Archive for the ‘Social Skills’ Category

{App Reviews} The Zones of Regulation & The Zones of Regulation : Exploring Emotions apps

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{App Reviews} The Zones of Regulation & The Zones of Regulation : Exploring Emotions apps

Most of the patients that I see have Autism or other special needs that make emotional self regulation challenging for them. It’s the main reason that I sought out training in kids yoga several years ago and why I am always looking for additional tools in this area. When kids are experiencing either extreme of the zones, it is very unlikely that they will learn or gain much benefit from anything I may have planned for that session. Here are two new tools that I’ve recently added:

The Zones of Regulation by Selosoft, Inc.
https://appsto.re/us/GzayK.i, $5.99

This older app is a nice overview of the types of emotions, situations, triggers & tools associated with each of the four zones of regulation. I love the inclusion of self regulation breathing techniques (lazy 8 breathing & six sides of breathing) and that you can go directly to each of them. I also like picture studio and the game-like feel to the app. The match the face activity was helpful but also a little frustrating at times since it seemed a bit too rigid on emotions that could really fit in more than one zone. I was excited to see wording about expected vs. unexpected responses and info about “size of the problem” but then was disappointed that there was no way to directly to the “size of the problem” illustration and explanation later. It would be very helpful for this to be added either to this app or to their more recent app since that is a very frequent issue that I have to address with patients. It should also be noted that this original app doesn’t have any voiceovers so a child either needs to be able to read or have an adult read the content to them.

More info about the app: http://www.thezonesofregulation.com/the-zones-of-regulation.html

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The Zones of Regulation : Exploring Emotions by Selosoft, Inc.
https://appsto.re/us/l0CN9.i, $9.99

I really liked this second app as an extension of the concepts introduced in the original app. This newer app has bright graphics, high quality voiceovers, explanations of all aspects of the app, a less rigid interpretation of where certain situations might fit within the zones and often gives examples of how they would fit in multiple zones, the ability to set up multiple users, the option to add or delete tools to fit individual needs, a fun basketball game that can be easily unlocked by playing through other areas of the app, and is full of common situations that kids may encounter and several convey the importance of helping others and feeling empathy. I also liked that you can tap a star in the corner of many scenarios for a reference of where to look for additional information and the ability to graph zones across the day. I especially liked the repeated message that all zones are a natural part of life. A wish for a future app update would be the ability to toggle off the food fight scenario, skip past it or to have it replaced with something else. I also hope they add content regarding “size of the problem” since it was briefly mentioned in the original app and this is a very common issue that I deal with in sessions.

More about the app: http://www.thezonesofregulation.com/the-zones-of-regulation-exploring-emotions—available-now.html
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Since the majority of the patients on my caseload have Autism, the combination of these two apps will be very useful tools in my SLP toolbox. I will be watching closely for future app updates to continue to make these tools even better.

FYI… at the time of this post you can get both apps in a bundle for $12.99: The Zones of Regulation : Complete Bundle by Selosoft, Inc., https://appsto.re/us/YVxaab.i

Learn more about The Zones of Regulation: http://www.thezonesofregulation.com/index.html

Follow them on social media: https://www.facebook.com/pg/zonesofregulation

Teaching tools: http://www.thezonesofregulation.com/teaching-tools.html

I love this post “All the Zones are OK! Tips for Managing the Zones You’re In”: https://www.socialthinking.com/Articles?name=all-the-zones-are-ok

And this one: https://www.crisisprevention.com/Blog/October-2016/emotional-self-regulation
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Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist
Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC – inclusive wellness & educational activities for kids of all abilities
Facebook Messaging for OMazing Kids:
http://m.me/OMazingKidsYoga
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Boardmaker Share: http://www.boardmakershare.com/Community/FriendsProfile/10916/Angela-Moorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com
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Angela Moorad is the founder of OMazing Kids, LLC and is an ASHA certified & licensed pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist and Kids Yoga Teacher with 27 years experience working in a variety of settings (early intervention, schools, teletherapy & a nonprofit pediatric rehab hospital for children with developmental disabilities). She is an app beta tester for educational & therapeutic app developers and loves sharing info about great apps, products, books & toys to use with kids of all abilities.

{Free Printable} Soda Pop Head: Things That Help Me Cool Down & Things That Make Me Fizz

Soda Pop Head - free printables on OMazing Kids

 

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Saw this cool idea on Instagram for the book “Soda Pop Head” but couldn’t find any free printables for it so of course I made my own.

