all of Alexicom Tech’s AAC page sets, use on-line editing tools, and publish your pages onto any device through the free Alexicom AAC app ($9.99/mo or $96/yr.). I haven’t tried that out so I can’t comment on how well it works. The app developer does a good job keeping the app updated. Last update: December 2019. More info: https://www.alexicomaac.com/#free-app. YouTube tutorial videos: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC2vmcfulDlVvI8cqfCN2MHw. There is also an Android version (see list below). This app developer also has several apps specifically designed for adults in medical situations. Those are all currently free. And they have several “Elements” apps currently priced at $19.99 each. Some include SymbolStix symbols & some include real photos: https://www.alexicomaac.com/#elements-apps.

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  1. Tap Chat | AAC Speech Boards by Apollo Studios, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/tap-chat-aac-speech-boards/id1350503290, iOS Universal, iOS 10.1 or later, basic features are FREE. Includes pre-made content and the ability to make a copy of an existing board and edit the buttons with their symbols or your own picture, edit the text and to record the messages or use text to speech. There are 2 adult and 2 child voices to choose from. There is not a traditional way to back up / restore boards but the website indicates they are saved in the cloud. There is a library of boards that others have created and made public to browse through. You can create a copy of any of those and then edit them to meet your needs. If you don’t want your board shared be sure to keep it set as “private” (default setting). Using more than one device? Simply log in with your Tap Chat account and your boards will load onto it. A subscription is required for more features and full customization. Last update: June 2018. More info: http://www.tap.chat. There is also an Android version (see list below). Since the website indicates that these are “cloud based boards” then you may be able to share boards across platforms. I don’t have any Android devices to try that out.

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  1. CommBoards by Dana Fridman, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/commboards/id1522541894, iPad only, iOS 9.3 or later, $14.99. Includes pre-made content and the ability to add your own. This app developer just released the iOS version of this app in July 2020. It’s one that I’ve seen for Android on the Google Play App Store so it’s cool to finally be able to try it out. There is not currently a way to backup programming but the app developer indicated that they plan to add that soon and will be updating the app frequently. More info: http://commboardsapp.com. There are also Android versions – Google Play & Amazon (see list below).

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  1. Grid Player by Sensory Software International, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/grid-player/id456278671, iOS Universal, iOS 7.0 or later, FREE. Includes pre-made content in four grid sets: Symbol Talker A, Symbol Talker B, Talking Photos and Text Talker Phrasebook. The content that is included is well designed and helpful. It may give you an idea of what to program in another app since you cannot edit or add your own content to this app unless you have one of their devices. Has two voice choices. Since the update was almost 4 years ago so I’m not sure how much longer this app will continue to work when a new iOS is released. More info: https://thinksmartbox.com/product/grid-player/. My guess is that they will be focusing on the much newer Grid for iPad app (there is a free version of that app but it only has a short trial and then requires a subscription). Last update: July 2016. More info: https://thinksmartbox.com/product/grid-player/.

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  1. Sono Flex Lite by Tobii Dynavox LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/sono-flex-lite/id463709444, iOS Universal, iOS 8.0 or later. FREE. Includes pre-made content. Cannot edit or add your own content. I do NOT recommend purchasing the full version of this app since it took quite awhile for the app developer to update it for iOS 11 and they have made it very clear that their focus is on the newer Snap Core First app. Last update: March 2018. More info: https://www.tobiidynavox.com/en-US/software/ipad-apps/sono-flex-for-ios-1/. They offer a free version of Snap Core First but it only has voice output during the trial period: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/snap-core-first/id1072799231, has several IAPs. ASHA certified SLPs – see my blog post about how you can get long term access to voice output in that app: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2016/06/11/aac-tips-how-slps-can-get-free-access-to-aac-apps-aac-app-user-groups-funding-options-more/.

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  1. Widgit Go Basic by Widgit, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/widgit-go-basic/id864040731, iOS Universal, iOS 9.3 or later. FREE. Includes pre-made content. Cannot edit or add your own content. Would be most helpful for those living in the U.K. since the content cannot be edited. Widgit symbols are more commonly used there. I have used the following activity boards within this free app quite a bit: Simon Says, Shopping List (great to pair with toy foods and grocery store props), Story Planner (great as a visual support for teaching story elements) and Date Today (great for Calendar time since it includes days of the week, date (month/day) and weather). I do not own the full app so cannot comment on whether or not it is worth getting. Last update: March 2018. More info: https://www.widgit.com/products/widgit-go/index.htm?_route_=widgitgo. (Not AAC but thought it was worth sharing …. I do own these Widgit apps and have found them helpful: Symbols2Write by Widgit, https://apps.apple.com/us/app-bundle/symbols2write/id931886845, unique symbol supported sentence creation bundle of 4 apps)

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  1. Posco AAC by Bryan Keller, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/posco-aac/id545435661, iOS Universal + Apple Watch, iOS 8.0 or later, watchOS 2.2 or later, $4.99. Uses open source ARASAAC symbols. Includes pre-made content and the ability to add your own. Buttons can be reordered. Can use recorded voice or text to speech. Can add pics saved on your Camera Roll or by taking a picture. The website is gone and the last update was over 4 years ago so I’m not sure how much longer this app will continue to work when a new iOS is released. Works fine on my iPhone 7 running iOS 13.5.1. Last update: May 2016.

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  1. InnerVoice Smart Communication by iTherapy, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/innervoice-smart-communication/id730856179, iOS Universal, iOS 11.4 or later, FREE. They have made some nice improvements in their last few updates. The avatar technology has greatly improved and I thought it was cool that I could import my Facebook avatar or any other pic to use in the app. The app is free now and the basic features are all free to use. Includes pre-made content. Cannot edit or add your own without purchasing the IAP (either $4.99 per month or one-time purchase of $99.99). The app developer does a good job keeping the app updated. Last update: June 2020. More info: https://innervoiceapp.com & https://innervoiceapp.com/support/ .

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  1. Verbal Me by fishdog, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/verbal-me/id495853688, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, $6.99. Includes pre-made content and the ability to edit 25 “custom” button pages. Those customized boards also allow you to edit the name of the board, edit the button color, add a picture to the button and text. Uses text to speech with a male or female voice. The app developer does a good job keeping the paid version of the app updated. Last update: February 2020. More info: http://www.fishdog.net/verbal-me/ (free lite version: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/verbal-me-sampler/id504978876, limited content, only 4 pages can be edited and only two of those allow pictures to be added to the buttons – field of 2 choices and field of 6 choices. Last update for the free version: January 2018.)

 

  1. Verbal Me Español by fishdog.net, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/verbal-me-espa%C3%B1ol/id747621945, iOS Universal, iOS 8.0 or later, $3.99. Includes pre-made content (much less than the English version) and the ability to edit 10 “custom” button pages (can only add text to the buttons on these pages). But for the price it includes pre-made content and a text to speech keyboard that speaks the letter and complete word that could be helpful in an educational setting. Uses text to speech with a male or female Spanish voice. Last update: August 2017.

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  1. See Me Talk by Kevin Hanasyk, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/see-me-talk/id590399460, iPad only, iOS 8.0 or later, $9.99. I love the unique look and feel of this app. Parts of it remind me of a PECS book. I like the unique symbols, love that the symbols are included if you print the sentence strip and how the app showcases what is being spoken from the sentence strip. It’s easy to program and much more affordable than the PECS iv+ app or any other “PECS-like” app. Includes pre-made content and the ability to add your own. Can search among pre-made and created content. Can edit and add categories & cards and re-order them. Uses text to speech with a male or female voice. Last update: May 2017. More info: https://www.seemetalkapp.com/features.

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  1. Tom Taps Speak – AAC for Kids by Archmob Pte Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/tom-taps-speak-aac-for-kids/id805544185, iPad only, iOS 7.0 or later, FREE, IAPs for additional content and the ability to customize. Includes a lot of nice pre-made content. Cannot edit or add your own content unless you purchase the IAP. I don’t recommend purchasing any of the IAPs since the app hasn’t been updated since March 2015. I don’t know how well it will work with newer versions of iOS. More info: http://tomtaps.com/tom-taps-speak-2/.

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  1. Card Talk by LITALICO Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/card-talk/id1219854974, iOS Universal, iOS 8.0 or later, FREE. The App Store description mentions an IAP to unlock “All Functions” but the latest update indicates that you can create up to 200 additional cards without needing to purchase anything. Includes pre-made content and the ability to add your own. It’s easy to add your own cards with recorded speech. They are added to a folder called “Original”. You can limit the items shown by creating “decks” and choosing “deck” under “selectable cards” in the settings area. I did not find a way to back up programming or move the card that I added to one of the existing folders. The cards are a little larger when using the app with your iPad in “portrait” orientation. The app has 10 language options. Last update: May 2018. More info: https://app.litalico.com/cardtalk/index.html.

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  1. AAC Expression Toolkit by Mina Makary, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/aac-expression-toolkit/id1308082746, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, FREE. Last update: October 2019. The description in the App Store mentions a free trial period and then a subscription but the website is missing so I was not able to find out details. Seemed odd since the app was updated fairly recently. I tapped “skip” on the Sign Up / Sign In screen and the app appears to include all basic content but would require a subscription to customize the app. Since the website is missing I would NOT suggest subscribing. I thought the Alexa page was cool. It gave me ideas on things to program in other AAC apps and examples of icons to use on those buttons.

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  1. Leeloo AAC – Autism Speech App by DOYBLS, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/leeloo-aac-autism-speech-app/id1508952198, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, the basic app functions and content are FREE with IAP for subscription for more content and features. Unique interface and use of emoji style open source symbols. The colors used in the symbols are muted (what they describe as being “autism-friendly colors”). When you tap on a symbol another screen pops up with several emoji based phrases for that word pop up. You can search for words and phrases. The app includes a premade pack with Pandemic related vocabulary. Packs can be re-ordered on the home screen and deleted but I did not find a way to re-order buttons within a pack, a way to edit buttons, a way to edit phrases or a way to add your own decks, cards or phrases. It’s not clear from the app description whether or not a subscription adds these features or may just add extra pre-made symbol packs. There is a contact e-mail address on their website where you could ask before considering whether or not you want to subscribe. This new app was released in May 2020. More info: https://assistivecards.com/leeloo/. There is an Android version (see below).

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  1. PAROL by Les Applications C, Inc, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/parol/id1472197509, iPad only, iOS 9.3 or later, FREE. Includes pre-made content and the ability to add your own. Has several additional features that are cool: an interactive pain scale (same content as the Doloris app that disappeared from the App Store several years ago), a visual timer, a visual sequence page, the ability to print a PDF of picture symbols, etc. Last update: August 2019. More info: http://parol-aac.com/en/parol/.

  1. PAROL Mini by Les Applications C, Inc, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/parol-mini/id1476818837, iOS Universal, iOS 11.0 or later, FREE. More info: http://parol-aac.com/en/parol-mini-en/. They also have a free app to make printed symbols using your own pictures and/or their symbol library: PictoMaker by Les Applications C, Inc, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/pictomaker/id1477449329, iOS Universal, iOS 10.0 or later, FREE. Last update: August 2019. More info: http://parol-aac.com/en/pictomaker-en/.

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Free & affordable iOS apps with one large button (like a BIGmack voice output communication aid – VOCA):

  1. iSpeak Button Collection by Goatella, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ispeak-button-collection/id736740098, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, $5.99. A set of large round single buttons (one per page). Switch between buttons by swiping across the screen. Up to 15 buttons. The color of the button can be customized (twelve different color choices) and a picture or text can be added to the button. Last update: May 2017. More info: https://goatella.com/index.php/special-education/ispeak-button-collection. They also have a iSpeak Button single button app for $3.99 (can change the button color and add text, cannot add a picture) but for only $2.00 more this is the better bargain (up to 15 single buttons & the ability to add a picture or text to each button). It’s much more affordable and easier to use than any of the TapSpeak Button apps. This app developer also has an iSpeak Sequences app (can change the button color and add text, cannot add a picture) & a Touch Switch app, iOS Universal, iOS 6.0 or later, $4.99. I love using this app as an adapted way to activate music and videos. Last update: May 2017. More info: https://goatella.com/index.php/special-education/touch-switch)

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  1. Smooth Talker AAC by Pretorian Technologies, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/smooth-talker-aac/id1032679182, iPad only, iOS 10.0 or later, usually $12.99 (*** This app has been free since 4/20/20 but have no way to know how much longer it will be free ****). Last update: December 2018.

 

One or two buttons are shown on-screen and may be round or square. Buttons can be made to change color from one message to the next and each button can be replaced with a photo on a message by message basis (direct from the camera or from the gallery). You can also add text to any button or photo. Unfortunately you cannot add a photo to one of their round colored buttons or have text on a square button that is above the picture. My work around for this is to import a screenshot of one of the round buttons into my Wishboard app, add a symbol on top of it and then save it to my Camera Roll to use in this app. I have also imported a screenshot of a button from the GoTalk Now app where I have a picture with the text on top. Several mode options: Sequential, Random (with repeats), Random (no repeats), Choice, Conversation, Auditory Prompt. Switch capable via iOS Switch Control.

