{App Review} Social Detective Intermediate


{App Review} The new Social Detective Intermediate app is the next step after using the Social Detective Beginner app and a companion to the You are a Social Detective book By Michelle Garcia Winner and Pamela Crooke. This Social Detective Intermediate app picks up where the Beginner leaves off and focuses on decoding the thoughts and emotions of people students interact with. Using this information, students will make smart guesses to predict what those people might do or say next. Below are definitions for vocabulary used in this App:

Smart Guesses: This is when we use all of our tools (remembering, seeing, hearing, knowing and feeling) to figure things out and then make a guess based on what we know about the world. Smart guesses are “expected” and make others have good thoughts about us because they know we are trying to figure things out!

Social Detective Tools: We all have social detective tools that we can use all of the time to help us figure out people and places. These super important tools are: Eyes, Ears and Brains and of course, understanding feelings of others. (Often feelings are represented with a picture of a heart)

Social Thinker: Each of us is a “social thinker” every day, each time we are around other people. It means we are always aware that people are around us and having thoughts about each of our behaviors. We are social thinkers, even when people are not talking to or playing with us. All of us should be social thinkers each day.

Within The Social Detective Intermediate app:

* The Notebook Exercises-Allow students to practice being a social decoder, by making a smart guess on the thoughts, emotions, and guesses the characters in the social scenes are experiencing.
* The Flashlight Exercises-Allow students to practice being a social detective, and identify what is seen, or heard, to help character in the social scene make a smart guess, figure out what others are thinking and finally, predict what they will do next.


App Store: Social Detective Intermediate by Social Skill Builder, Inc., https://appsto.re/us/UWVvab.i, $24.99, iPad only.

If you are wanting to purchase both Social Detective apps, take a look at this app bundle where you can save $10.00: Social Detective Bundle (Beginner and Intermediate) by Social Skill Builder, Inc., https://appsto.re/us/N013ib.i, $39.99, iPad only.
More about “social thinking”:


What I liked:
* this app is a nice “next step” after kids have learned about expected vs. unexpected behaviors in the first app
* the use of video modeling of kids in real life situations
* the ability to set up multiple users with different avatars
* dragging answers to the thought bubbles and heart was a nice way to depict thinking about what is in the scene
* periodic encouragement screen to show where you are towards finishing the app
* the difficulty increases as you work through the app
* the ability to resume a test that was started but not completed in a previous session

Wishes for a future app update:
* have a more pleasant sound for correct answers. The current one is abrupt, loud and bothered several of my patients. It would also be nice to have a choice of feedback for incorrect responses.
* update the videos in both apps in this series to reflect current technology & diversity and to have clearer images and clearer audio.
* offer a way to go directly to a specific video. A menu of videos with a short description would help therapists who have limited time in sessions and need to target skills most needed for that particular patient.
* offer a way to replay missed items in a later session.
* add a “pause” button so items can be discussed rather than automatically advancing.
* offer the option to select how many potential answers are presented. I have several patients that would have done better starting out with a field of 2 choices and then advancing gradually to 3 and then 4 choices.
* fine tune the drag and drop feature in the app. It occasionally took a couple of attempts to get answers to “stick” when placed. This became a little frustrating for a couple of my patients.
FYI…. this is an app that should be used with a therapist or teacher. If for some reason a patient or student is using the app independently then I suggest using Guided Access to lock the unsecured links to the App Store and websites in the top right corner of the home page seen after picking your avatar. These links are helpful for adults but not appropriate for kids to navigate to on their own.

Overall both of the apps in the Social Detective series are helpful and recommended for therapists or teachers working on social thinking skills with their patients or students. I’m glad to have these apps in my speechie toolbox 😃
Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist
Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC – inclusive wellness & educational activities for kids of all abilities
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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 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.