Posts Tagged ‘Autism Awareness Month’

2016 Autism Awareness Month: AAC App Sale Roundup & Tips

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Here is a round up of the AAC app sales that have been announced so far for Autism Awareness Month. I have been announcing them in individual posts on my OMazing Kids Facebook page but thought a post listing them all might be helpful. AAC app sales are pretty rare. So this is a great opportunity to get an app that you have been considering:

FYI…
* Always verify an app price BEFORE purchasing it. App prices often change at 10:00pm CST (adjust for your time zone) but can change at any time without any notice.
* These app sales and prices will be in the USA App Store. Some apps may be on sale in other countries but I have no means of verifying that since I only have access to the USA App Store.
* If you plan on purchasing an app during a sale, it is wise to get it early in the sale to insure you don’t miss the sale pricing.
* Occasionally app developers decide to start a sale early or extend a sale but you can’t count on that happening.

Additional important info:

* Most app developers have a Facebook group for that app. I highly suggest joining these groups for an incredible amount of support from the app developers as well as other parents, therapists & teachers. Every group has it’s own “culture”. Some are very open to discussing any topic. Others are pretty strict about only posting info or questions directly related to that particular app. Here is a list of the FB groups:

– aacorn: https://www.facebook.com/groups/aacornapp/?ref=ts&fref=ts
– Avaz: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1404976513132058/?ref=ts&fref=ts
– Clicker Communicator: https://www.facebook.com/groups/Clicker.Communicator/?fref=ts
– Dynavox: https://www.facebook.com/groups/675299919223246/?fref=ts
– LAMP WFL: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1541091616125345/?ref=ts&fref=ts
– Proloquo2Go for Professionals: https://www.facebook.com/groups/256837297733511/?ref=ts&fref=ts
– Proloquo2Go for Parents: https://www.facebook.com/groups/241684205905600/?ref=ts&fref=ts
– Proloquo2Go & Proloquo4Text Adult Users: https://www.facebook.com/groups/192898234141275/?ref=br_rs
– Speak for Yourself: https://www.facebook.com/groups/273873326092019/?ref=ts&fref=ts
– Tobii: https://www.facebook.com/groups/tobiiuk/?ref=br_rs
– TouchChat: https://www.facebook.com/groups/touchchatapp/?ref=ts&fref=ts

I have suggested to the developers of the GoTalk Now app that a group be started but so far I’ve only seen a parent led one in Swedish. I have also suggested to the developer of the new Total Talk AAC app that they start a group. He was very open to the idea so I hope to see that soon.

There are also numerous other AAC-related Facebook groups. Again each having it’s own culture and dynamic. I’m not going to list all of those here…. but if you are a SLP, I definitely suggest joining the AAC for the SLP group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1539830846285663/.

* All states in the USA are supposed to have an Assistive Technology Lending Library program where parents & professionals can borrow AAC devices, iPads with AAC apps & other AT for short-term trial. It’s a great way to try various options out before making purchasing decisions. There are lots of great AAC apps…. but like anything there is no magical solution that meets every child’s specific needs. That’s why doing a good feature-match and trial of options is critical. I highly suggest an AAC eval with a SLP. The AT Lending Library in your area should know of folks in your area who do them.

Find the AT Lending Library in your state: http://www.ataporg.org/states.html. Also can look on: http://www.resnaprojects.org/allcontacts/statewidecontacts.html

* If you are a parent of a child with special needs and you are either tired of waiting on professionals being the gatekeepers for your child’s AAC options or have decided that don’t want to wait on an AAC evaluation, I still highly suggest doing a little “homework” to help you consider whether or not a particular AAC is a good match for your child before purchasing it. You can make informed purchasing decisions by watching videos of that app in use, reading parent blogs, joining the Facebook groups I listed above, find someone in your area who has the app, etc.

