The Southern California Augmentative and Alternative Communication Network... a support group for professional development, problem solving, leadership, mentoring, and training in the use of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) to develop communication in non-speaking and minimally verbal individuals in the Southern California Region.

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Sunday, September 23, 2012

Free Apps for Early Communicators

When just getting started with an early communicator, try a free app such as Sounding Board, GoTalk Now Free, or Picture Card Maker to teach cause-and-effect via the iPad touch screen. In these apps you can create boards with anywhere from 1-25 message areas/"buttons" using your own pics, by taking a photo with the iPad, or adding a saved image from the web (only SoundingBoard has a limited in-app image library).

With a single message area, the student could request "MORE" of a preferred item, food, or quick activity (such as bubbles, a spin in a chair, squeezes, etc.), and then move to two messages for with the addition of "ALL DONE" to refuse, protest, or escape non-preferred tasks. These same 1- to 2-message layouts could be used for highly motivating cloze activities ("E-I-E-I-O" if Old McDonanld is motivating, activating the on screen "button" to fill-in his name during a group song or rhyme, etc.) or Hi / Bye if greetings are motivating to your student. Here are some screenshots of these three, free apps:

(field of 1-12 message areas/"buttons")

GoTalkNow Free
(1, 4, 9,  16, or 25 message areas)

PicCard Maker 
(field of 4 or 16 message areas)
Single button for cloze Old McDonald activity. 
Image drawn and saved in the Doodle Buddy app & "Select from Library" in PicCardMaker

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