Raising a child is tough. Very tough. Any parent can tell you that. Raising a child with autism has its own set of challenges.
Children with autism require a different kind of attention in order to help them develop. We will turn to the experts at Autism Speaks for an explanation of Autism:
“Autism is a general term used to describe a group of complex developmental brain disorders known as Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD). The other pervasive developmental disorders are PDD-NOS (Pervasive Developmental Disorder – Not Otherwise Specified), Asperger Syndrome, Rett Syndrome and Childhood Disintegrative Disorder. Many parents and professionals refer to this group as Autism Spectrum Disorders.”
That said, there are already plenty of applications designed around helping children, and adults, with autism learn and develop communication and social skills. They may not be the end-all, be-all solution for a parent, but it’s just one more way to help them raise their child.
Hit the jump for the app list:
1) First Then Visual Schedule
Scheduling is important for anyone. Maybe more so for someone with special needs, as the stability will help make things easier for them. Also in this app is a reward system for positive behavior. The scheduling is all visual, which the app makers say can help increase independence.
Many of the apps we will feature today are designed for users that are non-verbal. We are featuring a handful of those because communication is key. And because everyone is different, what works for one person may not work for another. Grace is the first of the apps. It uses images to help non-verbal users communicate.
AutismXpress is an app designed to help people with autism recognize facial expressions and express their emotions. This, according to the app makers, is because people with autism often have difficulties understanding facial expressions and the emotions behind them.
This app is in the much higher price range (at $190) but those who have purchased it have said great things about it. It’s another app that helps non-verbal people communicate more easily. It gives them pictures and words that allow them to piece together full sentences.
5) See. Touch. Learn.
This app actually gets installed on the iPads at Apple retail stores. It’s a free download. The app makers say that it’s designed by professionals and specifically for those with autism. It’s affordable compared to some of the other apps and it helps users learn new words and ways to express themselves. Worth a serious look.
Learning With Apps
Apps are available for just about anyone and anything you can imagine. Many of the above would likely fall into the education category. Some children’s needs must be addressed in different ways. That’s what many of these apps are designed to do.
Have a look, and see what suits your needs and the needs of of the person with autism. There’s a lot out there, and everyone develops differently, so see what’s available. If we’ve missed something you think is great, let us know in the comments.