* Before commenting that these AAC apps are “so expensive” even on sale, please consider that “expensive” is a relative term. Compared to traditional AAC devices that cost thousands of dollars, these apps even at full price are a bargain and many parents end up purchasing an app themselves rather than continuing to wait for someone else to meet their child’s needs. The developers of these AAC apps have continued to invest their time and $$$ to add improvements to the app and pay licensing fees for high quality voices and symbol sets so we should not ever expect one of these apps to be free or cheaper than these sale prices. That being said, if the sale price is still out of reach for your budget then you may want to look for funding assistance. The AT lending programs I mentioned above are typically good resources for info about grant options for AT / AAC in that state.

* To find the pricing history of any app in the USA App Store, search for that app on this website, tap on the name of the app and then scroll down to the bottom of the page: http://appshopper.com

* Disclaimer: I do not have a financial relationship with any app developer or AAC company. I am only sharing this info to help spread the word to get more AAC options into the lives of kids who need it. My “favorite” AAC app is the one that has the features that best match that individual child’s needs at that particular point in time.

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There may be other AAC apps go on sale. For the most current info, be sure to “like” my OMazing Kids Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga – see this post for details on adjusting your settings to see all the posts: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2015/12/09/tip-how-to-get-all-the-facebook-posts-from-omazing-kids-and-other-pages/) & join my AppPeeps Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/OMazingKidsAppPeeps/)
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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
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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 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}

Review & A Way To Give – Giveaway: The Pocket Occupational Therapist for Families of Children with Special Needs + Sound-Eaze & School-Eaze CD’s

Pocket OT & CD's a way to give giveaway

A perfect trio of products to celebrate April as National Occupational Therapy Month & Autism Awarness Month!

Product Description:  

The Pocket Occupational Therapist for Families of Children With Special Needs by Cara Koscinski

  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Jessica Kingsley Pub; 1 edition (December 15, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849059322
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849059329
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.3 x 8.5 inches

If you are unsure about what occupational therapy (OT) is and how it can help your child, this accessible overview is for you. Answering all of the common questions about the issues an occupational therapist might address with a child with special needs, including core muscle strength, feeding, fine motor skills, sensory sensitivities, transitions and life-skills, this book also offers simple activities to practice at home that are inexpensive, fun and, most-importantly, OT-approved.

This will be an illuminating and essential guide for parents and carers of children with physical and developmental disabilities or parents of children in rehabilitation from illness or injury. Professionals who want to learn more about the principles and practicalities of occupational therapy will also find it useful.

Table of Contents

TOC Pocket OT

See a fabulous review on Special Needs Book Review : http://www.specialneedsbookreview.com/2013/03/27/interview-cara-koscinski-mot-mom-of-children-with-special-needs-speaker-author-and-entrepreneur/

Here’s what I love about the book:

  • includes important details in a concise, easy to understand format that makes this book very parent-friendly. I’ve worked with lots of great OT’s over the past 23 years of being a SLP so I know quite a bit about what they do & why they do what they do. But even I learned some new things reading this book. Don’t let the small size fool you. This 144 page book is packed with loads of info!
  • explains “why” certain skills & activities are important.
  • explains “why” kids engage in certain behaviors.
  • lots of info about picky eating & food aversions
  • lots of info about sensory processing
  • great developmental checklists
  • large easy to read font
  • it’s filled with tons of great “Out of the Pocket Activities”….. these are the real gems in this book! I work with lots of kids with Autism Spectrum Disorders & Sensory Processing Disorders. The “Out of the Pocket Activities” will be great to incorporate into my therapy sessions & to share with parents.

Sound-Eaze CD

This CD was written by Cara Koscinski (an Occupational Therapist) and Kimberly Josephs (a Music Therapist) as a fun way for parents, teachers and therapists to help children with auditory sensitivity and fear of loud noises. It combines vocals and rhythm with sounds that can be upsetting to many children. The music and rhythm are eased out until only the sound remains. Allowing your child to adjust the volume may give the feeling that he/she is in control of the sound.

Encourage your child to begin at a low volume and gradually increase it. It is our goal that your child has fun while developing tolerance for loud noises.

Sounds included are: baby cry, vacuum cleaner, fireworks, dog bark, siren, phone ring, thunder, fire alarm, blender, hairdryer, lawnmower, toilet flush. Each is about 3-4 minutes long.

