Welcome to our review of "best apps" for Speech Language Pathology and Occupational Therapy. We recommend a number of apps that target expressive and receptive language, narrative skills, articulation, phonological awareness, pre printing, fine motor, visual motor, etc. Our list recommends apps for young learners (preschool and kindergarten) and older elementary students. Most applications have android and IPAD versions. Although apps can be used individually with children who have speech pathology & occupational therapy goals, most can be used to benefit all students in a classroom.
Apps for Young Learners, including preschool and kindergarten
Expressive and receptive language skills:
- Children with language delays learn best when interacting with an adult who can guide their learning. This app allows educators to set up scenes before hand, and interact with the student while teaching language concepts.
- The app can be used to teach one or multiple step directions, which is be very challenging for children with receptive language delays.
Speech With Milo
- Speech with Milo - has a series of apps that target a range of language skills.
- Uses a character called Milo in each app to help teach concepts
- Speech with Milo - Therapy Ideas is a free app that is full of games and activities to use with apps
- Series is best used for preschool and KG students
Speech with Milo -Sequencing
- Each activity is broken into three smaller actions that make up a beginning, middle and an end.
- Students can move each image until they are in the correct sequence to make a story.
- Once the story is in the right sequence, the characters come to life in a short animation.
Speech with Milo- Verbs
- The character demonstrates 100 different verbs in an entertaining app.
- Prechool and KG children will learn verb endings to simple words such as "bounce", "play", "run".
Speech with Milo- Prepositions
- Ask a child, "Where is Milo?" as the character moves to different positions
Preposition Remix by Smarty Ears
- This app is another option to use for teaching prepositions. Focuses on 20 basic prepositions such as behind, under, over, inside, next to, on, etc. Customizable so that educators can work on a few prepositions at a time.
Speech with Milo - Adjectives.
Contains 55 adjectives including emotions and describing words List at the beginning allows you to choose the words you want to teach
Speech with Milo Interactive Storybook
This app acts as a wordless book, allowing children to record their own story or listen to the story. Great for parents to use at home.
- This app has over 70 colorful, voice-over illustrations (i.e. big-small, hot- cold, happy-sad, etc.).
- Colourful pictures help children learn opposites and semantic relations
What is it? Auditory Flashcards!
- Develop vocabulary and memory skills using clear terms and sound effects.
- Develop expressive vocabulary of young students in common themes: animals, fruits & vegetables, transportation, in the city, in the house, bugs, musical instruments, and food
Categorization and Associations
Go-Togethers improves language comprehension by developing categorization, association, and naming skills . App can be used to:
- Help children identify items that share a semantic association.
- Target categories of items, such as rooms in a house, weather and seasons, and buildings.
- Elicit and score students’ naming and description of semantic associations.
- Measure treatment effectiveness and skill growth over time through reported data.
Children with expressive and receptive language delays have difficulty answering simple wh questions such as "What is your name?" or "What is this?".
- The app has 400 different "who", "what", "where", "why" and "when" questions.
- Very easy for parents to use as well to practice at home.
- It is an interactive app, that allows you to touch the right answer and hear an audio recording
Storypatch is an app designed for children to create their own picture books. It has hundreds of images in its library as well as the ability to import photos. Students will love this app because they will be creating fun and engaging stories almost immediately.
- Story Patch provides lots of backgrounds, animals and characters. Set up the scenes and place the people where you want them to go.
- The "build a character" feature allows you to create facial expressions and body positions.
- After you have completed the story you can PDF and share.
Storyrobe is a digital app that lets you create stories using images and video from a camera or photo library. Follow these simple steps to create a story:
- Click on an image to select it, and continue adding one at a time
- When finished adding images or video, select the View Photo Lab
- Press the blue arrow and drag images in a desired sequence
- When you are ready to record your story press the record story tab.
- You can pause, record, and stop the recording anytime.
This is a great app to help young children learn letter names and sounds.
- Children can listen and then match the correct letter names or sounds
- Adjust the settings and the blocks display either upper case or lower case letters.
- Select the consonant letter blends for the initial sounds to make the task a bit more difficult.
Auditory Rhyming App
- Helps young children develop rhyming skills
- Provides 3 different rhyme presentations:
- ArticPix allows you to customize the flashcards to practice in a matching game.
- Your SLP will provide you with a list of sounds and contexts for each child
- Select the sound, and the word position on the app
- When the student taps the screen, the word is clearly pronounced
- The student can tap the microphone icon, to record himself/herself
- The app will provide the student with immediate feedback (i.e. “yay")
- Feedback can be turned off so that the educational assistant can provide feedback instead
- EA’s can collect data easily, for up to 4 students, and email data to the SLP
Articulation Scenes allows teachers to set up sounds with a variety of activities
- Teachers can set up one scene per sound for each position
- Listen to targeted words, and find them a scene
- Has a good practice scene for the final “r" position
- Tap the word and say it.
- Children can also listen to a story that uses the target words
- Match3Say is a fun matching game that allows children to select the phoneme to play a matching game.
- Match to Say has three levels of difficulty.