Instruction guide: http://www.pretorianuk.com/downloads/app_instructions/smoothtalker_app.pdf. Additional info on their website: https://www.pretorianuk.com/smooth-talker-app.

Facebook user group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/assistive.technology.group/permalink/2859975517390894/
https://www.facebook.com/pretorian.tech/

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  1. PlayButton by Aardustry LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/playbutton/id472870128, iOS Universal (iPhone & iPad), iOS 10.1 or later, FREE, single button (cannot add a picture to it so not a “symbol-based AAC app” but sharing since I used it so much). I love the huge green “play button”. The activation area is very large (almost the entire screen). Last update: April 2017. The option to toggle on “Record Lock” is found in the device Settings area. Scroll down to find this app. That allows a recorded sound to be locked & hides the record buttons. More info: http://www.aardustry.com/early-childhood-development/playbutton.html.

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  1. Talking Button by Masanori Kubota, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/talking-button/id1267894987, iOS Universal, iOS 10.3 or later, FREE, set of three single button pages (blue, red, chartreuse) and the number in the same color in the top left corner (can edit the text below each button or toggle text off, cannot add a picture to the buttons so not a “symbol-based AAC app” but sharing since I used it quite a bit). Switch between buttons by swiping across the screen. Last update: August 2017.

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  1. ChatterBoards AAC by Paul Popiel (see info above). This versatile app can be super simple. I love that you can program a board with 1 huge button that fills almost the entire screen and the whole area can be activated. To do this select 1 row & 1 column when programming a board. Lots of other features and you can backup/restore & share programming. Read the first section above for all the info.

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Free & affordable iOS apps to make very simple choice boards:

  1. Make a Choice – AAC Buttons by pkclSoft, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/make-a-choice-aac-buttons/id1295966224, iOS Universal, iOS 9.3 or later, $4.99. A fabulous app for the price! Simple to program & use. I love the plain black background and numerous color options for buttons. A picture can be added to buttons. Voice can be recorded or use Text to Speech. Can backup / restore programming & share boards. Can print boards. The app developer does a good job keeping the app updated. Last update: October 2019. More info: http://www.pkclsoft.com/wp/ & https://edshelf.com/tool/make-a-choice-aac-buttons/.

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  1. ChatterBoards AAC by Paul Popiel (see info above). This versatile app can be super simple. I love that you can program a board with 1 huge button that fills almost the entire screen and the whole area can be activated. I love that you can program a board with 1 huge button that fills almost the entire screen. Can also have 2 buttons (1 row, 2 columns or 2 rows, 1 column), 3 buttons (1 row, 3 columns or 3 rows, 1 column), 4 buttons (2 rows, 2 columns), etc. when programming a board. Lots of other features and you can backup/restore & share programming. Read the first section above for all the info.

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  1. ChoiceBoard – Creator by Techno Chipmunk Innovations Inc
    https://apps.apple.com/us/app/choiceboard-creator/id453988580, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, $1.99. The programming is a little quirky (be sure to tap the check mark that all the items are “correct” answers if you are using this for communication, be sure to tap on “remove audio” to remove other sound effects, toggle off randomization, be sure to tap “save” and “done” when editing) but I like that you can change the background color and love how the selected item is then enlarged to fill the entire screen. Can add a picture, video, music and recordings to buttons. I’ve also used this app to create receptive language activities and as an adapted means to play favorite music or videos. Those play from music and videos saved on that device. There is not a way to stop the music or video from continuing to play to the end without exiting the app. You can share boards via e-mail and back up to Google Drive. Last update: September 2018. More info: http://technochipmunk.com. (free lite version: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/choiceboardcreatorlite/id1172621557, worth looking at before buying but there is no way to backup programming and limits what you can create).

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  1. Choice Boards by Lukasz Wroczynski, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/choice-boards/id1059544273, iPad only, iOS 9.3 or later, FREE. Pretty easy to program. There is no border around buttons. The page background is white. A board either has the option for 6 or 12 buttons but can leave some blank. No option to change color of board background or button color. No way to backup programming. This app is used with the iPad in “portrait” orientation instead of the more common “landscape” orientation. Last update: October 2017. More info: https://choiceboards.wordpress.com.

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  1. SoundingBoard by AbleNet, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/soundingboard/id390532167, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, FREE with IAPs for additional content. Includes pre-made content and the ability to add your own. This is one of my least favorite AAC apps but am including it on this post since others seem to like it. It works on an iPhone so I occasionally use it on that. I don’t find this app intuitive to program and don’t care for the app interface. I don’t like how you keep adding buttons instead of being able to see and choose a grid layout and don’t have the option to use a larger grid and leave some buttons unused or hidden (like you can in the GoTalk Now Lite app). Can have from 1-20 buttons per page, can drag to reorder buttons, can edit & delete buttons (but no way to temporarily hide/disable buttons like you can in the GoTalk Now Lite app), can link pages, can backup and share boards, has three background color choices (black, yellow, white) and option for switch scanning use. I haven’t found a way to program the app to open to a home board. There are several unsecured links so be sure to toggle off the ability to make IAPs and use in Airplane Mode. The app also collects user data and there doesn’t appear to be a way to opt out. Last update: December 2019. More info: https://www.ablenetinc.com/soundingboard.

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Simple Yes/No button apps with voice output (only one app has symbols & can be edited… the rest do not have symbols and cannot be edited):

  1. ChatterBoards AAC by Paul Popiel (see info above). Yes this versatile app is being mentioned in every section. It even has a pre-made board with two large Yes/No buttons (on left: green “yes” with check mark symbol & on right: red “no” with an X symbol). The fabulous thing is you can edit everything so if you want different symbols (or want to remove the symbols), want different button colors, want different button border colors, want a top/bottom orientation, want smaller buttons with blank space in between, want a specific high quality iOS voice (several male & female voices to choose from), etc… it’s all possible in this app. I just got this app today and am seriously LOVING how versatile it is. And you can share programming with other users (a huge plus for those trying to support a family member or patient remotely). Currently FREE. See the first section above for more info.

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  1. YesNo – questions made simple by Owen McGirr, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/yesno-questions-made-simple/id1264635165, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, FREE. Last update: February 2020. Appears to use the iOS voice but I could figure out a way to get the app to speak with a male voice. Each rectangular area takes up ½ of the screen. Green “yes” on top / Red “no” on bottom.

 

  1. Yes or No Communication by Ross Atkin, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/yes-or-no-communication/id1269155698, iOS Universal, iOS 8.0 or later, FREE. Last update: August 2017. Appears to use the iOS voice but I could figure out a way to get the app to speak with a male voice. Each rectangular area takes up ½ of the screen. Green “yes” on top / Red “no” on bottom.

 

  1. Yes/No from I Can Do Apps by I CAN DO APPS, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/yes-no-from-i-can-do-apps/id635649909, iOS Universal, iOS 7.0 or later, FREE. Last update: September 2015. I don’t know how well it will work with newer versions of iOS. Female recorded voice. I like the wide gap between buttons.

 

  1. Yes / No Button Free by Lakeside Llama LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/yes-no-button-free/id593299519, iOS Universal, iOS 8.0 or later, FREE. Last update: October 2016. Has ads but you can block them by putting the device into Airplane Mode before opening the app. I toggle on “simple sounds” & “green yes button” in the settings. The voice output is recorded and randomized among gender and occasionally includes a younger sounding (but not childlike) voice. I like the round buttons on a high contrast black background.

FYI for Android apps:

I’ve also seen several posts and comments from parents (or SLPs on behalf of parents) who don’t have an iPad but are asking what AAC apps they can try with their child at home on an Android tablet.

Here are a few Android AAC apps to look at in the Google Play App Store. I am recommending these based on my experience using the iOS version (since I don’t own any Android devices) and reading the reviews.

  • Prices & availability were all checked in the USA Google Play App Store and/or Amazon App Store and website links were all working at the time this post was written (3:00pm CST on 7/13/20).
  • Many app developers who have an app on both platforms advise folks to get the iOS version of their app since it has more features and/or is updated more frequently. So these apps may not have all of the features you would see in the iOS version.
  • I am only including one app that showed up as having ads (based on the description in the Google Play App Store and/or Amazon App Store) and I was able to block those ads in the iOS version by using my iPad in Airplane Mode. It’s the only Yes/No app that also had an iOS version that I have.
  • Look at the “Requires Android” section in the app description for each app to determine device compatibility. Some “free” apps are only free for a trial period and then would require an in-app purchase to be able to continue using the app.
  • If you truly want a young child to learn that they can use an Android tablet to communicate, then they will need to only use that particular tablet for that purpose. Ideally any other games or videos should be on a separate device. You’ll need to use an app to lock the child into “kiosk mode” so they can only use the AAC app (like Guided Access on an iPad). This one is free and has good reviews: SecureME – Android Kiosk Launcher Lockdown Pro: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.unfoldlabs.secureme. I was not able to find anything similar on the Amazon App Store so I suggest researching this if you plan on using a Kindle Fire tablet for AAC. Adult and older teen AAC users may be better equipped to make choices to navigate in/out of an AAC app to use a tablet for other purposes…. but I have not found that to be true for young children. If given an unlocked tablet (or iPad) most would prefer to just watch videos or play with other apps. Locking them into the AAC app is intended to provide them the opportunity to learn the power of communication via AAC.

Free and Affordable Android AAC apps that I recommend based on having used the iOS version. See more info about in each of these in the iOS section above:

  1. Cboard: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.unicef.cboard, FREE app & FREE web-based AAC that can be used across platforms. See more details below. More info: https://www.cboard.io.

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  1. SymboTalk – AAC Talker: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.elelad.comboard&hl=en_GB, the app is FREE but has an in-app subscription purchase for Cloud Services: Share, Sync & Backup. More info: https://www.symbotalk.com.

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  1. LetMeTalk – Free AAC Talker: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=de.appnotize.letmetalk&hl=en_GB, the app is FREE but the description indicates there are in-app purchases (not sure what they are for). Also on the Amazon App Store: https://www.amazon.com/AppNotize-UG-haftungsbeschränkt-LetMeTalk-Talker/dp/B00I9JEEEM/. More info: http://www.letmetalk.info

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  1. Alexicom AAC for Android: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.me.alexicomaac&hl=en_GB, FREE. More info: https://www.alexicomaac.com/#free-app

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  1. Tap Chat | AAC Speech Boards: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tapchat, FREE. More info: http://www.tap.chat.

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  1. MyTalkMobile: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.MTA.MyTalkMobile, the app is free but the description indicates there are in-app purchases (not sure what they are for); More info: http://www.mytalktools.com/dnn/2/Home.aspx. See detailed info above regarding what I like about the iOS version of this app. I have no way to know if there is a “messaging” component in the Android version of this app.

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  1. Leeloo AAC – Autism Speech App for Nonverbal Kids: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=org.dreamoriented.leeloo, FREE with IAP for subscription for full content and all of the features. See more info above.

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  1. CommBoards – AAC Speech Assistant: Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.shmoontz.commboards, $14.99. Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Shmoontz-Apps-CommBoards-Speech-Assistant/dp/B07H89GXRW, $14.99. See more info above.

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Affordable Android app with one large button (like a BIGmack voice output communication aid – VOCA) that I recommend based on having used the iOS version:

 

  1. iSpeak Button by Goattella, https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.goatella.ispeak, $3.99 (there is also an Android version of the Touch Switch app for adapted access to music & videos: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.goatella.touchswitch, $4.99). See more info above.

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Free Android app to make very simple choice boards:

 

  1. Photo Communicator AAC Lite: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.portset.photocommunicatorlite&hl=en_GB, FREE (more info: http://www.talkingtablet.com/photo.htm ). This one isn’t available on the iPad so I have no idea how good it is but looked worth trying since it’s free.

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Simple Yes/No button Android app with voice output (doesn’t have symbols & cannot be edited):

  1. Yes / No Button Free by Lakeside Llama LLC, https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.lakesidellama.yesnobutton, FREE. Has ads. See info in iOS section above. I have no idea whether or not there is something similar to “Airplane Mode” on Android devices that could be used to block the ads.

Free web-based AAC open source options (can be used online and some offer an offline option, may work across platforms):

 

  1. AsTeRICS Grid – open source web-based AAC: https://grid.asterics.eu/#welcome. Has the option to set up offline users. Uses voices available on that device or platform. On my iPad the iOS voices showed up as options. The editing is different from what I’m used to so there is a learning curve to get up to speed. Just beginning to explore this option.

 

  1. CBoard – open source web-based AAC: https://www.cboard.io. Cboard works on modern browsers and is available on a wide variety of platforms, including desktops, tablets and mobile phones. Offline support is available on Google Chrome (desktop & Android). There is an Android app (see above). Support for up to 33 languages (vary by operating system). Uses open source Mulberry Symbols. More info about features (vary by operating system): https://www.cboard.io/help/#Features & info about how to program and use it: https://www.cboard.io/help/. FYI…. you’ll want to do some editing if you are in the USA. Several of the items are named differently here (ex: biscuit -> cookie, ice lolly -> popsicle, chips -> fries, crisps -> chips, etc.).