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Free 2-page PDF printable: https://omazingkidsyoga.files.wordpress.com/2016/08/soda-pop-head-free-printable-from-omazing-kids.pdf

 

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Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist
Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC – inclusive wellness & educational activities for kids of all abilities
Home E-Mail: amoorad1@juno.com
Facebook Messaging for OMazing Kids: https://www.facebook.com/messages/17426452595789
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga
AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/amoorad
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/amoorad1
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/110305433538768736741
Boardmaker Share: http://www.boardmakershare.com/Community/FriendsProfile/10916/Angela-Moorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com
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Angela Moorad is the founder of OMazing Kids, LLC and is an ASHA certified & licensed pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist and Kids Yoga Teacher with over 26 years experience working in a variety of settings (early intervention, schools, teletherapy & a nonprofit pediatric rehab hospital for children with developmental disabilities). She is an app beta tester for educational & therapeutic app developers and loves sharing info about great apps, products, books & toys to use with kids of all abilities.
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{please 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}

Adapted Games for Inclusive Play: Candy Land

Adapted Games For Inclusive Play - Candy Land

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Adapted Games for Inclusive Play: Candy Land

I’ve been looking for a way to make the Candy Land game accessible for kids with special needs and found a great solution by combing an app, a specific version of the board game and ideas from an old journal article and a few websites!

Who knew that there has been SO many different versions of this game over the years and that each version has slightly different pictures on the “picture squares” in the game?

Well there has been and I was determined to get the version of the board game that matched up to this app. Could have sworn that I already had the Candy Land board game but looked through my entire stash of materials and couldn’t find it. If I had found it and it wasn’t the right version, my plan was to take screenshots of the pink picture squares from the app and attach them to the game board to make it match.
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After extensive research I finally figured out which version of the Candy Land board game matches this app. I bought “Candy Land – The Kingdom of Sweets Board Game” (2010) on Amazon for $7.49: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00000DMF5 and this app for $.99 (Candy Cards by Panther Technology,  https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/candy-cards/id554983778?mt=8 , iOS 3.2 or later, Universal app that works on iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch). I was initially leery of the app since it had not been updated since 2012 but at the price of $.99 decided to try it out. I’m pleased to report that it worked fine on my iPad Air (running iOS 9.3.1) and on my iPhone 5 (running iOS 9.3.2). The only quirky thing I noted when using the app on an iPhone is that the app did not adjust to landscape orientation and had a small black band of dead space at the top and bottom of the screen.

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Check out all the options in this app’s settings area:

Under “Accessibility” settings:

  •  “Safety Time”: For kids who tend to tap repetitively, you can lock the screen for 2, 3, 5 or 10 seconds after drawing each card. That means focus can stay on the game instead of “stimming” on the iPad screen.
  • The “Target” feature can be centered, appear at random places, or even move around the screen if you are wanting to work on “targeted touch”. When “target” is toggled off, you can tap anywhere on the screen to “draw” a card (great for kids with more severe motor impairments).

Under “Play Settings”, you can toggle on/off the background music, the card count, and sound effects and select one of four backgrounds (grey metal, orange, candy stripe and my personal fave… a calming green).

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See more about the app on the developer’s website: http://panthertechnology.com/products/panther-candy-cards/

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So for the bargain price of $8.48 I now have a version of this classic kids game that is more inclusive of kids of a wide range of abilities and needs. I plan on modifying play further when I am in a group or have parents and/or siblings present by playing as “teams” where one teammate’s job is to “draw” the card using the app and the other teammate’s job is to move the game piece. Another option in a 1-on-1 session would be for you and the child to use it as a “cooperative” game and work together as a team to move one of the game pieces to the castle.

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I am also planning on incorporating the ideas for adaptations & task analysis from the journal article “Everyone Can Play!: Adapting the Candy Land Board Game TEACHING Exceptional Children July-August 1996 28: 28-33” (yes I realize the article is 20 years old but the concepts are still valid today). I saved a PDF of the full article out on Dropbox: https://www.dropbox.com/s/1p1pimgnjmm52wp/Everyone%20Can%20Play%20-%20Adapting%20the%20Candy%20Land%20Board%20Game.pdf?dl=0

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{No Prep SLP Tips: Candy Land} https://omazingkidsllc.com/2016/07/28/no-prep-slp-tips-candy-land/

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Additional ideas:

Check out these great Pinterest boards full of game adaptation ideas:

And lots of materials created by SLPs on TPT: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Browse/PreK-12-Subject-Area/Speech-Therapy/Search:candy+land. I especially like this self esteem conversation prompts freebie: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Self-Esteem-Prompts-for-Candy-Land-1152578

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Oooh… just saw this fun idea to combine Candy Land + the Name That Word Game. Love finding new ways to use materials that I already own! I got my copy of that game several years ago at a back-to-school sale at a teacher supply store but saw that it’s available on Amazon.

