Assistive technology helps to provide people with disabilities enhanced learning, working, and daily living skills. The Apple store is loaded with an amazing selection of apps but what about other platforms? Android devices are rarely mentioned yet there are several apps out there that can be very helpful! Apps for an Android tablet can be hard to find for children beyond the preschool/Kindergarten level so this post focuses on apps that are used for children at the elementary school level (K to 5). The following apps can be helpful for children with disabilities who own an Android device.
I Can Communicate! AAC
I Can Communicate! is a FREE app for individuals who have augmentative and alternative communication needs. Users have the option of typing their messages as well as utilize buttons for pre-programmed messages. English and Spanish text-to-speech output is currently available.
Rating: 4.7 Stars from 15 Reviews
Commboards is an AAC Speech Assistance app that enables children and people of all ages with limited verbal abilities to express themselves and more easily communicate with the world around them, by utilizing a proved system of communication boards.
CommBoards - AAC Speech Assistant
A free AAC talker app which supports communication in all areas of life and therefore providing a voice to everyone. LetMeTalk is donation financed.
Price: Free (Requests a donation)
Rating: 4.5 Stars from 31 Reviews
The “I’m On It!” timer app for Android is designed specifically for people who struggle to stay focused on the task at hand. These may be children or adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD, or ADD) as well as people working through the unique challenges of High Functioning Autism Spectrum Disorder, or ASD (Asperger’s Syndrome), and, of course, anyone who struggles to stay focused.
Price: Free and has in-app purchases
Cause and Effect Sensory Light Box was created for a group of teenagers with complex needs including visual impairment, autism, and varied developmental disabilities. Light Box has since proven a popular choice for parents of much younger children without special needs who are exploring tablets and phones for the first time.
Rating: 4.4 Stars from 49,083 Reviews
Happy Kids Timer is simple to use back to school app for children which helps them complete their morning or evening routine easily and on time. This is a chores app for kids and a visual timer that can serve also as a tooth brushing timer. This app is totally operated by your child, who carries the mobile device with him/her to each area/room where the task needs to be carried out/completed. It utilizes a smart incentive program with an award and printable certificate.
Price: FREE version with in-app purchases
Children and young adults with additional needs often need visual instructions and guidance with social skills. Special Stories allows you to lessen the stress by using familiar images and your own words and voice to ensure they are prepared for social situations.
Rating: 5.0 Stars from 7 Reviews
Rating: 4.5 Stars from 23,571 Reviews
Price: FREE version with in-app purchases
– Math (algebra – addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, geometry, logic) – Spelling and reading (in English and other languages) – School subjects: Knowledge in typical school-related fields, such as science, geography, music, art, physics, history) – Learning languages (German, Spain and more coming soon, like French, Chinese, etc.) – Play through 30 levels of an exciting magic world by solving quests and learn at the same time.
Price: FREE with in-app purchases
Spend an afternoon brushing up on statistics. Discover how the Krebs cycle works. Learn about the fundamentals of music notation. Or, if you’re feeling particularly adventurous, learn how fire stick farming changed the landscape of Australia. It doesn’t matter if you are a student, teacher, homeschooler, principal, adult returning to the classroom after 20 years, or a friendly alien just trying to get a leg up in earthly biology—Khan Academy’s materials and resources are available to you completely free of charge.
Rating: 4.5 Stars from 97,541 Reviews
The Pro version has the “expression” mode in which you can write expressions in a natural way and watch your calculations. The result is displayed as a number, simplified expression, etc.
Rating: 4.6 Stars from 108,890 Reviews
For all ages: games for kids, for parents and for everybody! Increase your brain power and compete against players from around the world! Experience the heated battle that will keep you on your toes!
Brain games is based on principles of cognitive psychology to help you practice different mental skill: memory, attention, speed, reaction, concentration, logic and more.
Rating: 4.7 Stars from 41,979 Reviews
Price: FREE with in-app purchases
Rating: 4.7 Stars from 176 Reviews
Price: There is a free trial for 14 days then by a monthly subscription of $15/month.
Rating: 4.5 Stars from 760 Reviews
KettleMind is a brain training program developed to give your mind routine exercise and training to improve your cognitive skills and confidence.
Rating: 4.9 Stars from 205 Reviews
Rating: 4.7 Stars from 45,540 Reviews
Rating: 4.5 Stars from 48 Reviews
Rating: 4.8 Stars from 26,896 Reviews
Day planning is what you need. To do this, use the daily scheduler Sectograph as your personal manager. ✔ Your Timesheet. You can easily visualize time, and your timesheet will become very visual. Line up your schedule of cases in a visual form. ✔ Tracking time. Easily track working hours to take rest breaks on time (the principle of the “Pomodoro” timer). ✔ My goals. To note: timing in the application can be used to achieve goals. The time timer will always help to allocate time, to organize the day and to fulfill the task on time.
Rating: 4.3 Stars from 12,225 Reviews
Blind or visually impaired users can request help from a sighted volunteer, who will be notified on their phone. As soon as the first sighted user accepts the request for help, a live audio-video connection will be set up between the two parts. The sighted helper can now assist the blind or visually impaired, through the video connection from the blind or visually impaired user’s rear-facing camera.
As a sighted user, you are part of the big Be My Eyes volunteer-network, so don’t worry about leaving a blind person hanging, if you are not able to answer a request. We will simply forward the request and find the next available volunteer. The blind or visually impaired person can need help with anything from knowing the expiry date on the milk, to make sure that their clothes match.
Rating: 4.9 Stars from 10,984 Reviews
The GPS resource is used even if the App is in the background. This allows the user to keep using the app without active usage of the screen, so that they can still enjoy the features of Lazarillo even when their phone is in their pocket or when using other relevant apps.
Rating: 4.6 Stars from 572 Reviews
Audio Game Hub is a set of experimental arcade audio games that use audio as their primary interface – making them accessible for both sighted and non-sighted users. Audio Game Hub provides a medium to develop and improve motoric, auditory and memory skills by training them in a fun and stimulating way
Rating: 4.7 Stars from 1,207 Reviews
I hope this post has helped answer some questions on the apps available for Android for elementary age children with disabilities. As always, you are welcome to join us for more discussion on assistive technology in our FB group, IEP/504 Assistance, for parents of public school students from all over the United States. You can also join us in the Homeschooling Special (Needs) Kids group if you are considering homeschooling, or are currently homeschooling, children with special needs. We also have a group for all parents and caregivers of special needs children called Special Needs Parenting Advice and Support where we discuss ALL things related to special needs care and Educating Gifted Children is where we discuss topics concerning gifted children and those that are twice exceptional (2e).
CEO and Advocate
Michelle Reed-Harris is the mother of six children including surviving quadruplets. Her frustration with doctors and educators led her on a quest to learn about all the facets that touch the quads lives as children with disabilities. In the process, she gained a lot of useful information she could share with others so she started a Facebook group focusing on special education advocacy. The group quickly grew to over 6,000+ members. Recognizing the overwhelming need for assistance, she founded a nonprofit, AESA, allowing her to provide support, advice, and advocacy to parents with children who are outside the (Bell) curve.
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