 

  1. OptiKey – open source Windows eye-tracking and communication tool: http://www.optikey.org, https://github.com/Optikey/Optikey/wiki. Optikey is an assistive on-screen keyboard which runs on Windows. It is designed to be used with a low cost eye-tracking device to bring keyboard control, mouse control and speech to people with motor and speech limitations, such as people living with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) / Motor Neuron Disease (MND). Includes support for the CommuniKate symbol communication boards. More info: https://github.com/Optikey/Optikey/wiki/Support-for-CommuniKate-boards & http://communikate.equalitytime.co.uk. CommuniKate is designed for people who rely heavily on the environment or context in order to communicate effectively but understand concepts and language used in conversation and during everyday activities.

Affordable web-based AAC open source option (can be used in a web browser online and works in apps across multiple platforms – iOS, Android, Amazon Kindle, Windows):

  1. CoughDrop – open source cloud-based AAC: https://www.mycoughdrop.com. They offer a free 2-month trial. After that it’s either a monthly subscription (currently $6.00 per month). Info about other pricing options: https://www.mycoughdrop.com/pricing. They often offer a 50% off discount on the Lifetime Subscription fee in April (Autism Acceptance month) & October (AAC Awareness month). They frequently add new board options and do a good job of keeping the app updated. This is the only affordable AAC option that I’ve seen that can send the text and symbols together in a cohesive message via iMessaging and e-mail.

iOS app: CoughDrop by CoughDrop, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/coughdrop/id1021384570, Last update: April 2020

 

Android app: CoughDrop AAC, https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.mycoughdrop.coughdrop

 

Amazon Kindle app: CoughDrop AAC, https://www.amazon.com/CoughDrop-Inc-AAC/dp/B01BU8RUEY/

 

Windows: You can install CoughDrop as a Windows desktop app on your computer or Windows device. CoughDrop on Windows has some eye-tracking integrations that will help it work better with more devices. Please make sure to download the right version for your operating system. https://www.mycoughdrop.com/download

 

Web Browser: CoughDrop is a web-first application, and should work with many modern web browsers.

 

See this for more open source cloud and web-based AAC – not all of the ones listed on the website are free: https://www.openaac.org/aac.html. More about the Open AAC movement: https://www.openaac.org/participate.html


Other higher priced AAC options that can send both symbols & text as a cohesive message: Avaz (in iMessaging and e-mail) and the Clicker Communicator apps (as a PDF either by AirDrop or e-mail. MyTalkTools is the only AAC app that I’ve seen that actually has an iMessaging app component where the app works within iMessaging… but each symbol is messaged separately.)


Sources for symbols and photos to customize AAC apps:

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Want to suggest a free or affordable symbol-based iOS AAC app to be added to this list? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page. I’m pretty picky so they need to be well designed apps and be transparent/honest about any IAPs or subscriptions and not have any ads. If it’s a free app, please send the link from the USA App Store so I can download and try it out. If it’s a paid app that’s priced at $14.99 or less in the USA App Store and you are the app developer, please send the link from the USA App Store so I can look at the info before you send a promo code. I want to make sure that one of my iPads is compatible in order to try it out. I’ll also consider adding an Android AAC app if it has an iOS version available that I can try out.

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There are several more expensive symbol-based AAC apps with robust features. If you are considering those, I highly suggest an evaluation, feature match process & trial of options before purchasing or making purchasing recommendations. Or at least find a way to try out apps to see if they may work for that individual before purchasing.

 

How to find the AT Lending Library in your state: https://www.at3center.net/stateprogram. Many have iPads with AAC apps on them available for short term loan to help with the eval process. But you’ll need to check to see if yours is open and still loaning equipment out during the pandemic.

Another option for SLPs is to see this post for tips on how you can get free access to AAC apps, AAC app user groups, funding options & more: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2016/06/11/aac-tips-how-slps-can-get-free-access-to-aac-apps-aac-app-user-groups-funding-options-more/.

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Looking for free and affordable Text to Speech AAC apps? Check out this post: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2020/06/11/top-10-free-and-affordable-ios-text-to-speech-aac-apps-list-compiled-by-angela-moorad-ms-ccc-slp-omazing-kids/

Looking for free & affordable big text apps that may be helpful when trying to communicate while wearing a mask? Check out this post: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2020/06/20/10-free-affordable-big-text-apps-list-complied-by-angela-moorad-ms-ccc-slp-omazing-kids/

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It took me quite a bit of time to compile this list so please mention OMazing Kids when sharing it on social media and do not copy/paste it onto other blogs or documents or upload it to servers. I have it available here on my blog and plan on keeping my blog up for the foreseeable future.

Thanks,

Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC
Facebook: https://bit.ly/2Si6k7Y

AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amoorad1/

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com

(Ignore any ads that may appear below…. this is a free blog and I don’t have any control over ads nor do I profit from them)

10 Free & Affordable Big Text Apps – list complied by Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, OMazing Kids

10 Free & Affordable Big Text Apps:

Free: 9
Affordable: 1 ($2.99)

None of the apps on this list contain ads or require in-app purchases or subscriptions and may be helpful when trying to communicate while wearing a mask. I went grocery shopping a few days ago and found it difficult to communicate while wearing a mask and trying to request specific items and quantities at the deli counter. So that got me searching through my apps to be better prepared for next time. Thankfully apps that were originally designed either for the Deaf or the Hearing Impaired or for use in noisy environments can now be helpful in a world where face masks are common. FYI… iOS Universal apps can be used on an iPhone or iPad. I found Android versions for two of the apps so I have included links for them below… just know I don’t have any Android devices so can’t comment on how well they work or what features are included on that platform.

Each app has different features so it’s important to try them out to see which one(s) may work best for you or in various situations. The descriptions below are based on the features I am seeing on my iPad Pro running iOS 10.3.3 and my iPhone 7 running iOS 13.4.1 so you may see slightly different options depending on your device and iOS running on that device.

Yes…. I have seen the face masks with the clear front but do not have access to one. I have seen mixed info about how easily you can breathe in them and from what I can tell they are difficult to find right now. I’d be interested to hear if anyone has tried one yet.

Of course I have no way to know how long any app will stay free so grab what you want quickly. Prices and availability were verified in the USA App Store at the time I wrote this post at 8:00pm CST on 6/20/20.

1. Just Big Text by David Coufal, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/just-big-text/id380965096, iOS Universal, iOS 10.0 or later, (type or use voice recognition, can create messages ahead of time and save for later use, very large full screen text, different font options, different color options for font and background, can sync across devices via iCloud), FREE

2. Make It Big by An Trinh, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/make-it-big/id479282584, iOS Universal, iOS 10.0 or later, (type or use voice recognition, very large full screen text, different font options, different color options for font and background, option for light or dark keyboard, can toggle off “Shake to flash” in the setting in the app (I toggled it off since I was worried about the possibility of the flashing triggering seizures), FREE

3. Audivision by ATeamer, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/audivision/id1141299943, iOS Universal, iOS 8.0 or later (type or use voice recognition, can adjust font size in the iPad “Settings” area for this app but the largest setting is not full screen sized), FREE

4. Statement – visual communication and large text by Todd Anderson, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/statement-visual-communication-and-large-text/id1018664801, iOS Universal, iOS 8.0 or later (type or use voice recognition, can create messages ahead of time and save for later use, large full screen text, white text on dark background, no setting options to change font or to change the color of the font or background), FREE

5. Sorenson BuzzCards by Sorenson Communications, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/sorenson-buzzcards/id380582593, iOS Universal, iOS 6.0 or later (type or use voice recognition (but voice recognition wasn’t as accurate), can create cards ahead of time and save for later use, cards are searchable and can be titled and organized by categories, black text on yellow background with faint honeycomb pattern, no setting options to change font, font size or to change the color of the font or background), FREE (Android version: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.sorenson.buzzcards, FREE)

6. Cardzilla by Ink & Salt LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/cardzilla/id623346823, iOS Universal, iOS 13.0 or later (but if previously purchased can download on device running older iOS …. just may not have as many features, type or use voice recognition, white text on black background, no setting options to change font, font size or to change the color of the font or background), has been FREE since December 2019 (Android version: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.nulltone.cardzilla, FREE)

7. eyeHear by eyeHear, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/eyehear/id1321200884, iOS Universal, iOS 11.1 or later, (type or use voice recognition, can toggle between white background with black text and black background with white text, no setting options to change font or font size), FREE

8. Hearing Helper – Live Captions by Rob Norback, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/hearing-helper-live-captions/id1391454121, iOS Universal, iOS 10.0 or later (can type or use voice recognition, can adjust font size (but the largest setting is not full screen sized), can flip text, no setting options to change font or to change the color of the font or background), currently $2.99

9. Flip Writer AAC – Unique Supports for Speech, Hearing, and Complex Needs by Navanit Arakeri, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/flip-writer-aac-unique-supports-for-speech-hearing/id946640730, iPad only, iOS 8.1 or later, usually $49.99, currently FREE

10. Flip Writer AAC Pocket by Navanit Arakeri, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/flip-writer-aac-pocket/id1294284906, iPhone or iPod Touch, iOS 10.0 or later, usually $24.99, currently FREE

It’s been over 4 years since the iPad version of Flip Writer has been free & the first time the iPhone version has ever been free. Based on previous pricing history they will likely only be free for a short time so get them quickly.

Want to suggest an iOS app to be added to this list? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page. I’m pretty picky so they need to be well designed apps and for this type of app I don’t want any in-app purchases or subscriptions. If it’s a free app, please send the link from the USA App Store so I can download and try it out. If it’s a reasonably priced paid app ($4.99 or less) and you are the app developer, please send the link from the USA App Store so I can look at the info before you send a promo code. I want to make sure that one of my iPads or iPhone is compatible in order to try it out.

It took time to compile this list so please “tag” OMazing Kids when sharing it on social media and do not copy/paste it onto other blogs or documents or upload it to servers. I have it available here on my blog and plan on keeping my blog up for the foreseable future.

Thanks,
Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC
Facebook: https://bit.ly/2Si6k7Y
AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amoorad1/
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com

Both versions of the Flip Writer Text to Speech / Speech to Text / Large Text AAC app are currently FREE! Plus info about keyboard extension apps.

This unique Text to Speech / Speech to Text / Large Text AAC app is definitely worth grabbing while it’s FREE! It’s been over 4 years since the iPad version has been free & the first time the iPhone version has ever been free. Based on previous pricing history they will likely only be free for a short time so get them quickly….. I have no way to know when it will revert back to full price. (verified as being available & free in the USA App Store at the time this post was written, 3:50pm CST on 6/20/20)
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Flip Writer AAC – Unique Supports for Speech, Hearing, and Complex Needs by Navanit Arakeri, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/flip-writer-aac-unique-supports-for-speech-hearing/id946640730, iPad only, iOS 8.1 or later, usually $49.99.

Alternative keyboard extension apps can be used since this app uses the iOS iPad keyboard (see details below).
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Flip Writer AAC Pocket by Navanit Arakeri, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/flip-writer-aac-pocket/id1294284906, iPhone or iPod Touch, iOS 10.0 or later, usually $24.99. I just downloaded it since it’s the first time that it’s been free.

Alternative keyboard extension apps are not an option on an iPhone or iPod Touch.
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This particular app developer decided to release two versions of the app instead of making one Universal iOS app so you’ll need to grab both of these if you want to have it on your iPhone & iPad.
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Be sure to read the info on their website to help you get up to speed on using the app: https://www.flipwriteraac.org
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When using this app on an iPad, you may want to look at a variety of keyboard extension apps. I’ve included screenshots of a few but there are even more options. Exploring alternative keyboards can be a game changer for making typing as a means of AAC accessible. Those apps would require a separate purchase. Scroll down to that section on this blog post: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2020/05/17/ios-apps-for-early-exploration-of-typing-specialized-keyboards-compiled-by-angela-moorad-ms-ccc-slp-founder-of-omazing-kids/. A couple are specifically for kids but the rest would be helpful for a wide range of ages.
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For those who read this post later (after these two apps are no longer free) and are looking for other free and affordable Text to Speech AAC app, take a look at this post: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2020/06/11/top-10-free-and-affordable-ios-text-to-speech-aac-apps-list-compiled-by-angela-moorad-ms-ccc-slp-omazing-kids/.
————–
Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC
Facebook: https://bit.ly/2Si6k7Y
AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amoorad1/
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com

Top 10 Free and Affordable iOS Text to Speech AAC apps – list compiled by Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, OMazing Kids

Even when choosing free or affordable AAC apps you’ll want to consider the features that will best match that individual’s needs. This list is not intended to imply that a free or inexpensive AAC app is always a good idea. An app that may be fine for short term use following a surgery or during a bout of laryngitis may not have the features needed for efficient longer term AAC use. Many of these apps have unique features that could be a helpful addition to an AAC user’s communication toolbox. Many AAC users pick and choose what communication tool best suits a stituation.

