Common Sense

TOP PICKS | 18 TOOLS

Best Apps for Kids with Autism

More app creators are turning their attention to the particular learning needs of kids on the autism spectrum. Educators often cite the need for accessible apps that provide visual cues to aid in communication, support transitions to reduce anxiety, and create a consistent structure in students' daily schedules. The apps and websites on our list can help kids learn to better identify and regulate emotions, communicate and express themselves, manage time and routines, and practice successful social exchanges.

Continue reading

Top Picks

RELATED

PrintPrint list

Emotional Regulation

Touch and Learn - Emotions

Free app helps kids identify emotions, recognize body language

Bottom line: Bridges the gap between feeling or witnessing emotions and using words to describe them.

The Mood Meter

Well-designed tool encourages kids to reflect on and manage emotions

Bottom line: Appealing, thought-provoking tool builds emotional intelligence.

Smiling Mind

Quick and easy meditation practice for busy classroom lives

Bottom line: This easy-to-follow meditation program can help reduce stress and support social and emotional learning.

Language and Communication

Skill Champ

Foundational-skills-practice tool supports specific learning needs

Bottom line: Well-designed tool for targeted foundational skills practice.

Autism Core Skills School Edition: Academic, Communication, and Social Skills Plus Data

Robust app combines high-quality lessons with handy quantitative data

Bottom line: Academic and social lessons are worth the purchase price for the amount of depth and data produced.

QuestionIt

Wh- questions taught in concrete ways for kids with language delays

Bottom line: A solid, if basic, approach to teaching question words and concepts to students with significant language issues.

Proloquo2Go - Symbol-based AAC

Brilliant tool helps kids with speech difficulties communicate

Bottom line: The price is hefty, but Proloquo2Go carries its weight by providing students and teachers an effective, one-of-a-kind communication tool.

Vizzle

Visual lessons reinforce concepts for students with special needs

Bottom line: Thoughtful but dated tool helps with differentiation and progress-tracking for students with autism.

Pictello

Fabulous tool can help kids create social stories

Bottom line: Pictello is a great way for kids to create social stories that can help them find their unique voice and prepare for internal and external struggles.

Routines and Schedules

FTVS HD - First Then Visual Schedule HD

Useful multisensory tool teaches self-direction and follow-through

Bottom line: This simple but powerful tool engages kids in independently following a schedule.

My Video Schedule

Special-needs scheduler for daily tasks; customizable for kids' use

Bottom line: Activity scheduling helps give structure -- the visual cues help students connect routines with their outcomes.

Time Timer

Easily conceptualize, manage, and visualize time

Bottom line: Goes above and beyond standard timers to include handy customization and visual cues.

Choiceworks Calendar

Empowering calendar tool alleviates transition anxiety

Bottom line: Great structure, lots of visual choices, and ease of use make this tool a worthwhile investment.

Social Skills

Kid in Story Book Maker

Easy-to-make personalized stories can help boost social skills

Bottom line: A must-have story creation tool for teachers in special-needs settings.

Social Story Creator Educators

Create multimedia stories that help with social skills

Bottom line: Solid and very simple app for kids with social challenges.

Social Adventures

Expert-approved activities nurture students' social skills

Bottom line: A treasure chest of social-skills-building activities created by speech and language pros that are worth the high price and need for facilitation.

ConversationBuilder

Themed scripts help kids practice successful social exchanges

Bottom line: For speech-language pathologists, this is a must-have tool for helping kids learn conversation skills.

The Social Express II

Fabulous multimedia lessons boost social-awareness skills

Bottom line: Compelling webisodes help students learn to cope with real-life situations.

Get tips for using these tools in the classroom

See related resources