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SLP Mommy of Apraxia: Speech Stickers App Review

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Speech Stickers App Review


Speech Stickers is the first app that I downloaded for Ashlynn (my daughter with apraxia) when she had first turned three.  I chose it because it was cheap, and said it was developed for children with apraxia.  The app is simple in design with not a lot of bells and whistles; however, my daughter did actually enjoy practicing her speech with this app.

The app is set up for kids in the very early stage of apraxia therapy.  The child can practice sounds in isolation and in CV(consonant-vowel) and VC(vowel-consonant) combos. The app is based around blocked practice with a lot of repetition that is necessary for apraxia therapy.
After you pick your sound or sound combo, you can then decide how many times times the child has to say it before they get a "sticker" or a little animation as a reward.  Then, the child chooses between five characters on the bottom, all of which have a different pitch to their voice.  This is a bonus too, because children with apraxia have difficulty with "prosody" or the rhythm of speech.  The characters' mouths model the correct placement.  The above picture is showing 'm.'  Below the characters are modeling 'mo.' This is also great because it gives the kids a visual cue for the correct mouth posture.
A scoring bar at the top help score and keep track of data. You must press the green check or the red x to move onto the next practice sound.  The app is designed so that the bar can also turn upside down so that the therapist can discreetly score; however, my daughter picked up on this in a heartbeat and would push the buttons haphazardly just so she could move on.  Once you reach the set number you earn a "sticker" or reward.  You can choose from eight stickers seen below:
They are so simple, but my daughter loved them.  I chose the bus just so you can get an idea of the animation.


What I Love: 
- Works on early developing syllable structures
- It really helped us work on final consonants when my daughter wasn't adding them.  Helped us get the final 'n' and final 't'
- Gives a reward in the form of a short animation that is interesting to kids
- Models different pitches and inflections, which is difficult for kids with apraxia

What it's Missing
- I would like the option for the child to record their voice
- As an SLP, I would appreciate the option to email the data
- It doesn't include more complex syllable structures such as CVC and CVCV, so it's only applicable for the early stages of therapy

Impressions:
This app was helpful during the early stages of therapy, when Ashlynn was struggling to sequence basic syllable structures.  She had just turned three, and was motivated to practice speech.  In addition, she loved the sticker rewards.  It did help us get those final consonants that she was struggling with too.
As an SLP, I have also used this app with a five year old, and he enjoyed it too.  For the price, I would recommend this app if you have a kiddo in the early stages of therapy.

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