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  • Free (some have IAPs, none include ads): 5
  • Affordable ($1.99 to $14.99): 5
  • Prices, availability & device/iOS compatibility were all checked in the USA App Store and website links were all working at the time this post was written (9:00pm CST on 6/11/20). Prices may vary outside the USA based on the exchange rate.
  • Screenshots and descriptions are based on features available at the time of this post. AAC apps change frequently as updates are released.
  • Some apps have IAPs (in app purchases) for additional features. So after you have installed those apps and purchased anything that you wanted be sure to adjust the settings on your iPad to prevent unintended purchases.
  • Some of these apps may not be available for download on your device if you are not running the minimum required iOS.
  • Most of the apps on this list are “iOS Universal”. Those can be used on an iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch. But you’ll need to consider vision and fine motor skills when using them on smaller devices.
  • Some have an Android version available. I don’t know how well they work on that platform since I don’t own any Android devices but sharing in case you do and want to take a look at them.
  • The app developer website links are included so you can read more about the features. Many also have the story behind why that app was developed. I love reading those stories 💕

Top 10 Free and Affordable iOS Text to Speech AAC apps:

1. Talk For Me – Text to Speech by Darrin Altman, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/talk-for-me-text-to-speech/id975096888, iOS Universal, iOS 11.0 or later (but an older version can be downloaded if you previously got the app), FREE. Nice combo of typing & phrase buttons. You can save messages in the Archive and can customize several pages of phrase buttons. This was my “go to” app to use when I lost my voice but still needed to provide SLP services. More info about the features: https://www.mobiletouchtech.com/talk-for-me

2. ClaroCom by Claro Software Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/clarocom/id903818521, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, FREE. Nice combo of typing & phrase buttons. Phrases can be edited and are organized by scrollable lists in categories. Lots of setting options. There is a paid version for $16.99 with more features. More info about the features: https://www.claro-apps.com/portfolio/clarocom/

3. Speech Assistant AAC by Ton Schalke, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/speech-assistant-aac/id1139762358, iOS Universal, iOS 10.0 or later, $14.99. Nice combo of typing & phrase buttons organized by categories. Edit by “long press”. Drag & drop to reorder phrase buttons. There are lots of customization options & programming can be backed up via iCloud, e-mail and AirDrop. Definitely worth the price. More info about the features: https://www.a-soft.nl. They also have a switch capable version for $15.99. Android version (with very basic features): https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=nl.asoft.speechassistant&hl=en

4. Quick Type AAC by Digital Scribbler, Inc, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/quick-type-aac/id818079924, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later, $1.99. Just typing (no phrase buttons). Has several voices and setting options, word prediction and a nice large pop up Yes/No button. Definitely worth the price. More info about the features: https://digitalscribbler.com/quick-type-aac/. Android version: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.digitalscribbler.quicktype&hl=en

5. HandySpeech by Eric Zeiberg, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/handyspeech/id563600464, iOS Universal, iOS 8.2 or later, $2.99. Unique combo of handwriting to text to speech, also can type. Can save phrases and delete them but they can’t be edited, re-ordered or organized into categories. You can create shorthand shortcuts. Helpful for those who find writing easier than typing but still want voice output. It has very good handwriting recognition even when using your finger instead of a stylus. Definitely worth the price. More info about the features: http://www.ispeak4u.com

6. MyVoice – Tap or Type to Talk by John Ciocca, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/myvoice-tap-or-type-to-talk/id1111359925, iOS Universal, iOS 11 or later. $5.99. Unique combo of typing text to speech and handwriting to text to speech. Also has a Picture Talk section that has phrases with icons saved in categories. You can add your own custom phrases with pictures and that is synced in iCloud across devices on the same account. You can delete customized items but they can’t be edited, re-ordered or organized into categories. Additional assistive technology features include: Read Talk (uses OCR technology to take a picture, scan the text and read it aloud), Look Talk (use the camera to recognize an item and name it aloud – works best when there is only one item in view and you are close to it), Mirror Talk (I could see SLPs using that with adults post-stroke) and Word Talk (a random written word appears on the screen for the user to practice). Definitely worth the price. Read a feature story about the app developer in the App Store: https://apps.apple.com/us/story/id1437330451.

7. Text to Speech App by Georgi Zlatinov, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/text-to-speech-app/id1217484042, iOS Universal, iOS 10.0 or later, $1.99. Primarily designed to paste in text and have it read aloud but can also use as a Text to Speech app for AAC. The text is highlighted in red as it is read. It uses the iOS keyboard so you have the option of using keyboard extension apps on an iPad. Nice simple interface. Worth the price. You’ll need to read the description of features in the description for this app on the App Store since the app developer’s website doesn’t contain that info.

8. Text to speech – Talkie by Arctic Oudshoorn, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/text-to-speech-talkie/id1156128552, iOS Universal (iOS 12.0 or later) & Apple Watch (watchOS 5.0 or later), FREE. Unique combo of text to speech, save messages on buttons & a whiteboard. The “save to buttons” part of the app was a little glitchy. Worked best on my iPhone but that may have been due to it being on iOS 13.4.1 vs my iPad Mini 2 being on iOS 12.4.7. More info about the features: https://www.talkie-app.com. Android version: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=nl.tribble.talkie

9. Verbally by Intuary, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/verbally/id418671377, iPad only, iOS 8.0 or later, FREE. The voices in the free version are a little robotic but there are some options for keyboard placements. It uses it’s own keyboard so keyboard extension apps cannot be used with this app. There is a paid version with more features but it is pretty expensive ($99.99). More info about the features: http://verballyapp.com

10. AAC Bestie Text to Speech by Elephant Enterprises LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/aac-bestie-text-to-speech/id1391136811, iOS Universal, iOS 11.0 or later, FREE with IAP for additional features. Requires a subscription if you want to customize any of the phrase folders, access more pre-stored phrase folders, backup / restore programming. Website with contact form if you have questions about features: https://www.aacbestie.com/hi

Updated 7/12/20: 

This customizable iPad Text to Speech AAC app is FREE:

PAROL+ by Les Applications C, Inc, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/parol/id1477060497. More info: http://parol-aac.com/en/home/

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Honorable Mention: SayIt! – speak your mind by Owen McGirr, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/sayit-speak-your-mind/id1119303404, iOS Universal, iOS 11.0 or later, FREE. The limit of 14 characters (including spaces) means you can at least check it out for free but it wouldn’t really be functional for communication unless you purchase the IAP for a subscription or one time purchase to fully unlock the app for $17.99. More info about the features: http://enaboapps.com/sayit/. Has several settings options and offers switch access & scanning. It uses it’s own keyboard so keyboard extension apps cannot be used with this app. There are several unsecured links in this app.

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Unless otherwise indicated, the apps on the list above use the native iOS keyboard. When using those apps on an iPad, you may want to look at a variety of keyboard extension apps. Exploring alternative keyboards can be a game changer for making typing as a means of AAC accessible. Those apps would require a separate purchase. Scroll down to that section on this blog post: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2020/05/17/ios-apps-for-early-exploration-of-typing-specialized-keyboards-compiled-by-angela-moorad-ms-ccc-slp-founder-of-omazing-kids/. A couple are specifically for kids but the rest would be helpful for a wide range of ages.

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And three free Text to Speech AAC apps primarily designed for use via head tracking:

  1. Vocable AAC by WillowRoot Apps, LLC., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/vocable-aac/id1497040547, iOS Universal, iOS 13.0 or later, FREE. Unique combo of typing via touch or head tracking. Primarily sharing it so folks who may need head tracking will know about it. Unfortunately I don’t have an iPad running iOS 13 so I was only able to try it out on my iPhone. I liked the phrase buttons but found the keyboard part cumbersome to use via touch. Head tracking is limited to very specific devices and I don’t have any of them to be able to try that out. More info about the features and a list of compatible devices: https://www.vocable.app. Android version: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.willowtree.vocable
  2. Sesame Talking Keyboard by Sesame Enable, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/sesame-talking-keyboard/id1478544364, iOS Universal, iOS 9.0 or later. FREE. Unique combo of typing via touch or head tracking. Primarily sharing it so folks who may need head tracking will know about it. I tried out head tracking and it would take some practice to get good at typing with it but it is cool that it didn’t require such specific devices. More info about the features: https://www.sesame-enable.com
  3. Jabberwocky AAC by Swiftable LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/jabberwocky-aac/id1438561966, iOS Universal, iOS 12.0 or later, FREE. Unique combo of typing via touch or head tracking. However head tracking is limited to very specific devices and the keyboard is specifically designed for head tracking (I found it difficult to use via touch and don’t have any of the specific devices needed to try out the head tracking). Primarily sharing it so folks who may need head tracking will know about it. More info about the features: https://www.jabberwockyapp.com/aac

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There are several more expensive text to speech AAC apps with robust features. If you are considering those, I highly suggest an evaluation, feature match process & trial of options before purchasing or making purchasing recommendations.

How to find the AT Lending Library in your state: https://www.at3center.net/stateprogram. Many have iPads with AAC apps on them available for short term loan to help with the eval process. But you’ll need to check to see if yours is open and still loaning equipment out during the pandemic.
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Another option for SLPs is to see this post for tips on how you can get free access to AAC apps, AAC app user groups, funding options & more: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2016/06/11/aac-tips-how-slps-can-get-free-access-to-aac-apps-aac-app-user-groups-funding-options-more/
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Want to suggest an iOS text to speech AAC app to be added to this list? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page. I’m pretty picky so they need to be well designed apps and be transparent/honest about any IAPs or subscriptions and not have any ads. If it’s a free app, please send the link from the USA App Store so I can download and try it out. If it’s a paid app that’s priced at $14.99 or less in the USA App Store and you are the app developer, please send the link from the USA App Store so I can look at the info before you send a promo code. I want to make sure that one of my iPads is compatible in order to try it out.

It took me quite a bit of time to compile this list so please “tag” or mention OMazing Kids when sharing it on social media and do not copy/paste it onto other blogs or documents or upload it to servers. I have it available here on my blog and plan on keeping my blog up for the foreseable future.

Thanks,

Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC
Facebook: https://bit.ly/2Si6k7Y
AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amoorad1/
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com

Over 44 under $4: Over 44 iOS Early Numeracy Apps under $4.00 each (34 free) + tips on using them for SLPs

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Over 44 under $4: Here’s a list of over 44 iOS early numeracy apps. In this post I am sharing a mix of paid and free apps that I have used and found to be well designed and helpful.

* Free: 35 apps
* Affordable ($.99 – $3.99 – what you might pay for an item from the Target Dollar Spot, a latte from Starbucks, an item on Teachers Pay Teachers or a Boom Card deck): 13 apps
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Why would an SLP use early numeracy apps?
1. A fun way to target plurals.
2. A fun way to work on concepts of “more” & “less”.
3. Many include early vocabulary.
4. Many kids with Autism and other special needs have a high interest in the predictability and repetition of numbers & counting so these apps are motivating. I had several patients who would do all kinds of other “work” to earn a couple of minutes playing a numbers/counting app at the end of a session. The same is true of alphabet apps.
5. The predictable nature of counting lends itself well to working on intraverbal fill-ins.
6. The abacus style apps can be fun to track productions in articulation drills.
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More info about the importance of early numeracy skills:
* Lots of great suggestions for activities parents can do at home: https://www.zerotothree.org/resources/299-help-your-child-develop-early-math-skills
* http://www.child-encyclopedia.com/numeracy/introduction
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1. Finger Glove COUNTING by Classroom Focused Software, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/finger-glove-counting/id1341469919, FREE
2. Finger Glove ADDITION by Classroom Focused Software, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/finger-glove-addition/id1341469963, FREE
3. 10 Bead Math by Classroom Focused Software, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/10-bead-math/id876463366, FREE
4. Number Rack, by MLC by Clarity Innovations, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/number-rack-by-mlc/id1469094747, FREE
5. Rekenrek by mathies by OAME, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/rekenrek-by-mathies/id868343670, FREE
6. 100 Yay! by Incandescent Core, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/100-yay/id797742352, FREE
7. Number Frames, by MLC by Clarity Innovations, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/number-frames-by-mlc/id873198123, FREE
8. Tiggly Cardtoons: 25 Interactive Counting Stories by Tiggly, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/tiggly-cardtoons-25-interactive-counting-stories/id923540012 (can be used without their styluses), FREE
9. Tiggly Chef Addition: Preschool Math Cooking Game by Tiggly, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/tiggly-chef-addition-preschool-math-cooking-game/id923367559 (can be used without their styluses), FREE
10. Farm 123 – Learn to count by StoryToys Entertainment Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/farm-123-learn-to-count/id526322778, currently FREE
11. Good Night Bo: Read-Aloud Book by Wala Bear Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/good-night-bo-read-aloud-book/id1455604118, currently FREE
12. The Lonely Beast 123 – Preschool Number Counting by James Kelleher, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/the-lonely-beast-123-preschool-number-counting/id646406000, currently FREE
13. Meet the Numberblocks! by Blue-Zoo, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/meet-the-numberblocks/id1445555400, FREE
14. Little Elephants (Elefantitos) Numbers by Encantos Media Studios, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/little-elephants-elefantitos-numbers/id1165150613, FREE
15. 10 fingers + by Marbotic, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/10-fingers/id733960020 (parts of it can be used without their wooden number styluses), FREE
16. Montessorium: Intro to Math by Higher Ground Education Inc, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/montessorium-intro-to-math/id381064973, currently FREE
17. TouchMath Counting by TouchMath Acquisition LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/touchmath-counting/id719791250, currently FREE
18. TouchMath Jungle Addition 1 by TouchMath Acquisition LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/touchmath-jungle-addition-1/id884856080, currently FREE
19. TouchCounts by Nathalie Sinclair, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/touchcounts/id897302197, FREE
20. Counting Marbles by NumberShapes LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/counting-marbles/id1254726142, FREE
21. Toddler Counting by iTot Apps, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/toddler-counting/id356807235, FREE
22. 123Babycount by Wayne Smith, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/123babycount/id600693650, FREE
23. Butterfly Math Addition by Yuvika Mandhyan, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/butterfly-math-addition/id484002905, FREE
24. Kids Learning – My First Numbers Counting Game by Innovative Investments Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/kids-learning-my-first-numbers-counting-game/id419028468, FREE
25. Numbers and Number Words by Good Neighbor Press, Inc, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/numbers-and-number-words/id439816682, currently FREE
26. 123 Numbers – Count & Tracing by RV AppStudios LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/123-numbers-count-tracing/id1210356444, FREE

