Below is a list of the best iPhone apps, iPad apps, books and audiobooks for (a) children and teens with ASD, (b) parents of children with ASD, and (c) teachers who have ASD students.
See on www.myaspergerschild.com
I have just finished using Cloud On for the first time. I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it when I first saw tweets about it a while ago but it was not available in Australia. I emailed the company and they were kind enough to let me know when it was available here. I like the way that it works with my existing cloud options, DropBox, Box.net and my Google Drive. Files opened easily and were very straightforward to edit. They saved automatically and created another version of my Google Doc for me.
This is an invaluable tool for me as my teaching machine is a PC and I use the iPad at home. It gets rid of those annoying file conversion issues.
Words with friends has become very popular in my classes, particularly among the boys, who are trying, and often succeeding to beat me. It is a Scrabble like game where you challenge others and play on your devices over the Internet. As there are numerous cheats around for it the competitive element wins out over the learning element, however, it IS a word game and students are enjoying it, so I’ll take my wins where I can. It is a worthwhile way of doing some vocab practice and I don’t want to make it too didactic.
The iAnnotate app has to be the best thing I have used on the iPad. The recent update mens that there are even more ways to annotate your documents.you have always been able to highlight, post notes and underline, but now you can draw with a variety of line thicknesses and the whole document can then be saved as is and emailed or added to your Dropbox.I am currently annotating the new Australian Curriculum document with a view to checking the digital technology requirements. It is definitely a ‘must have’ app.
One Note is an amazing piece of software. In fact it might just well be the best thing that Microsoft has. It allows users to save clippings, documents, insert files, images, sound and URLs straight into a program that is incredibly user friendly.
One small problem so far has been the lack of support for the iPad. Well now there’s an app! http://www.appscout.com/2011/01/microsoft_releases_onenote_for.php
….not if you live in Australia. Only US residents can get it at this point. Clearly the rest of the world does not work as well as Americans.
Well, the answer is really both. I have spent a lot of time lately playing games on this fantastic device (purely in the interests of education you understand!) but it is also a brilliant tool for teachers, especially if your school is kind enough to let you use the wifi (please guys).
I am using the QuickOffice app to create, edit and download documents in Word, Excel and PDF format, there is GradePad software which allows me to assess students on the go – I will be trialling this for real tomorrow as my students do their oral presentations, and you can obviously get emails and search the web. There is even a WordPress app to allow you to update your blog on the go if you have a WordPress blog.
As you can see there is enough there to justify buying one for any teacher interested in technology, but wait, there’s more. I also have a good dictionary on mine and if you were a language teacher the resources are amazing. I have study guides from Schmoop, Cliff notes and LitCharts for texts that I teach. They have great features such as character and theme profiles, summaries of chapters/scenes as well as the ability within the i-pod to copy and paste text into another document so that I can create worksheets etc. They all have author background study and some have the ability to zoom into character maps as well.
I also have mad libs, which every English teacher knows are a great way to cover the basics of parts of speech in a hilarious way. As well as a great grammar quiz and many, many others.
Of course, as the ipod also connects to YouTube, you can view short films on the go too. My next purchase needs to be a small data projector for the ipod!
I am really interested in hearing more about this from other people, so if others have great apps that they have discovered I’d love to hear about them.