Sep 05, 2010 – The iPod has already been known for its gaming capabilities, and innumerous apps to everything you can imagine. However, it was not until a speech therapy company released its first application that the iPod started becoming utilized in treating children with speech problems. Speech disorders are one of the most frustrating difficulties children may present early in life as it impedes their ability to communicate with others, sometimes even with their parents.
Smarty Ears –a company that has already developed 13 applications for speech therapy– released in January of 2010 the first app for treating children with articulation problems called Mobile Articulation Probes (MAP). According to the developers, sales of this application have been enormous given the high percentage of speech sound disorders in children. The basic concept of the application is the use of a pool of over 2 thousand images divided by phonemes (sounds). This application was designed to be used by speech therapists as well as parents of children with speech sound errors who wish to practice with their children at home.
Parents are always encouraged to practice with their children at home to supplement the services of the speech therapist. Mobile Articulation Probes provides a very easy way for parents to practice with their children at a very affordable price ($29.99). The results can be e-mailed to their child’s speech therapist to follow up with the treatment. On the other hand, if this application is being used by speech therapists the words that the child is not producing appropriately can be e-mailed to the parents for daily practice at home.
If using the iPod/iPhone/iPad for treating speech errors was not already an astonishing enough progress, a new app was released to screen for speech errors and it is called the Sunny Articulation Test. The Sunny Articulation Test is a revolution in the way speech tests are presented to children. In the past, children’s articulation skills were assessed by the use of a pictured book. The Sunny Articulation Test makes the screening of these skills a lot more fun and interesting to the children while making it a lot more practical for the speech therapist. The Sunny Articulation Test automatically calculates percentages of accuracy and provides instantly at the end of the test. The speech therapy of the parent can print the results minutes after its administration.
These applications are starting a revolution in the filed of speech therapy. Smarty Ears has other applications available such as /r/ intensive SLP for treating children with difficulties pronouncing the /r/ sound, and Spanish Articulation Probes for Spanish speakers.
The Sunny Articulation Test and Mobile Articulation Probes can be found on the app store by the key word Smarty Ears. All Smarty Ears apps are compatible with the iPhone, iPod and the iPad. For more information and video tutorials on how to use the apps visit http://www.smarty-ears.com