27. Math Kids – Add,Subtract,Count by RV AppStudios LLC
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/math-kids-add-subtract-count/id1272098657

28. Feed the Monkey by Busy Things Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/feed-the-monkey/id600524229, FREE
29. LudiTab Numeration by SEJER, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/luditab-numeration/id1275103847, FREE
30. Khan Academy Kids by Khan Academy, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/khan-academy-kids/id1378467217, FREE (organized by type of activity and age/grade)
31. Elmo Loves 123s Lite by Sesame Street, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/elmo-loves-123s-lite/id708551925, FREE (numbers 1-3, get full paid version of the app for all numbers 1-20)
32. Learn Drawing Numbers for Kids by Bini Bambini Academy, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/learn-drawing-numbers-for-kids/id883610447 (FREE (numbers 1-4), has IAP for additional content. Love how it guides you through the tracing and then your drawing is animated.
33. Endless Numbers by Originator Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/endless-numbers/id804360921, FREE (numbers 1-5), has IAPs for additional content (or get full paid version of the app)
34. Quick Math Jr. by Shiny Things, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/quick-math-jr/id926078360, FREE, has IAP for additional content
35. Numbers Farm Nursery Maths KS1 by BrightWare Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/numbers-farm-nursery-maths-ks1/id1203229439, $.99
36. Little Critter Numbers by Oceanhouse Media, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/little-critter-numbers/id893661053, $.99
37. 123 Star Gurus by Colto, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/123-star-gurus/id976534404, $.99
38. Count to 10: Learn Numbers with Montessori by EDOKI ACADEMY, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/count-to-10-learn-numbers-with-montessori/id577153082, $1.99
39. Jazzy 123 – Count with Music by The Melody Book, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/jazzy-123-count-with-music/id546207474, $1.99
40. Mabell’s Zoo by Brenda Long, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/mabells-zoo/id712415904, $1.99
41. Bugs and Numbers by Little Bit Studio, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/bugs-and-numbers/id577575295, $2.99
42. Little Digits Finger Counting by Cowly Owl Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/little-digits-finger-counting/id511606843, $2.99
43. TallyTots Counting by Little 10 Robot, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/tallytots-counting/id424070269, $2.99
44. Drive About Numbers by Artgig Studio, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/drive-about-numbers/id864136403, $2.99
45. Yum-Yum Numbers: count & write by Kindermatica Ltd., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/yum-yum-numbers-count-write/id1046482589, $2.99
46. Montessori Numbers for Kids by L’Escapadou, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/montessori-numbers-for-kids/id547209737, $3.99
47. Count with your fingers! by Génération 5, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/count-with-your-fingers/id803964961, $3.99

48. Lake Hope: Learning Numbers by Peekaboo Studios LLC
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/lake-hope-learning-numbers/id441150471, FREE

49. BabyFirst Find Little Dot 1-10 by BabyFirst
https://apps.apple.com/us/app/babyfirst-find-little-dot-1-10/id913615317, FREE
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Want to suggest an iOS app to be added to this list? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page. I’m pretty picky so they need to be well designed apps and be transparent/honest about any IAPs or subscriptions and not have any ads. If it’s a free app, please send the link from the USA App Store so I can download and try it out. If it’s a paid app and you are the app developer, please send the link from the USA App Store so I can look at the info before you send a promo code. I want to make sure that one of my iPads is compatible in order to try it out.

It took me quite a bit of time to compile this list so please “tag” OMazing Kids when sharing it on social media and do not copy/paste it onto other blogs or documents or upload it to servers. I have it available here on my blog and plan on keeping my blog up for the foreseable future.

Thanks,
Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC
Facebook: https://bit.ly/2Si6k7Y
AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amoorad1/
Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com

A Final Farewell to the Speech with Milo series of apps

It’s sad to say a final farewell to the entire series of the Speech with Milo apps 😢. See the details on this post on the OMazing Kids Facebook page. There has been some good discussion in the comments section about how much folks loved the apps and about the sustainability of apps in the future: https://www.facebook.com/174264525957894/posts/3163202193730764/

I recently discovered that they were all missing from the App Store so I e-mailed the app developer to find out whether or not they would be returning. I didn’t have much hope this time since they were even gone from my “Purchased” area, their Facebook page had disappeared and their other social media sites were dormant.

The app developer should be proud that their series of apps was so well loved by multitudes of SLPs and kids. I had several patients over the years who would specifically request Milo.

We have lost lots of fabulous apps in the years since iOS 11 was released. Many app developers couldn’t afford to keep updating them or had to pick a few to update and let the others disappear. I guess I was so surprised that all of these particular apps disappeared since they had been around so long and at one point this developer was even collaborating with PRC.

If you have an older iPad with these apps currently installed on it and the apps are still working, then you will only continue to have them as long as you leave them installed and don’t update the iOS on that device. Unfortunately I only had a couple installed since I am retired. The iPad Pro that I purposefully kept on iOS 10.3.3 is starting to feel like a time capsule full of apps that are from a bygone era…. what I now think of as the “golden age of apps”. We see far fewer new apps released now and many developers have gone the route of subscriptions and/or in-app purchases to attempt to remain sustainable.

Here is the reply that I received: “Hi Angela, Yes, unfortunately they have been removed from the App Store. The last iOS update took them down and we are not able to update them. We are so very sad to discontinue them after 10+ years. Thank you for reaching out. – Poorani”

http://www.speechwithmilo.com

Speech with Milo: Verbs

Speech with Milo: Sequencing

Speech with Milo: Articulation Board Game PRO

Speech with Milo: Articulation Board Game

Speech with Milo: Prepositions

Speech with Milo: Adjectives

Speech with Milo: Nouns

Speech with Milo: Interactive Storybook

(Spanish) Speech with Milo: Verbs

(Spanish) Speech with Milo: Prepositions

Feelings with Milo

Language Lab: Spin and Speak Social Skills

Language Lab: ing Verbs + Prepositions

Language Lab: Adjectives

Speech with Milo: Therapy Tool Kit

—————

Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC

Facebook: https://bit.ly/2Si6k7Y

AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amoorad1/

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com

Looking for a way to get an iOS app when you don’t have access to your iPad or it can’t download that app? How to Download iPad Apps From iTunes on Your PC or Mac.

img_5185.

How to Download iPad Apps From iTunes on Your PC or Mac. A workaround returns this feature to your computer (article from January 13, 2020). Get the link on this post: https://www.facebook.com/174264525957894/posts/3038496919534626/?d=n

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There were two “iPad only” apps that require iOS 13 that were free last month. But neither of my iPads are running iOS 13. My iPad Mini 2 can’t be updated and I have chosen not to update my iPad Pro beyond iOS 10.3.3 in order to not lose a bunch of older apps that were never updated to be compatible with iOS 11.

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So I tried out the workaround from this article on my Windows laptop and it worked. Woo Hoo! I have to admit I did a tech-geeky happy dance 💃🏼💻

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Now those apps are in my “purchased” area in iTunes and available to download when I eventually get a new iPad.

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I’m sharing this as a workaround for those who may not have an iPad yet or may not have access to it in the midst of the COVID-19 / Coronavirus pandemic.

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Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC

Facebook: https://bit.ly/2Si6k7Y

AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amoorad1/

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com

iOS apps for Early Exploration of Typing & Specialized Keyboards – compiled by Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids

iOS apps for Early Exploration of Typing & Specialized Keyboards

Here is a list of over 50 iOS apps for early exploration of typing and specialized keyboards. For kids who are just beginning to show an interest and are easily frustrated it’s important to keep it as motivating and as fun as possible. An iPad full of well designed apps can be an amazing tool in your educational & therapeutic toolbox.

In this post I am sharing a mix of paid and free apps that I have used and found helpful.

  • Free: 22 apps
  • Affordable ($.99 – $4.99 – what you might pay for an item from the Target Dollar Spot, a latte from Starbucks, an item on Teachers Pay Teachers or a Boom Card deck): 21 apps
  • Mid-priced ($5.99 -$15.99 – what you might pay for a new toy, game or picture book): 7 apps
  • Expensive ($16.99 – $24.99 – what you might pay for therapy materials or bundles of items on TPT, both are specifically designed for individuals with special needs): 2 apps
  • Very expensive (over $24.99 – is specifically designed for individuals with special needs and has lots of customization features): 1 app

Of course every app that I share will not be a good fit for every child so it’s up to you to determine the ones to use with your child or patient.

I had several patients over my career whose interest in typing and AAC was initially sparked by their high interest in letters and the predictable order of the alphabet (similar to kids with a high interest in numbers, dates, etc…). Typing can also become an important part of writing and access to the curriculum.

You can save the PDF of this post in the iBooks app on your iPad and then tap on each link to go to that app in the App Store (it’s a 5-page PDF).

App prices & availability was verified in the USA App Store at the time of this post at 3:00pm CST on 5/17/20. Prices may vary in other countries based on the exchange rate. I only have access to the USA App Store so be sure to check prices before downloading in other countries.

General App Tips:

  • Some apps have IAPs (in-app purchases) to add extra features or have unsecured links so make sure the iPad is in “airplane mode” and toggle off the ability to download IAPs in the Settings area BEFORE opening the app. Even apps with “secured links” could be hacked by some kids so it’s always wise to go ahead do these two things before using apps with kids. I avoid apps with ads (some can be blocked via “airplane mode” but others cannot). It’s also wise to use Guided Access to prevent exiting the app you are using.
  • If you like a “lite” version of an app, it is always a good idea to see if there is a full paid version of the app to purchase vs. using an IAP to upgrade within a free lite app. I’ve had enough problems with IAPs and trying to restore IAPs to avoid them as much as possible. Also most schools & public agencies have purchasing regulations that make it difficult or impossible to purchase items via IAP but can purchase a full paid app. This is the same reason that I typically avoid apps that require a subscription.
  • If you are looking for Android apps, the quickest way to see if an app has an Android version is to copy the name of an app and then paste into the search area on the Google Play app store or Amazon app store. If the app is available it may not be free on those platforms and/or may contain ads so look closely at each app description. Also look at reviews to see how well apps function since Android versions of apps may not be updated as frequently as iOS apps.

