iPad Changes Life of Boy with Autism

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!

About Cristi: Contact me via Twitter: @PadGadgetCristi

  • http://www.candysfamily.wordpress.com Candy

    I have been using the Grace App on an iPod Touch with my non verbal Autistic son. His new iPad will arrived today, very exciting! Check out the autism category on my blog if you’d like to read how we are doing with it :)

    • Cristi


      Thanks for the comment and for reading PadGadget! I’ll definitely check out your blog and good luck with your new iPad!


  • Cherri Cary

    My non-verbal son has autism and uses the iTouch as well for both entertainment and communication. Our new iPad is being “saved” for those really crucial situations where we absolutely MUST have the ability to entertain with music and video ~ an airplane ride, dental visit or an EEG. I am afraid he will become obsessed with it since he already knows all about how to find music, videos, YouTube, etc. He’s just too smart and too determined!

    Meanwhile our schools are actually purchasing iPads to use for Special Needs students…so much less expensive than the AAC devices they replace.

    This device rocks for our kids!!!!

  • http://www.sebastianhahn.de Sebastian

    That sounds great. I have three children (4 years, 2 years, 7 weeks) – apart from our youngest who cannot even grab stuff by choice they really love my iPad. The two eldr ones insist on opening iBooks for me to read stuff, sometimes they really put up some kind of a fight when I need the iPad to go to work.
    So, have a good time