The development of social skills can be particularly challenging for many children with a disability, but like so many things these days, there’s a multitude of apps out there that can help you help your child. Here’s a roundup of a few of our favourites to help children interact with others, identify & manage emotions, develop relationships and more…
The Social Adventures app provides clinicians, teachers and parents with a treasure trove of activity descriptions for teaching social skills and friendship. Children ages 3-13 with social and social anxiety will gain confidence and success in navigating the rough waters of relationships. You can use the app to teach: initiating interactions, maintaining interactions, interpreting non- verbals, experiencing humour and more.
TOUCH AND LEARN EMOTIONS
Touch and Learn is a powerful gaming platform and this app is focused on helping kids read body language and understand emotions by looking at gorgeous pictures and figuring out which person is expressing a given emotion. The game is customisable so you can add emotions and actions you’d like to focus on.
Discover how to become a better social thinker with Social Skill Builder’s You Are A Social Detective Beginner app. This interactive App teaches children how to appropriately engage in everyday situations. It teaches them how to use their eyes, ears and brain to make smart social guesses and investigate clues to see how others’ emotions and responses are connected to their own behaviour.
MIDDLE SCHOOL CONFIDENTIAL
This book series for 8-14 year olds is also available as an app. A one of a kind fiction/non-fiction hybrid, Middle School Confidential is part full-colour graphic novel and part smart talk life skills. Each book focuses on a common stumbling block on the road to high school and beyond. And in each one, readers follow the adventures of a group of 7th graders who are just trying to navigate through the ever-changing drama taking place in their friendships, their families and, of course, at school. The app enables readers to zoom right into the story world. With beautiful full-colour illustrations and richly layered audio made up of movie-like sound effects and music, it will challenge teens to think about their emotions and behaviour in new ways and encourage them to make more respectful, cooperative choices at school and at home.
TURN TAKER – SOCIAL STORY AND SHARING TOOL
Turn taking is a key social skill for all children, and learning to appropriately take turns is imperative to create and maintain social relationships. Turn Taker uses visual and audio cues to facilitate turn taking and sharing for any child. The app also includes an illustrated social story about game play and sharing.
Explore feelings in an open-ended free style playroom! These huggable pets have personality to spare and are animated with realistic multi-faceted reactions to a whole host of scenarios. Pretend play with over 110 objects, foods, toys and musical instruments allows you to find out how to please your lovable pets while helping develop social and emotional awareness and put names to the many emotions and reactions.
This colourful, educational social skills app has all 56 illustrated picture flash cards (plus audio of each card text) from the How Would You Feel If … Fun Deck® by Super Duper® Publications. Select the cards you want your child to see, and have them discuss their feelings about a variety of situations. The prompts include questions like, “How would you feel if … you forgot to study for your spelling test?” and “How would you feel if … your favourite football team lost?”
KLOOG 2 RETURN TO ZUGOPOLIS FOR IPHONE
This is the second app in the Social Skills for Autism series and continues the journey of the alien character Kloog, through the social world that he finds difficult and challenging. This app contains lessons which teach life and safety skills suitable for all children, but which have been laid out in an autism friendly manner. It offers solutions to everyday difficulties experienced by all children. It looks at friendship and explores areas such as: What is a friend; Developing friendships; and how to recognise and respond to bullying.
EMOTIONS FROM I CAN DO APPS
Emotions from I Can Do Apps is an educational tool designed in collaboration with a Speech Language Pathologist that focuses on helping individuals identify different facial expressions using real faces and test their understanding of emotions. Emotions include – happy, sad, scared, surprised and angry.