Apps that use their own in-app keyboard (instead of the iOS iPad keyboard):

  1. Tapkins by Island Pte Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/tapkins/id1317210444, FREE (The errorless learning style in this app would be a really good match for most kids with Autism.)
  2. Baby Keyboard by Ruiyi Chen, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/baby-keyboard/id1448361670, FREE (Ignore the word “baby” in the app name. It’s a fun free app, has color cue for the correct key and several categories of typing cards to choose from in the settings.)
  3. Interactive Alphabet ABC’s by Piikea St. LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/interactive-alphabet-abcs/id383967580, $2.99 (The typing activity within this app is fun and there is a subtle cue for the correct letter keys.)
  4. The Writing Machine by Hump Software, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/the-writing-machine/id438108325, $.99 (Explore and tap to match initial letter in a word. Has options for switches and scanning is needed.)
  5. i Can Type – Sight Words by Michael Harvey, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/i-can-type-sight-words/id1292509602 $.99 (Nice cueing for correct keys and easy sight words presented in context of color photo and word narrated in a simple sentence.)
  6. Clever Keyboard: ABC Learning Game For Kids by Absolutist Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/clever-keyboard-abc-learning-game-for-kids/id576724288, $.99
  7. Verbal Me Sampler by fishdog, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/verbal-me-sampler/id504978876, FREE (has a typing page with voice output)
  8. Lexi’s World by Pop Pop Pop LLC
    https://apps.apple.com/us/app/lexis-world/id1434971401, $2.99 (errorless typing with cues, can use upper or lowercase QWERTY keyboard, what you type is added to the screen then tap on animals to see what they want you to add)

Apps that use the iOS iPad keyboard (this means you can combine it with one of the keyboard extension apps):

  1. Type Letters by Tin Whistle, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/type-letters/id1498328032, iOS 13.2 or later, FREE (no frills, just types big letters on white background, nice to use for a no distraction exploring typing background)
  2. Audivision by ATeamer, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/audivision/id1141299943, iOS 8.0 or later, FREE (no frills, just types big letters on white background, can slide to adjust font size in the iPad Settings area for this app, nice to use for a no distraction exploring typing background)
  3. Statement – visual communication and large text by Todd Anderson, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/statement-visual-communication-and-large-text/id1018664801, FREE (no frills, just types big letters on dark background, nice to use for a no distraction exploring typing background)
  4. Keyboard Explore by Susan Hossack, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/keyboard-explore/id608928363, FREE (may not work for iOS 11 or beyond, has option for external Bluetooth keyboard)
  5. Type and Learn HD-S by Jetmobile, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/type-and-learn-hd-s/id846561699, $.99 (uses iOS iPad keyboard but keyboard extension apps only work in the open ended typing area, has open ended typing with text to speech, option to toggle on red outline around keys as hint in the spelling activity)
  6. Dic-Dic. Multilingual dictation to practice spelling, writing and sound-letter matching by Perception Technologies, S.L., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/dic-dic-multilingual-dictation-to-practise-spelling/id643656920, FREE
  7. Animal Typing – Lite by Corentin Faucher, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/animal-typing-lite/id925341131, FREE lite app. (Has options for external Bluetooth keyboards. I don’t have the full paid version so don’t know if it’s worth $14.99 or not.)
  8. SnapType by SnapType, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/snaptype/id1124115982 , FREE with IAP to upgrade to the Pro version (a “must have” app that allows you to import any worksheet to type onto it; if you want more features look at the full paid version of the app: SnapType Pro by SnapType, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/snaptype-pro/id1124123246, $4.99.)
  9. Adobe Scan Digital PDF Scanner by Adobe Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/adobe-scan-digital-pdf-scanner/id1199564834, FREE with IAPs
  10. Adobe Acrobat Reader for PDF by Adobe Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/adobe-acrobat-reader-for-pdf/id469337564, FREE with IAPs (these two Adobe apps can be used together to scan a worksheet to turn it into a PDF and then annotate it with typing text. I find SnapType a much easier to use but sharing this as another option.)
  11. ClaroPDF – Image to PDF Reader by Claro Software Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/claropdf-image-to-pdf-reader/id666770153, FREE with IAPs (can also be used to import a picture of a worksheet and then annotate it with typing text. I find SnapType a much easier to use but sharing this as another option.)

Keyboard Extension Apps: It may be helpful to consider using a keyboard extension app that would make the iOS iPad Keyboard easier to use with features that are kid and special needs friendly.

  1. Keedogo by AssistiveWare, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/keedogo/id915829477, $.99 (My favorite keyboard extension app with lots of customization options. Good for beginning typists since it doesn’t have word prediction or auto correction. If you want additional features the look at
  2. Keedogo Plus by AssistiveWare, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/keedogo-plus/id918496636, $2.99 (has more features)
  3. Keeble by AssistiveWare, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/keeble/id918497054, $24.99 quite a bit more expensive due to all of the customization and accessibility features)
  4. Big Keys Low Vision Keyboard by N Thorn, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/big-keys-low-vision-keyboard/id1139220959, $2.99 (specifically designed for unique needs)
  5. My First Keyboard by aacorn, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/my-first-keyboard/id924324310, $1.99 (I like the blocks keyboard with dark background, word prediction can be toggled on/off)
  6. Big Keys Keyboard by Hassan Hattab, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/big-keys-keyboard/id1187555128, $3.99 (several color and font size customization options)
  7. SuperKeys Accessible Keyboard by Crick Software, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/superkeys-accessible-keyboard/id917216287, $12.99 (A very unique keyboard that enlarges quadrants and then you select a large key within it. Nice for those with vision or fine motor needs but can also be helpful for those overwhelmed by looking through the entire field of keys. The SuperKeys keyboard is built in as an option in all of the Clicker Communicator AAC apps.
  8. Phonics Keyboard by Therapy Box Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/phonics-keyboard/id1031514501, $2.99 (There are also some fun activities within the app)

Other unique keyboard extension apps (not necessarily for kids or beginning typists…. but sharing just so folks will be inspired to think outside the box and search the App Store. Apps are often updated with new features and new apps are released frequently:

  1. AlphaBoard – Simple Keyboard by QZero Labs, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/alphaboard-simple-keyboard/id1199298996, FREE (super simple scrollable alphabetic keyboard, keys are very small)
  2. HERO One-handed Keyboard by Corey Stone LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/hero-one-handed-keyboard/id921879642, FREE with IAPs
  3. Fleksy- GIF, Web & Yelp Search by Fleksy, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/fleksy-gif-web-yelp-search/id520337246, FREE with IAPs
  4. Pro Keyboard with PC Layout by Raul Monterroso Cabello, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/pro-keyboard-with-pc-layout/id1106280090, $5.99 (for more advanced typists who want a full PC style keyboard with the ability to customize the color for sensory needs)
  5. SwiftKey Keyboard by SwiftKey, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/swiftkey-keyboard/id911813648, FREE (for more advanced typists who want a full PC style keyboard with the ability to customize the color for sensory needs, customization options, ability to swipe to type, has a nice “real keyboard” feel, the description shows IAPs for additional keyboard styles but as far as I can tell everything is included now. I’m currently using the “Nickel Classic Dark” theme as a nice alternative to the iOS iPad keyboard.)
  6. WordBoard – Phrase Keyboard by Bytesize, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/wordboard-phrase-keyboard/id960167417, FREE with IAPs (would use as a secondary keyboard, allows you to make and use customized phrase buttons)

FYI… There are a few AAC apps that use the iOS iPad Keyboard and therefore would allow for a keyboard extension app to be used. Examples include: Speak for Yourself, Proloquo2Go, Mighty AAC, ChatAble, Proloquo4Text, Predictable, Voice4u TTS, QuickType, Flip Writer, HandySpeech and several other text-to-speech (TTS) AAC apps. Exploring alternative keyboards can be a game changer for making typing as a means of AAC accessible. You may also want to explore accessibility features in the iPad settings (https://support.apple.com/guide/ipad/get-started-with-accessibility-features-ipad9a2465f9/ipados), styluses, adapted styluses, keyguards, external Bluetooth keyboards, etc. Take a look at Lauren S. Enders’ well organized Pinterest boards for ideas: https://pin.it/TWn9w6P (styluses: https://pin.it/t4cy8XV; keyboards & keyboard cases: https://pin.it/NydPTE8). I highly encourage you to collaborate with an Occupational Therapist and/or Assistive Technology Specialist when exploring AT options for the iPad. Some of that equipment is pricey so you want to make good decisions that fit that individual child’s needs. You may want to try things out in order to make those decisions. How to find the AT Lending Library in your state: https://www.at3center.net/stateprogram. Many have iPads, specialized apps and AT equipment available for short term loan to try out before making purchasing recommendations.

Other specialized apps to consider:

  1. Ghost Type – a typing tutor to master your iPad typing skills by demografix pty ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ghost-type-a-typing-tutor-to-master-your-ipad-typing-skills/id495081717, $4.99
  2. inku – tool for dyslexia by Therapy Box Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/inku-tool-for-dyslexia/id1042258087, $14.99
  3. Abilipad by Cheryl Bregman, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/abilipad/id435865000, $9.99
  4. Clicker Sentences by Crick Software, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/clicker-sentences/id575603433, $64.99 (I love the Clicker apps but the description in the App Store mentions they are being replaced by the Clicker Writer system. See their website for information: https://www.cricksoft.com/us/clicker/apps)
  5. Pictello by AssistiveWare, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/pictello/id397858008, $18.99 (uses the iOS iPad keyboard, many kids are motivated to type as they create their own books)
  6. Easy Dyslexia Aid: Dyslexic & Dysgraphia Support by Nuapp Productions Pty Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/easy-dyslexia-aid-dyslexic-dysgraphia-support/id1088194043, $2.99
  7. Word Wizard for Kids School Ed by L’Escapadou, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/word-wizard-for-kids-school-ed/id447312716, $7.99 (Not a “typing” app but a really fun way to introduce kids to letter exploration and putting together letters to make words.). Their letter tracing app is also great: Writing Wizard for Kids by L’Escapadou, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/writing-wizard-for-kids/id631446426, $4.99
  8. Endless Alphabet by Originator Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/endless-alphabet/id591626572, $8.99 (Not a “typing” app but a really fun way to introduce kids to letter sounds as you drag letters back in place to make words to match funny illustrated animations.)

Double the fun: If you have access to two iPads it is fun to have these apps on one iPad and then have the keyboard based apps (or AAC app with a keyboard) on a separate iPad. After the child types the letter they get to complete the activity for that letter on the other iPad as a reward/reinforcer for typing. And of course all of these apps are fun for early literacy play & exploration.

  1. Alpha Fun by KrakenEight LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/alpha-fun/id1071728452, FREE
  2. Avokiddo ABC Ride by AVOKIDDO, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/avokiddo-abc-ride/id827657068, $2.99
  3. Seuss’s ABC – Read & Learn by Oceanhouse Media, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/dr-seusss-abc-read-learn/id1011479119, $5.99 (It’s so much more than just the book. This app is full of lots of fun letter activities.)
  4. Elastic Alphabets® for kids : Educator recommended learning game for preschoolers by VYAAP TECHNOLOGIES PRIVATE LIMITED, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/elastic-alphabets-for-kids-educator-recommended-learning/id977077498, $3.99
  5. Goodnight ABC by Quasar Alliance, Inc, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/goodnight-abc/id539568451, $1.99 (includes a fun interactive scene for each letter and a swipe to add color area)
  6. My ABC Train HD by LoeschWare, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/my-abc-train-hd/id707630889, $1.99 (can be customized with your own pics, labels & voice recordings so it can be adapted to specific high interest areas)
  7. Starfall ABCs by Starfall Education, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/starfall-abcs/id395623983, FREE
  8. Khan Academy Kids by Khan Academy, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/khan-academy-kids/id1378467217, FREE (lots of great activities organized by type of activity and age/grade)
  9. ABC Actions by Peapod Labs LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/abc-actions/id715396289, $2.99
  10. abc WOW! Alphabet Letters Full by Bologna Games, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/abc-wow-alphabet-letters-full/id533054130, FREE

Want to suggest an iOS iPad app to be added to this list? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page. I’m pretty picky so they need to be well designed apps and be transparent/honest about any IAPs or subscriptions. If it’s a free app, please send the link from the USA App Store so I can download and try it out. If it’s a paid app and you are the app developer, please send the link from the USA App Store so I can look at the info before you send a promo code. I want to make sure that one of my iPads is compatible in order to try it out. I only post about apps that I own and have tried out.


It took me quite a bit of time to compile this list so please “tag” OMazing Kids when sharing it on social media and do not copy/paste it onto other blogs or documents or upload it to servers. I have it available here on my blog and plan on keeping my blog up for the foreseeable future.

Thanks,

Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC

Facebook: https://bit.ly/2Si6k7Y

AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/amoorad1/

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/amoorad

Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com


Please ignore any ads that may appear. I have no control over them since this is a free blog and I don’t make anything off it.

170 Free iOS Apps for Occupational Therapists – list compiled by Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids

Here is a list of 170 iOS apps that are currently FREE that pediatric Occupational Therapists may find helpful to use in therapy or as carryover activities to share with families. Some of the apps could target multiple goals but I’ve tried to generally organize them in the list. Most of these apps are not just for use by OTs. I used most of these apps but for different therapeutic reasons as a SLP. And many of them can just be used for fun. I downloaded and tried out all apps before adding them to the list. All apps prices and availability were verified in the USA App Store at the time I wrote this post at 6:00pm CST on 5/13/20. You can save the PDF of this post in the iBooks app on your iPad and then tap on each link to go to that app in the App Store (it’s an 8-page PDF).  I only have access to the USA App Store so be sure to check prices before downloading in other countries.

Tips:

  1. Many of the apps have IAPs (in-app purchases) to add extra features or have unsecured links so make sure the iPad is in “airplane mode” and toggle off the ability to download IAPs in the Settings area BEFORE opening the app. Even apps with “secured links” could be hacked by some kids so it’s always wise to go ahead do these two things before using apps with kids. I typically avoid apps with ads (some can be blocked via “airplane mode” but others cannot).  It’s also wise to use Guided Access to prevent exiting the app you are using.
  2. If you like a “lite” version of an app, it is always a good idea to see if there is a full paid version of the app to purchase vs. using an IAP to upgrade within a free lite app. I’ve had enough problems with IAPs and trying to restore IAPs to avoid them as much as possible. Also most schools & public agencies have purchasing regulations that make it difficult or impossible to purchase items via IAP but can purchase a full paid app. This is the same reason that I typically avoid apps that require a subscription.
  3. If you are looking for Android apps, the quickest way to see if an app has an Android version is to copy the name of an app and then paste into the search area on the Google Play app store or Amazon app store. If the app is available it may not be free on those platforms and/or may contain ads so look closely at each app description. Also look at reviews to see how well apps function since Android versions of apps may not be updated as frequently as iOS apps.