- Great tool for parents to use at home, and for teachers to use at speech centers
- Teacher can choose each sound, choose a position and select words or phrases
- The word or phrases can be recorded for playback
Smart Oral Motor
- A fun way to practice oral motor skills with young children.
- Use this app to guide children through a series of 15 animated oral motor exercises such as making an “o" with the mouth, moving tongue right to left, etc.
- Can be used with young children who have apraxia
Apps for Elementary Aged Students
- Mental Case is a flashcard app that can be used to teach new words.
- Great for ESL students too.
- Take a photograph with your iPad or iPhone and place it directly onto a card.
- It is also possible to embed or record audio, import images from iPhoto, and present flashcards to others as a slideshow. This app also has a website where you can access pre made files: FlashcardExchange.com
The Bluster App helps older elementary students develop vocabulary skills while learning to recognize word patterns.
- In order to answer a question, students need to select three words from a list that share a common relationship (i.e. find three rhyming words, words with common prefixes, etc.).
- Students can play the game alone or as a team.
Vocabulary and Reading
Word BINGO helps beginning readers recognize and locate more than 300 sight words.
- Using a Bingo game format, the child taps each word read aloud.
- When they score a "BINGO," they collect a cute animated bug.
- Other features include spelling practice, an interactive word block tower, and games.
- Best for children from 6 years and up, with receptive language and auditory processing disorders.
- Allows children to follow increasingly longer and more complex directions in 4 categories: Basic Directions, Quantitative, Temporal, and Conditional
- Develops auditory attention, memory, and auditory processing of verbal directions
- Select various levels of difficulty for each client
- Select multiple clients at one time and cycle through by choosing name of client on top of screen
- Data reports available for each student
- Practice consonant sounds by selecting specific sounds
- Once you have chosen the sound, choose the option of initial, medial, or final position
- Then you will get a list of words, and you can select the ones you want the student to work on.
- You can see the picture of each target word, and mark whether the child said it correctly
- The app has an option to hear a recorded production of each task
- Record the client’s attempt, percentage of accuracy, words attempted
- The app makes a report card, with recordings and notes, that can be shared by email or printed
- Great app for targeting multiple goals including articulation, receptive and expressive language
- App allows you to choose an articulation sound, with multiple choice, open ended, or silly questions
- Allows you to print or email questions to another person
- Great to share with parents for carry-over or practice
Speech Trainer 3D
- This app is good for all sounds including vowels and consonants
- Speech Trainer 3D is a tool that is designed to help individuals to practice every sound including vowels and consonants.
- Detailed 3D animations demonstrate correct placement of tongue, lips, and mouth for sounds
- Good app for older children and adults
- Wonderful App for elementary aged students
- Provides a list of conversations to choose from
- Facilitates turn taking
- Provides suggestions for carrier phrases
- Record conversation and email to parents
- Great for children with social pragmatic disorders
Speech Tree and Proloquo2go
- Both apps are designed for children with autism and severe developmental delays
- Many early communicators who are in learning stages find AAC systems to be challenging
- Contact your SLP for a consultation on how best to set up these apps
- The app encourages students to draw lines over colourful scenes.
- Each time squiggles are added, the scenes become more and more animated.
- A simple painting application that focuses on fine motor control
- Reinforces basic concepts such as staying within the lines
- The child has to select a colour and tap the portion of the picture they want to colour
Write My Name
- This app helps children between 4 and 6 years learn how to write their names
- Develops visual motor, visual perceptual and discrimination skills by tracking floating objects, locating and discriminating between objects
- Younger children can work on pre printing shapes
- Focuses on fine motor development & letter formations.
- Our OT particularly likes this one because it has a heavy emphasis on stroke sequence and start position.
- An award winning app that teaches young children to trace letters, and write with precision
- The games and animations in this app really hold a young child's attention
- Teaches skills gradually by having children trace letters first, then form letters on their own
Ready to Print
- This app was created by an Occupational Therapist
- Very comprehensive app that targets visual-motor, visual perceptual, and fine motor skills
- Gives students more opportunities to practice, and reinforces their work
- Features a progression from larger hand movements to smaller, more refined movements
- Great app for helping children learn correct letter formation
- Helps children overcome common letter reversals such as “b’s" and “d’s"
- First activity called “tilt it" helps children understand left to right formations
Apps for the Classroom
Confer App - Note taking app for teachers
- This app helps teachers take quick notes on student's skills.
- Teachers can select a small group of students and save one note to each of them with a single tap
- The template provides a window for "strength", "teaching point" and "next step"
- Upload an share data
- Visual Timer for the classroom
- Allows teachers to countdown for up to 60 minutes and slowly make the red portion disappear
- Has many options to set timer at minutes or seconds
- Plays fun sounds such as an explosion or dog barking when it gets to zero
Zorken Token Board
Zorten's Token Board helps teachers and SLP's reinforce a good behaviour or a new skills.
- Easy way to reinforce students who can follow a token system
- You can take a picture of the student, and upload it on the board as a background image
- App allows you to create, save, and edit multiple boards.
- Students can select the tokens they want as a reward
- Also use Token Board as a First Then Board