Friday, February 3, 2012
A second-grade student who is apraxic and extremely unintelligible transferred into my school. He had received speech therapy since preschool and it seemed time to explore using an alternative communication device to help him express himself. I introduced the TouchChat app while working with him in the resource room. He immediately loved working with it and within a few sessions he was writing simple sentences although it was very labor-intensive for him. One day when I came to see him, he had just finished his spelling test and his substitute teacher for the day told me that while he could spell all the words correctly as a list he had memorized, he could not spell them on dictation and did not really know what they meant. I used the keyboard feature on TouchChat and had the student type in one of his spelling words and then have the i-Pad speak the word for him. His eyes lit up and he quickly typed in another of his spelling words. I wish that I could tell you that this was the break-through moment like Helen Keller at the water pump, but unfortunately he transferred from my school after that session so I'm not certain of the impact. I do think that this app had a lot of potential for him.