Apps and programs for students with special needs
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TimestampName of program One line descriptionWeb addressCategoryRating 1-excellent 5-poorApplication areasComments about program Specific program notesYour name and email addressCostReview and descriptionAge group
2/4/2010 5:47:32TextfreeFree text messagingwww.pinger.comiPod App2Reading, Writing, Communication, Social, RecreationYou can use this program on your iPod to send and receive text messages. Because it's free, there are ads. (There is also a version you can buy, it's cheap and doesn't have ads).
There is a daily limit of 15 messages for Textfree Lite (the free version). No limit on messages for the paid version, and there are other features too, like more tones and themes.
Sign up for a Textfree address through the app. (Your friends will send a text to the email address given to you by the Textfree app.)
If your friend’s phone can’t send texts to an email, have them try using the MMS or picture messaging app. Your friends pay their regular rate. You don't pay anything.
Bridgette Nicholson
2/4/2010 6:03:24Google AppsDaily organization tools and email which can easily be synchronised through web and handheld devices - mail, calendar, contacts, 2.0, iPod App, iPhone App, Other handheld devices1Reading, Writing, Communication, Social, Organization / productivity, Daily lifeGoogle offers very powerful applications for everyone. For students who need to take responsibility for their daily schedule, to do list, reminders, documents, files and organization, using Google programs on the computer and on handheld devices can help. Once your account is set up, you can add information and view it on your iPod / iPhone or other handheld device, as well as on any computer with an internet connection. That means you can get to your information from almost anywhere you can get to a computer. Instructions for setting up Google calendar, email and contacts on iPod touch or iPhone:
1. Set up a Google account
2. To set up synchronization for your Google calendar go to

Important hint: you must set up your Google calendar, mail and contacts on the computer on Google's web site before setting up your iPod. You can use the iPod's built in access mail, calendar and contacts on applications once you have your Google accounts and MS Exchange set up..

Google Documents
Google Docs is an online place where you can create, store and use your documents (word processing, spreadsheets, slide shows). You can also store lots and lots of files too (even if you didn't create them in Google Docs). The file storage option allows you too keep files online so you can get to them anywhere. Great for organization.

You can get to your Google Docs on your Web browser on most handheld devices (make a bookmark to your documents to get to them easily on your handheld.)

Google Docs can help you get organized, remember where your work and assignments are, and get your work turned in on time!
Bridgette Nicholson
2/4/2010 6:15:10Speak it! Text to speech with!/Speak_it!.htmliPod App, iPhone App2Reading, Writing, Communication, SocialA very basic program. Type on the keyboard to create words and sentences. Press the 'Speak' button to speak the text out loud. 4 different voices included. You can change the volume and speed of the voice. Phrases can be stored. This is a big program - takes a while to download.Bridgette Nicholson bnicholson@customsolutions.usLow cost
2/4/2010 6:32:31Proloquo2GoAugmentative Communication App.www.proloquo2go.comiPod App, iPhone App1Communication, SocialThis is a very good dynamic screen display program which provides many different options for communication. You can use this program with or without pictures or symbols. The words or icons can be laid out in rows or a grid. Font and icon sizes can be changed. There are many different settings for speech and voices. Here are some important hints:
Settings can be changed in TWO places:
1. From within the program, you can change speech settings and vocabulary, back up your grids, and more. Click on the little AB button at the bottom of the screen while you are in P2G
2. Outside of the program. Shut down P2G. Go to the main home screen, settings, scroll down to P2G. There you can change many options.