School-Eaze

This CD was written by Cara Koscinski (an Occupational Therapist) and Kimberly Josephs (a Music Therapist) as a fun way for parents, teachers and therapists to help children with auditory sensitivity and fear of loud noises. It combines rhythm with sounds that can be upsetting to many children. This unique collection gives children control of the sounds and lets them know exactly what to expect to hear at school!

Encourage your child to begin at a low volume and gradually increase it. It is our goal that your child has fun while developing tolerance for loud noises.

School-Eaze includes the following sounds: school fire drill, cafeteria, bus ride, gym class, changing class bell, swim meet, classroom noise/group of people talking, and field trips such as baseball game, restaurant, carnival, walking to school/construction site, parade, party, movies, and stock car race. Each is about 3-4 minutes long.

Here’s what I love about the CD’s:

  • love that each song is a new twist on a familiar tune. Building upon a familiar tune will help pair something a child may already enjoy with something that they are learning to tolerate.
  • many kids with ASD, SPD and other special needs are fearful of or sensitive to particular sounds. I love the concept of the child being in control of the volume so they can experience being in control of the sound.
  • love that each song starts out with just the tune & rythym. The sound that the child is learning to tolerate is gradually faded in. And then the tune/rhythm is gradually faded out until only the sound remains. This transition starts happening about halfway through each song.
  • The company is very clear that these CD’s are NOT part of a formal therapeutic listening program but rather are a fun way to help kids develop a tolerance for noises they may encounter in their lives at home & school.

Purchase: book publisher’s website: http://www.jkp.com/catalogue/book/9781849059329, CD’s: http://www.route2greatness.com/ & http://pocketoccupationaltherapist.com/Products.html (via PayPal)

Also available on Amazon:  book – http://www.amazon.com/Occupational-Therapist-Families-Children-Special/dp/1849059322; CD’s http://www.amazon.com/Autism–Sound-Sound-Children-Noises/dp/B000B5UIOW & http://www.amazon.com/Route-Greatness-School-Eaze-CD-Route2Greatness/dp/B000B5SYDY

Websites: http://pocketoccupationaltherapist.com/, http://www.route2greatness.com/. Also connect with them on Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/PocketOT, https://www.facebook.com/pages/Route2Greatness-LLC/131330716891115; Twitter: https://twitter.com/pocketot; Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/pocketot/; Teachers Pay Teachers: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Store/Special-Needs-Kidstore; Blog: http://route2greatness.wordpress.com/

Cara has two sons with special needs. See more about Cara’s story here: http://pocketoccupationaltherapist.com/Author_Info.html and on pages 30-31 in this e-magazine: http://somethingspecialmagazine.squarespace.com/spring-issue-savannah

Disclaimer: I received a free sample of this product to facilitate my review.  Opinions expressed are my own.Starting in 2013, a new component of reviews & giveaways hosted on OMazing Kids is that a review will be added on Amazon.com (for products sold on that site). See my Amazon profile at: https://www.amazon.com/gp/pdp/profile/A1JKVLELLSX7FD?ie=UTF8&ref_=cm_aya_bb_pdp.

A Way to Give - Giveaway

How to enter the A Way to Give – Giveaway:

  • Required Entry Method: Enter via the “Giveaways” tab on the OMazing Kids – Contests & Giveaways Facebook page (http://a.pgtb.me/plpbTf) & mention why this book would be helpful to you. Also nominate a friend, relative, teacher, therapist, school, clinic, library, etc… it can be any individual (other than yourself) or setting that you feel could benefit from having the book + both CD’s & tell us why they would benefit from having them (details will count in selecting the winner) (comments must be in English; must include full first & last name; must use respectful people-first language, 1 entry per person).
  • Bonus Entry Option: Like all 4 of these Facebook pages: OMazing Kids, The Pocket Occupational TherapistRoute2Greatness, LLC & Special Education Resources from Jessica Kingsley Publishers (comment here on this blog post to let me know you did). Facebook fans of all 4 pages are then entitled to the following bonus entry options:
    1. Invite some friends to “like” the OMazing Kids Facebook page (comment here on this blog post to let me know you did)
    2. Share this review on Facebook & include a @OMazing Kids to tag my page – (comment here on this blog post to let me know you did)
    3. Tweet the #SpecialNeeds #Autism #giveaway on Twitter with a @amoorad link – (comment here on this blog post to let me know you did)
  • Helpful Info & Tips: I use the “Giveaways” tab because it saves me the step having to obtain your mailing address – the info you complete on the tab comes directly to me via an e-mail. FYI…. I use a free app from Shortstack for that tab and have no control over technical difficulties either on their end or on Facebook. The Facebook tab may not work on a cell phone. If you experience that, try again on a computer. Make sure you are logged in as yourself (not a page) when using the tab. In the event that you experience difficulties with the FB entry tab, please e-mail me specific details so I can attempt to fix it. E-mail to: amoorad1@juno.com . The entry deadline may be extended at the sole discretion of OMazing Kids in the event of prolonged entry tab problems

Entry Deadline: 11:59pm CST on April 15, 2013 .

Rules of Participation:

  • Must be 18 years or older with a valid e-mail address.
  • Only USA entries are being allowed for this particular giveaway.
  • Employees or family members of OMazing Kids, LLC or the product’s company are not eligible.
  • No purchase required.
  • Comments submitted via the Enter Giveaways Here…. tab on Facebook may be copied & pasted into the blog post.
  • Odds of winning will depend on the number of eligible entries received.
  • The winner will be chosen via a drawing of valid entries on April 16, 2013.
  • The winner will receive one copy of the book. One copy of the book + both CD’s will also be sent to the person or place they nominated in their winning entry (I know this is a bit out-of-the box & different than most typical giveaways where the person who enters wins all the “stuff”.  This is the new “A Way To Give” portion of giveaways on OMazing Kids. I was inspired to make giveaways more meaningful after this experience. Think of it as a way to plant some seeds.)
  • The winners will be notified via e-mail, will be posted on the blog post & will be posted on the OMazing Kids Facebook page. The company offering the prize may also post the winner’s name on their website, blog, Facebook page and/or other social media sites at their discretion.
  • The winner’s address will be forwarded to the company and they will be mailing the prizes directly to the winners. Any questions about the prize should be directed to the company.
  • Prize Value: book: $19.95, CD’s: $16.99 each

Other Legal Stuff: I know it’s just a book & CD’s but just to be safe here is all the legal stuff…

This giveaway is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You are providing your information to OMazing Kids, LLC and not to Facebook. The information you provide will only be used for our internal purposes in relation to the administration of the giveaway. Your information will NOT be sold to any outside parties.

Indemnification/Hold Harmless: By participating, entrants agree: (a) to the decisions of OMazing Kids, LLC, which shall be final in all respects; (b) to release, discharge, and hold harmless OMazing Kids, LLC and its respective representatives and agents from all liability, injuries, losses or damages of any kind to persons or property resulting in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, from the acceptance, possession, misuse or use of a prize, or from participation in and/or entry into the Contest or any Contest-related activity and for acceptance, delivery, or use of any prize; (c) that the foregoing parties have neither made nor are in any manner responsible or liable for any warranty, representation or guaranty, expressed or implied, in fact or in law, relating to any prize.

Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, IAYT, RCYP-2

Speech-Language Pathologist

Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC – inclusive wellness activities for kids of all abilities

Radiant Child Yoga Certified – Levels 1 & 2

E-Mail: amoorad1@juno.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga

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Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/amoorad

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Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/OMazingKids/

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Blog: http://omazingkidsllc.com

OMazing Kids LLC is an organization that promotes inclusive wellness activities for kids of all abilities. The blog and social media pages share information about books, DVD’s, CD’s, games and other products specifically designed for kids wellness, mindfulness and relaxation, product reviews & giveaways, lesson plan & activity ideas, research, kids wellness in the news and a connection corner with listings of individuals doing adapted yoga and those offering trainings.

NOTE: Please ignore any ads that appear below the crayons divider bar. This is a free blog site & I have no control over ads appearing here.

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