http://millionsoffingerprints.blogspot.com/2013/05/today-in-speech-therapywe-played-candy.html

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Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist
Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC – inclusive wellness & educational activities for kids of all abilities
Home E-Mail: amoorad1@juno.com
Facebook Messaging for OMazing Kids: https://www.facebook.com/messages/17426452595789
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga
AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/amoorad
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/amoorad1
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/110305433538768736741
Boardmaker Share: http://www.boardmakershare.com/Community/FriendsProfile/10916/Angela-Moorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com
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Angela Moorad is the founder of OMazing Kids, LLC and is an ASHA certified & licensed pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist and Kids Yoga Teacher with over 26 years experience working in a variety of settings (early intervention, schools, teletherapy & a nonprofit pediatric rehab hospital for children with developmental disabilities). She is an app beta tester for educational & therapeutic app developers and loves sharing info about great apps, products, books & toys to use with kids of all abilities.
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{please 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}

{Four Faves} 4 apps from Virtual Speech Center: Apraxia RainbowBee, Articulation Games, Social Norms & Social Skills with Billy

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{App Review} Circles App: Social Boundaries & Relationships by James Stanfield Co., Inc.

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{App Review} Circles App: Social Boundaries & Relationships by James Stanfield Co., Inc.

The Circles App™ is an innovative way to teach children that the degree of closeness they have with other people and how they touch them, depends on the kind of relationship they have with them. It is an essential tool for social skills learning, especially for kids, teens, and young adults with special needs, intellectual disabilities, and individuals on the autism spectrum. With a colorful, interactive relationship graph, The Circles App™ teaches:

  • appropriate social interactions in relation to TOUCH: who gets a hug, who gets high-fives, who gets fist bumps, and more!
  • intimacy boundaries to help prevent abuse and exploitation
  • how to recognize and practice boundary limits for healthy mutual relationships

I love how this app breaks this concept down into concrete visual sections! It does a good job of showing the difference between community workers in the red circle vs. other strangers in the red stranger space. I also like how it includes fist bumps and bro hugs as current ways that kids greet each other. This will be a fabulous tool in my toolbox as I work with with patients who have difficulty understanding social boundaries and those who are at high risk for being taken advantage of. The app is easy to customize with pictures that are meaningful to that individual. It is designed to be appropriate for a wide range of ages.

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App Store: https://appsto.re/us/6LK58.i, iOS 8.4 or later, iPad only, $24.99

Website: http://circlesapp.com

Tutorial: http://circlesapp.com/circles-app-tutorial/

Download a FREE Circles App User Guide with app instructions, FAQs, and general notes on how you can make the App work for you: http://eepurl.com/bULTWP

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/stanfieldcompany
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JSTANFIELDCO
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/stanfieldco/circles-app-intimacy-relationships-social-boundari/
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Disclaimer: I received this app via a promo code from the developer. No compensation was received to review it and my opinions are strictly my own.

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Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist
Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC – inclusive wellness & educational activities for kids of all abilities
Home E-Mail: amoorad1@juno.com
Facebook Messaging for OMazing Kids: https://www.facebook.com/messages/17426452595789
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga
AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/amoorad
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/amoorad1
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/110305433538768736741
Boardmaker Share: http://www.boardmakershare.com/Community/FriendsProfile/10916/Angela-Moorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com
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Angela Moorad is the founder of OMazing Kids, LLC and is an ASHA certified & licensed pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist and Kids Yoga Teacher with over 26 years experience working in a variety of settings (early intervention, schools, teletherapy & a nonprofit pediatric rehab hospital for children with developmental disabilities). She is an app beta tester for educational & therapeutic app developers and loves sharing info about great apps, products, books & toys to use with kids of all abilities.
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{please 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}

{Awesome Book} “Social Skills Matter!, Grades PK – 2: Social Narrative Mini-Books” by Christine Schwab & Kasandra S. Flora, M.S., CCC-SLP

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Wow! Look what arrived today: “Social Skills Matter!, Grades PK-2: Social Narrative Mini-Books” by Christine Schwab & Kasandra S. Flora, M.S., CCC-SLP.

