Last week I reported on an iPad app called AutoVerbal, a soundboard that helps people who are non-verbal (kids with autism, stroke victims, etc.) to communicate. Since that post, I’ve heard about a therapy center using iPads with patients and I’ve learned about several more apps in the App Store available for special needs individuals. Then this morning, I read a touching story from a mom on BlogHer covering how her son “Leo’s life was transformed when a five-dollar raffle ticket turned into a brand-new iPad.”
During her story, Shannon (Leo’s mom) discusses his introduction to the iPad, the ways he uses it and how the iPad has changed his life. Leo uses his iPad to follow a visual schedule, work on spelling, draw pictures, maintain a list of social questions and play games. Shannon includes several videos in her blog post showing Leo using different applications on his iPad, as well as a picture drawn by him. She lists a number of apps available for kids (and adults) with communication difficulties, covers some of Leo’s favorite game apps and provides links to more information about kids with autism, iPads and augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) devices. Leo’s iPad has become an important tool in his daily life and Shannon has seen a definite improvement in her son’s ability and willingness to communicate.
Shannon’s story about Leo made me smile. With all the negative stories reported on daily, I found it extremely refreshing to read about something like an iPad having such a positive impact on a young boy’s life. I wish you all the best Shannon and Leo!