Disclaimers: I’m an SLP not an OT. But I worked with enough fabulous OTs and COTAs over my career and connected virtually with a few others to have a general idea of the types of apps that may be helpful to them. Of course every app that I share will not be a good fit for every child so it’s up to you to determine the ones to use with your particular patients. The purpose of this list is to share free resources but I also want folks to know there are hundreds of fabulous apps that are often very affordably priced or may even be free on a particular day. Please see this blog post and follow OMazing Kids on social media: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2016/12/31/the-ipad-the-slp-in-2017-app-list-for-slps-sorted-by-goal-area/. I plan on updating that huge post soon. 

Activities of Daily Living:

  1. iDo Hygiene –Daily life skills activities, for individuals with special needs (full version) by C.E.T – THE CENTER FOR EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ido-hygiene-daily-life-skills-activities-for-individuals/id994899641
  2. iDo Community – kids with special needs learn to act independently in the community by C.E.T – THE CENTER FOR EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ido-community-kids-special-needs-learn-to-act-independently/id931891099
  3. iDo Food – Kids with special needs learn dining skills (Full version) by C.E.T – THE CENTER FOR EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ido-food-kids-special-needs-learn-dining-skills-full/id931891855
  4. iDo Chores – Daily activities and routine tasks for kids with special needs (Full version) by C.E.T – THE CENTER FOR EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ido-chores-daily-activities-routine-tasks-for-kids/id931894090 (all IAPs are free)
  5. iDo Getting Dressed – Learn the Routine of wearing clothes, for individuals with special needs. (Full version) by C.E.T – THE CENTER FOR EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ido-getting-dressed-learn-routine-wearing-clothes-for/id994900654
  6. Sequence it! – Create and arrange sequences, for kids with autism and other special needs by C.E.T – THE CENTER FOR EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/sequence-it-create-arrange-sequences-for-kids-autism/id1054793304
  7. Sago Mini Babies Dress Up by Sago Mini, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/sago-mini-babies-dress-up/id1132213599
  8. WoodieHoo Dress Up: Animal Fun by RTL DISNEY Fernsehen GmbH & Co. KG, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/woodiehoo-dress-up-animal-fun/id1450403346
  9. WoodieHoo Brushing Teeth by RTL DISNEY Fernsehen GmbH & Co. KG, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/woodiehoo-brushing-teeth/id1436715435
  10. Philips Sonicare For Kids by Philips, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/philips-sonicare-for-kids/id1002285219
  11. Brush Teeth with The Wiggles by The Wiggles International Pty Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/brush-teeth-with-the-wiggles/id1113805211
  12. Toothbrush Games by Ogilvy & Mather Deutschland GmbH, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/toothbrush-games/id641153644
  13. TVOKids Tooth Time by TVO Apps, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/tvokids-tooth-time/id628201571
  14. 32teeth by appomart.com, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/32teeth/id1440048812
  15. Harry’s Healthy Garden by BabyFirst, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/harrys-healthy-garden/id944767396
  16. Feed Twip – Kids learn how to cook healthy food by GAMABILIS, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/feed-twip-kids-learn-how-to-cook-healthy-food/id1173483671
  17. Kid Eats by Learning Games Lab, NM State University, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/kid-eats/id1164545702
  18. Foodsburg by BubbleBud Kids by Dweek Studios, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/foodsburg-by-bubblebud-kids/id1445107729
  19. Veggie Bottoms HD Healthy Eating Made Fun for Kids by Red Card Studios, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/veggie-bottoms-hd-healthy-eating-made-fun-for-kids/id626569693
  20. Veggie Bottoms Kitchen Helper – Timer & Converter by Red Card Studios, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/veggie-bottoms-kitchen-helper-timer-converter/id1120279485 (I liked the content enough to share it but be sure iPad is in “airplane mode” to block ads. Also has links to other apps in App Store so be sure to toggle off ability to purchase apps or IAPs)
  21. Pick Your Plate! by Smithsonian Institution, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/pick-your-plate/id1471647935
  22. HEALTHY HAROLD, HEALTHY ME by Life Education Australia, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/healthy-harold-healthy-me/id983491310
  23. Bento Box Shapes by Two Bulls, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/bento-box-shapes/id665768495
  24. Space Chef by The Lawrence Hall of Science, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/space-chef/id1024085303
  25. Laugh & Learn™ Puppy’s Nose by Fisher-Price, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/laugh-learn-puppys-nose/id415895632

Adapted Leisure:

  1. CanTunes by University of Victoria, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/cantunes/id670015849 (adapted access to music)
  2. YouTube Kids by Google LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/youtube-kids/id936971630
  3. Just Dice by Code Redman Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/just-dice/id470876937
  4. Miney Mo by One to Zero, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/miney-mo/id1242461053
  5. Chwazi Finger Chooser by Tenda Digital, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/chwazi-finger-chooser/id689674978
  6. Picture Dots by New York Hall of Science, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/picture-dots/id1225538365

Adapted Writing:

  1. SnapType by SnapType, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/snaptype/id1124115982 (free lite version)

Building / Creating:

  1. Build A Truck by Duck Duck Moose LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/build-a-truck/id734640915
  2. Labo Train (4+) by Labo Lado Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/labo-train-4/id914323527 (free with IAP for more content. I always just use the easiest level)
  3. Labo Brick Car (6+) by Labo Lado Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/labo-brick-car-6/id1139669780 (free with IAP for more content)
  4. Brick Train Build Game 4 Kids by Labo Lado Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/brick-train-build-game-4-kids/id1481293079 (free with IAP for more content)
  5. Paper Plate Art Game for Kids by Labo Lado Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/paper-plate-art-game-for-kids/id1460529275 (lite version – get the full paid version if you want all the activities)
  6. KOMA KOMA for iPad by TriggerDevice Co.,Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/koma-koma-for-ipad/id635794784 (Super easy to make stop motion videos. Fun to pair with off-iPad building activities)

Dot-to-Dot:

  1. DotToDot numbers &letters lite by Apps in My Pocket Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/dottodot-numbers-letters-lite/id333210438 (lite version – get the full paid version if you want all the activities)
  2. Dot-to-Dot Adventure Lite by GiggleUp Kids Apps And Educational Games Pty Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/dot-to-dot-adventure-lite/id623673590 (lite version – get the full paid version if you want all the activities)
  3. Connect the Dots and Count by Whisper Arts, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/connect-the-dots-and-count/id896144409 (use in “airplane mode” to block ads, has IAPs for additional content)

(I didn’t find any other free dot-to-dot apps that have enough useable content, are well designed, didn’t have ads and/or are still available in the App store. I’d love to add to this section if anyone knows of any. But there are several good affordably priced dot-to-dot apps in the App Store.)

Drawing & Coloring (may want to consider using a stylus or adapted stylus as the writing tool):

  1. Simple Whiteboard by Qrayon by Qrayon, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/simple-whiteboard-by-qrayon/id1327954704
  2. Tayasui Sketches School by Tayasui. Can import own picture. Has unsecured links when exporting creation. https://apps.apple.com/us/app/tayasui-sketches-school/id1354087061
  3. Hello Crayons. Can import own picture. https://apps.apple.com/us/app/hello-crayons/id440149103, iOS (has IAPs for additional features)
  4. Brushes Redux. Can import own picture. Lots of cool features for textures of painting. https://apps.apple.com/us/app/brushes-redux/id932089074
  5. Autodesk SketchBook. Can import own picture. Incredible amount of features, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/autodesk-sketchbook/id883738213
  6. SketchBook Motion. Can import own picture. Has a limit of 3 scenes without a subscription. Similar to #5 but allows adding animation: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/sketchbook-motion/id1061224933
  7. Scribbaloo Paint. A nice super simple kids painting app. Can take a picture of the finished creation. https://apps.apple.com/us/app/scribbaloo-paint-simple-easy-to-use-painting-app-for/id959974785
  8. Coloring Games: Painting, Glow by RV AppStudios LLC. Includes fun paint, color fill, drawing, glow pen, number paint & water art (a swipe to uncover watercolor) activities. Completed art is saved to an art gallery within the app. Nice settings options to toggle off background music, select language, choose which activities you want visible as options, toggle off the “show more apps button”, etc. Has links behind parental gate. They have free printable coloring pages on their website, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/coloring-games-painting-glow/id1480696573
  9. Zen Studio meditation for kids by EDOKI ACADEMY, A unique geometric finger painting app designed to help children relax and focus. Calming instrumentals play as you tap or swipe. Nice Parent and Teacher Guide in the app, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/zen-studio-meditation-for-kids/id1051358262 (be sure to get the in-app purchase to upgrade to the full app while it is free).
  10. Crayola Color Camera by Crayola, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/crayola-color-camera/id1481094201 (turn any picture into a coloring page that can then be saved to the Camera Roll for importing into a coloring app or printed for coloring with real crayons)
  11. Crayola Scribble Scrubbie Pets by Crayola, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/crayola-scribble-scrubbie-pets/id1475682282
  12. Draw and Tell HD by Duck Duck Moose LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/draw-and-tell-hd/id504752087
  13. DRAWING FOR KIDS Games! Apps 2 by Bini Bambini Academy, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/drawing-for-kids-games-apps-2/id908698556 (Love how it guides you through the tracing and then your drawing is animated. Lite app with IAPs for additional content. You’ll have to be very careful to avoid accidentally tapping on the IAPs or subscription. An adult will need to get it to the screen you want and then lock it in via Guided Access. Also be sure to use in “airplane mode and toggle off the ability to purchase apps or IAPs in your iPad settings. The full paid version is only $4.99: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/drawing-for-kids-learning-apps/id908695341)
  14. Drawing Educational Kids Games by Bini Bambini Academy, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/drawing-educational-kids-games/id1225122654 (Love how it guides you through the tracing and then your drawing is animated and dances. Lite app with IAPs for additional content. You’ll have to be very careful to avoid accidentally tapping on the IAPs. So be sure to use in “airplane mode and toggle off the ability to purchase apps or IAPs in your iPad settings)
  15. Happy Panda – Color by Numbers by Roman Timurson, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/happy-panda-color-by-numbers/id1467662535 (lite with IAP for additional content)
  16. Finger Paint with Sounds. Fun immediate cause/effect while painting with music. https://apps.apple.com/us/app/finger-paint-with-sounds/id586598528
  17. A new free cause-effect drawing app that plays classical music as soon as you start drawing and stops as soon as your finger is off the screen. Plain black background & rainbow colored drawing. If you don’t want it to save the drawings to your camera roll be sure to tap “no” when camera permissions pops up (or toggle off saving in the app settings (in iPad Settings area, scroll down to app name). You can also pick a different background color, etc. I played with the app for awhile and did not see any ads. https://apps.apple.com/us/app/rainbowy/id1467288651
  18. Oh ! The magic drawing app. Fun creating with shapes. https://apps.apple.com/us/app/oh-the-magic-drawing-app/id977170314 (IAPs to “tip” the developer)
  19. Monster Coloring Book. Includes “tap to fill” option, stickers, paint with patterns, etc.. There are four options for classical background music and options to adjust the levels of music and sound effects in the settings area. Includes an in app art gallery to edit, save and share the creations. https://apps.apple.com/us/app/monster-coloring-book/id435676573
  20. Inspirit – the art of mandala. https://apps.apple.com/us/app/inspirit-the-art-of-mandala/id1262728983
  21. Woolizoo’s Art & Craft Creator by Nick Fettke, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/woolizoos-art-craft-creator/id900329038

Executive Functioning / Planning / Routines:

  1. Time In Kid by Moving Graphics, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/time-in-kid/id1283205523
  2. Little Timer Hatch Countdown by Bitscuit Games, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/little-timer-hatch-countdown/id1496908204 (IAP for additional features)
  3. Time Timer: iPad Edition by Time Timer LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/time-timer-ipad-edition/id434081367
  4. Time Timer by Time Timer LLC (iPhone version), https://apps.apple.com/us/app/time-timer/id332520417
  5. My Own Interactions by Hiffa Oy Ab, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/my-own-interactions/id1069032256, iPad only (A visual schedule app to keep track of your daily life with text, pictures, photos, video and sound, in a way that makes sense for you.)
  6. Kids ToDo List by LITALICO Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/kids-todo-list/id1250309171
  7. myHomework Student Planner by Rodrigo Neri, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/myhomework-student-planner/id303490844 (IAPs for additional features)
  8. Google Calendar: Time Planner by Google LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/google-calendar-time-planner/id909319292
  9. Reminder with Voice Reminders by Sergio Licea. https://apps.apple.com/us/app/reminder-with-voice-reminders/id469454389 (IAP for additional features)
  10. Google Keep – Notes and lists by Google LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/google-keep-notes-and-lists/id1029207872
  11. Google Assistant by Google LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/google-assistant/id1220976145
  12. SuperNote Notes Recorder&Photo by FITNESS22 LTD, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/supernote-notes-recorder-photo/id484001731 (IAPs for additional features)
  13. Mind Magnets Info Organizer—Visual Grid Checklists by Adams Immersive, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/mind-magnets-info-organizer-visual-grid-checklists/id1000970772
  14. Popplet by Notion, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/popplet/id374151636 (full version currently free, there is a free lite version to try out when this goes back up to full price)
  15. iMindMap Kids by OpenGenius Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/imindmap-kids/id1296769948
  16. Buncee by Buncee LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/buncee/id1093956684
  17. Post-it® by 3M Company, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/post-it/id920127738
  18. nemonic – Sticky Notes App by MANGOSLAB Co.,Ltd., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/nemonic-sticky-notes-app/id1241934178
  19. Toodledo by Pink Java Media, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/toodledo/id292755387 (IAP for additional features)
  20. Focus Matrix – Task Manager by Denys Yevenko, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/focus-matrix-task-manager/id1107872631 (IAP for additional features)
  21. CanPlan by University of Victoria, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/canplan/id598687543
  22. What2Expect by University of Victoria, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/what2expect/id1234304140
  23. Notepad+: Note Taking App by Apalon Apps, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/notepad-note-taking-app/id920402079 (free lite version)