I’m very impressed with this book full of 84 reproducible social skill mini-books + award certificates. I bought my copy on Amazon for $24.54 with free shipping. That’s a bargain at $.29 per social story. It was co-authored by a SLP and by how well written they are I would guess that she has extensive experience working with kids with Autism. My go-to resources these days are mainly things I can grab and go. Yes I occasionally write my own social stories to fit very specific needs but having a book like this is worth it’s weight in gold for a busy SLP. Can’t wait to use these in OMazing Kids speech-language therapy 🙂

http://www.amazon.com/Social-Skills-Matter-Grades-Mini-Books/dp/1483800156
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See a more extensive peek inside the book on the publisher’s website: http://bit.ly/27igQgh

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Including a few screenshots here from that preview:

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It’s very important to be respectful of kids sensory needs when teaching eye contact. I often teach kids how to approximate eye contact by periodically glancing at anything in the facial region to “check in”. Love this illustration from the book:

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Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist
Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC – inclusive wellness & educational activities for kids of all abilities
Home E-Mail: amoorad1@juno.com
Facebook Messaging for OMazing Kids: https://www.facebook.com/messages/17426452595789
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga
AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/amoorad
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/amoorad1
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/110305433538768736741
Boardmaker Share: http://www.boardmakershare.com/Community/FriendsProfile/10916/Angela-Moorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com
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Angela Moorad is the founder of OMazing Kids, LLC and is an ASHA certified & licensed pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist and Kids Yoga Teacher with over 26 years experience working in a variety of settings (early intervention, schools, teletherapy & a nonprofit pediatric rehab hospital for children with developmental disabilities). She is an app beta tester for educational & therapeutic app developers and loves sharing info about great apps, products, books & toys to use with kids of all abilities.
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{please 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}

{OMazing Kids Book Review} “Hoot and Peep” by Lita Judge

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I’m a huge fan of Lita’s books so I was thrilled to have the opportunity to review this new one. Here’s what I LOVE about it:
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  • Gorgeous rich illustrations in deep calming colors.
  • Great message of learning to see things from another point of view and experiencing the joy of new adventures. While this book depicts a sibling relationship it could be easily expanded to topics on friendships.
  • Large easy to read text on each 2-page spread. I love that some pages have minimal text so the focus can be on the details in the illustrations.
  • Peep’s sounds are fun for kids to attempt to imitate (schweep, schweeepty peep, schweepity peep oooo ding dong boing, dingity dong, slippity slap, etc…).
  • The facial expressions and body language of Hoot and Peep lend themselves well to use in speech therapy sessions targeting social skills, feelings & inferencing.
  • As an added bonus, there are a few opportunities for kids yoga activities based on the illustrations and text: owl, rooftop partners, cross crawl hike, crescent moon, bell mindfulness activity, bird, mouse, gargoyle (dragon breath), up dog, bridge.
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About the book: In the night skies above Paris, an adorable young owl teaches her older brother about the power of imagination—and the unconditional love between siblings. Hoot the owl is very excited for his little sister, Peep, to join him on the cathedral rooftops. She’s finally old enough to learn all his big brother owly wisdom: First, owls say hooo. Second, they always say hooo. Lastly, they ONLY say hooo! But why would Peep say hooo when she could say schweeepty peep or dingity dong? Why would she speak when she could sing? As she explores the breathtaking Parisian cityscape, Peep discovers so many inspiring sights and sounds—the ring of cathedral bells, the slap of waves on stone—that she can’t help but be swept up in the magic of it all. Hoot doesn’t understand Peep’s awe, until he takes a pause to listen . . . and realizes that you’re never too old to learn a little something new.

Age Range: 3 – 5 years
Grade Level: Preschool – Kindergarten
Hardcover: 40 pages
Publisher: Dial Books (March 1, 2016)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0525428372
ISBN-13: 978-0525428374
Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 0.2 x 10.2 inches
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Here are a few pics to show you a sneak peek inside the book:

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See more at: http://www.litajudge.net/hoot-and-peep/
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Get 3 free printable coloring pages in this PDF on the author’s website: http://www.litajudge.net/_downloads/HP_ColoringPages.pdf
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Another free coloring page:

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See the story behind the making of the book: https://vimeo.com/130139656

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Author’s Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/lita.judge

Available for purchase on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Hoot-Peep-Lita-Judge/dp/0525428372/. Other purchasing option links on the author’s website.
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Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist
Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC – inclusive wellness & educational activities for kids of all abilities
Home E-Mail: amoorad1@juno.com
Facebook Messaging for OMazing Kids: https://www.facebook.com/messages/17426452595789
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga
AppPeeps Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/amoorad
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/amoorad1
Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/110305433538768736741
Boardmaker Share: http://www.boardmakershare.com/Community/FriendsProfile/10916/Angela-Moorad
Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com
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Angela Moorad is the founder of OMazing Kids, LLC and is an ASHA certified & licensed pediatric Speech-Language Pathologist and Kids Yoga Teacher with over 26 years experience working in a variety of settings (early intervention, schools, teletherapy & a nonprofit pediatric rehab hospital for children with developmental disabilities). She is an app beta tester for educational & therapeutic app developers and loves sharing info about great apps, products, books & toys to use with kids of all abilities.
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{please 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}