Games:

  1. Whale Trail Junior by ustwo games, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/whale-trail-junior/id569862218
  2. Square-Off – An Educational Game from School Zone by School Zone Publishing, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/square-off-an-educational-game-from-school-zone/id369230474
  3. Pig Pens by James Durie, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/pig-pens/id1448367077
  4. Sound Memo – game for autism by Likomp, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/sound-memo-game-for-autism/id763446082

Handwriting & Tracing:

  1. LetterWorks by Alphabet Galleries, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/letterworks/id735255024
  2. Handwriting Heroes by Cheryl Bregman, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/handwriting-heroes/id1057029973
  3. Writing Wizard – Handwriting by L’Escapadou, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/writing-wizard-handwriting/id1305242235 (free lite version, has IAPs. If you want all the content, get the full paid app instead)

Hidden Pictures:

  1. Hidden Pictures Puzzle Play by Highlights for Children, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/hidden-pictures-puzzle-play/id1462177299 (Has one free hidden pictures puzzle every day. You’ll have to be very careful to avoid accidentally subscribing. I’d suggest the adult navigate to a free puzzle and then use Guided Access to block exiting that area.)

(I didn’t find any free hidden picture apps that have enough useable content, are appropriate for kids, are well designed, didn’t have ads and/or are still available in the App store. I’d love to add to this section if anyone knows of any.)

Home Activities:

  1. OT at Home by Augusta University, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ot-at-home/id1194078736

Mazes:

  1. Maze Jam by Unusually Brilliant Educational Resources LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/maze-jam/id1458832763
  2. Animal Maze by Busy Things Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/animal-maze/id1256364055
  3. Roly And The Leafy Lair by Play9 Studios, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/roly-and-the-leafy-lair/id1478368388
  4. BeeAmazed! Full by Geo Tots, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/beeamazed-full/id1025619742 (full version currently free, there is a free lite version to try out when this goes back up to full price)
  5. Vehicle Maze – Find a route through the maze by STEP BY STEP, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/vehicle-maze-find-a-route-through-the-maze/id1186201607
  6. Animal Maze – Find a route through the maze by STEP BY STEP, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/animal-maze-find-a-route-through-the-maze/id1186203082
  7. Monster Maze – Find a route through the maze by STEP BY STEP, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/monster-maze-find-a-route-through-the-maze/id1186203975

Money & Budgeting:

  1. The Candy and the Coinbot by Applause Learning, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/the-candy-and-the-coinbot/id1058915119
  2. Envelope+ Kid by Robert E Carr Jr, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/envelope-kid/id949620009
  3. Mind Your Own Budget by K20 Center – University of Oklahoma, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/mind-your-own-budget/id721772106
  4. Money Mammals Needs vs Wants by Lanza Entertainment Company, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/money-mammals-needs-vs-wants/id910712865
  5. Currency Challenge by Lanza Entertainment Company, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/currency-challenge/id1025252708
  6. Money Mammals Save for a Goal by Lanza Entertainment Company, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/money-mammals-save-for-a-goal/id1128245668
  7. Dollars & Cents Lite by Attainment Company, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/dollars-cents-lite/id738508003 (free lite version, has IAPs. If you want all the content, get the full paid app instead)

Movement:

  1. Spin-n-Move by Learning Games Lab, NM State University, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/spin-n-move/id1470631675
  2. Jungle Gym 1 by Learning Games Lab, NM State University, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/jungle-gym-1/id1245786895
  3. Jungle Gym 2 by Learning Games Lab, NM State University, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/jungle-gym-2/id1470677918
  4. GoNoodle Games by GoNoodle, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/gonoodle-games/id1497169748

 Multiple Goals:

  1. Khan Academy Kids by Khan Academy, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/khan-academy-kids/id1378467217 (organized by grade level and activity type)
  2. Daniel Tiger for Parents by PBS KIDS, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/daniel-tiger-for-parents/id1185651115

 Play:

  1. WoodieHoo Animal Friends World by RTL DISNEY Fernsehen GmbH & Co. KG, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/woodiehoo-animal-friends-world/id1354902296
  2. WoodieHoo Birthday Party by RTL DISNEY Fernsehen GmbH & Co. KG, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/woodiehoo-birthday-party/id1475606131

Pre-Vocational Skills:

  1. Community Success Lite by Attainment Company, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/community-success-lite/id739174434 (free lite version, has IAPs. If you want all the content, get the full paid app instead)
  2. Computers at Work Lite by Attainment Company, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/computers-at-work-lite/id833882884 (free lite version, has IAPs. If you want all the content, get the full paid app instead)
  3. MatchTime Lite by Attainment Company, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/matchtime-lite/id987945960 (free lite version, has IAPs. If you want all the content, get the full paid app instead)
  4. Personal Success Lite by Attainment Company, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/personal-success-lite/id985701251 (free lite version, has IAPs. If you want all the content, get the full paid app instead)
  5. JobPro: Get Hired! by Etcetera Edutainment, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/jobpro-get-hired/id1036998640
  6. JobPro: My Life by Etcetera Edutainment, Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/jobpro-my-life/id1326276174

Safety: 

  1. Ready Set Dial by Little Bit Studio, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/ready-set-dial/id1435714699
  2. Little Bird by AVG Technologies, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/little-bird/id448923255 (Internet safety)
  3. RED CROSS – Accident prevention and first aid for children by Cruz Roja Española, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/red-cross-accident-prevention-and-first-aid-for-children/id1032660603
  4. Stewie the Duck Learns to Swim by Stew Leonard’s, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/stewie-the-duck-learns-to-swim/id514573567
  5. Sign Bingo by Timothy McLenegan, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/sign-bingo/id656984122

Sensory & Calming:

  1. Magic Fluids Lite by Mad Scientist, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/magic-fluids-lite/id1437514764 (lite version with IAPs for additional features)
  2. fluidity HD by nebulus design, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/fluidity-hd/id399403909 (free with IAPs to add more features)
  3. Fluid 2 by Fabien Sanglard, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/fluid-2/id317959717
  4. Classical Music Shapes Colors by Bret Lester, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/classical-music-shapes-colors/id963541488 (IAP to add more features)
  5. Super Stretch Yoga HD by The Adventures of Super Stretch, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/super-stretch-yoga-hd/id456108738
  6. Breathe, Think, Do with Sesame by Sesame Street, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/breathe-think-do-with-sesame/id721853597
  7. Autism 5-Point Scale EP by Minnesota Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/autism-5-point-scale-ep/id467303313
  8. Focus 1-2-3 by Oranda, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/focus-1-2-3/id954506517
  9. Kids Mindfulness Meditations by Wellbeyond Inc., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/kids-mindfulness-meditations/id1082891966 (usually has IAP for additional content but currently all free until 6/30/20)
  10. The Breathing Butterfly by Elfenworks Productions LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/the-breathing-butterfly/id975817441
  11. 1-Min Calm by For Jack and Jill, LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/1-min-calm/id997960262
  12. Calming Bottle by eSolution, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/calming-bottle/id1029767551
  13. MindShift CBT – Anxiety Canada by Anxiety Canada Association, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/mindshift-cbt-anxiety-canada/id634684825

Visual Discrimination Skills:

  1. Maxilotto Animals by SEJER, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/maxilotto-animals/id1275102102
  2. Everyday Life Lotto by SEJER, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/everyday-life-lotto/id1275102326
  3. Maxilotto Food by SEJER, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/maxilotto-food/id1275102313
  4. TVOKids Match-a Match-a Island by TVO Apps, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/tvokids-match-a-match-a-island/id751595890
  5. Princess Match: Learning Game Kids & Toddlers Free by wonderkind GmbH, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/princess-match-learning-game-kids-toddlers-free/id508464233
  6. PopPet Pop with Bato by OTATAA, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/poppet-pop-with-bato/id1064503211
  7. What´s missing here? by appp media UG, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/what-s-missing-here/id549919603
  8. Little Finder – The Hidden Object Game for Kids by Innovative Mobile Apps, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/little-finder-the-hidden-object-game-for-kids/id491990709
  9. My Little Suitcase – The Memory Board Game by Innovative Mobile Apps, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/my-little-suitcase-the-memory-board-game/id527319993 (may not work on iOS 11.0 or later)

Visual Perceptual Skills:

  1. Fill the Matrix – Place items in the correct cells by STEP BY STEP, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/fill-the-matrix-place-items-in-the-correct-cells/id1135867233
  2. Mosaics – Arrange colorful pieces to form a mosaic by STEP BY STEP, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/mosaics-arrange-colorful-pieces-to-form-a-mosaic/id1186205878
  3. Pair By Kind – Match visually related items by STEP BY STEP, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/pair-by-kind-match-visually-related-items/id1135858883
  4. LudiTab Spatial Recognition by SEJER, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/luditab-spatial-recognition/id1275104117
  5. LudiTab Geometric Shapes by SEJER, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/luditab-geometric-shapes/id1275102336
  6. LudiTab Sizes by SEJER, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/luditab-sizes/id1275104569
  7. LudiTab Numeration by SEJER, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/luditab-numeration/id1275103847
  8. Large Puzzle Firefighters by SEJER, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/large-puzzle-firefighters/id1275101358
  9. Large Puzzle Pirates by SEJER, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/large-puzzle-pirates/id1275101758
  10. Puzzle Pop HD by Duck Duck Moose LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/puzzle-pop-hd/id479407696
  11. Comomola Planets Puzzle by Comomola Studios S.L., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/comomola-planets-puzzle/id1315036689 (IAP also free)
  12. Shapes Builder – Educational tangram puzzle game for preschool children by Play Toddlers (Free Version) by PlayToddlers, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/shapes-builder-educational-tangram-puzzle-game-for/id1084234490 (free lite version, has IAPs. If you want all the content, get the full paid app instead)
  13. Very Hungry Caterpillar Shapes by StoryToys Entertainment Limited, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/very-hungry-caterpillar-shapes/id1042298797
  14. Laugh & Learn™ Shapes & Colors by Fisher-Price, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/laugh-learn-shapes-colors/id490650819
  15. RelationShapes by Vizuvizu LLC, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/relationshapes/id1143015542
  16. Piko’s Blocks – Spatial Lite by Creetah Ltd., https://apps.apple.com/us/app/pikos-blocks-spatial-lite/id1131697579 (get full paid version if you want more content)
  17. Letter Cross Tracking by Visual learning for Life, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/letter-cross-tracking/id971121786 (free with IAP for more content)
  18. Spatial Line Puzzles by Visual learning for Life, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/spatial-line-puzzles/id917127352 (free with IAP for more content)
  19. Slice & Splice Lite by Roman Timurson, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/slice-splice-lite/id590307847

Looking for apps to make your own jigsaw puzzles for specific high interest areas? Here are three apps that allow you to import pics to create your own puzzles:

  1. Puzzlfy app is my favorite for making simple puzzles: Puzzlfy – Jigsaw Puzzles by Radius60 Studios, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/puzzlfy-jigsaw-puzzles/id880679870 (may not work on iOS 11 or later).
  2. Jigsaw Puzzle Collection HD by Veraxen Ltd, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/jigsaw-puzzle-collection-hd/id642831690
  3. Jigsaw Box Puzzles by Sparkle Apps, https://apps.apple.com/us/app/jigsaw-box-puzzles/id374251470

For all of three you’ll need to save pics that you want to use to create puzzles to the Camera Roll on your iPad. The downside of these apps are the ads & IAPs but you can block them by putting the iPad into “airplane mode” after you are done downloading pics & before you open the app. It can be expensive to buy the in-app purchases to remove the ads. You’ll also want to toggle off the ability to purchase IAPs as an extra safeguard in the Settings area on your iPad.

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Want to suggest a free iOS app to be added to this list? The best way to reach me is via Facebook messaging over on my OMazing Kids page. I’m pretty picky so they need to be well designed apps and be transparent/honest about any IAPs or subscriptions. Please send the link from the USA App Store so I can download and try it out.

It took me quite a bit of time to compile this list so please “tag” OMazing Kids when sharing it on social media and do not copy/paste it onto other blogs or documents or upload it to servers. I have it available here on my blog and plan on keeping my blog up for the foreseable future.

Thanks,

Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC

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Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com


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