Manual online

Remember, the program can be customized and changed in many different ways. When you start it up for the first time, you will see many pictures and icons. The layout, number of icons, words and pictures can all be changed to suit your needs!
Bridgette Nicholson
2/4/2010 6:43:24StanzaElectronic book readerwww.lexcycle.comiPod App, iPhone App1Reading, Recreation, Other academicGreat program for reading ebooks. This does not read out loud. However you can customize the text size, color, line spacing etc. There are hundreds of free books you can download immediately once you have installed the app. You can also create your own ebooks to read on the program.
Information on how to create your own books, change settings, download books and more: Bridgette Nicholson bnicholson@customsolutions.usFree
2/4/2010 6:47:14ShapeWriterA unique, quick keyboard input method using dragging instead of tapping.www.shapewriter.comiPod App, iPhone App, Many other handheld devices1WritingThis is a very unique method of text entry. See the web site for an animated demo of how this works. You drag your finger across the keys to create words. You really need to see the demo to understand it. This may be useful for some people in helping to enter text more efficiently and accurately. Bridgette Nicholson bnicholson@customsolutions.usLow cost
2/4/2010 6:52:04Pee Wee Herman Soundboard16 unique Pee Wee Herman Sounds App, iPhone App3Social, RecreationFun sounds from Pee Wee Herman. Might be fun for a while especially for students who are non verbal - creating sound effects for others to enjoy :-)Low cost
2/4/2010 6:58:05MelodicaMusic application that mixes lights and sounds in a unique way App, iPhone App2Social, RecreationFun little program - tap all over the screen to create lights and sequences of sounds. Try it, you'll figure it out without any help.Bridgette Nicholson bnicholson@customsolutions.usFree, Low cost
2/4/2010 7:01:45TonePad Make music and melodies by touching the screenwww.tonepadapp.comiPod App, iPhone App2Communication, SocialA similar program to Melodica. Touch the screen to make music patterns and melodies. You can save your songs and change color settings.Bridgette Nicholson bnicholson@customsolutions.usFree, Low cost
2/4/2010 7:08:13PandoraFree internet radio WITH music analysis, to find the music you like best!www.pandora.comWeb 2.0, iPod App, iPhone App1Social, RecreationMany users give their recommendations to Pandora. This is the Music Genome Project. You can enter a song you like, and the service will give you suggestions of music that is similar. You can let Pandora know if you like the song they gave you or not (with the thumbs up or thumbs down sign), and Pandora will start giving you more of the songs you like :-)

You can use the free version as long as you want. You can also purchase their upgraded service with no ads and unlimited skipping. See the web site for details as prices and features change all the time. Bridgette Nicholson bnicholson@customsolutions.usFree, Low cost
2/6/2010 10:23:49eReaderBook Reader App, Palm, Mac, Windows, Windows Mobile versions available1Reading, Recreation, Organization / productivityEbook reader for a variety of devices/computer types. The iTouch version improves upon an already great program by increasing the changes you can make to the text. Basic features include enlarging text, bookmarking, highlighting, adding notes, etc. If there is a dictionary installed on the device, you can look up words directly from within the program.Free
2/6/2010 10:25:26Kindle ReaderKindle Reader App for iTouch/ App, iPhone App2Reading, Recreation, Organization / productivity, Other academicUse the Kindle App to read Kindle books on your iTouch or iPhone. Supports all features of the Kindle, so should "read aloud" any books with that feature installed.Free
2/6/2010 10:35:10Time TimerVisual Timer program3Communication, Recreation, Organization / productivity, Daily life, Other academicJust like the Time Timer you may have in your classroom, but for the iPhone/iTouch. The program is very nice for the visual features, but seems expensive at $4.99. Additional sound choices for the "end time" would be nice as well; most of the current ones seem high pitched. Also, if you exit the app while the timer is running, "end time" won't sound; you'll receive a message when you use the app again saying that timer ended while in another app.4.99
2/6/2010 16:28:19WordQ/SpeakQText to speech/Speech to text program4Reading, Writing, CommunicationSo far every student I have shown it to loves it. It is a talking word processor with word prediction. It also is a speech to text program all for one price. Make sure you get a good microphone. The company has Sharon Meldgin$299
2/8/2010 6:40:52Where Is My iPhone?Sound effectsiPhone App3Recreation"Where is my Phone" listens for your whistle and then plays the sound effect of your choice (or your own recorded soundbite) when it hears it. The makers claim it can recognize you whistling from up to 30 meters away, and I had no trouble in activating sirens, explosions and the rest just by whistling on the other side of the room.Low cost
2/8/2010 6:41:57Logitech Touch Mouse: Air Mouse Procontrol your computer's mouse, enter text via the iPhone keyboard, iPod App, iPhone App1AccessControl your computer's mouse, enter text via the iPhone keyboard, run apps, control media—it basically turns your iPhone into a wireless control center for your laptop or desktop. Great for people with physical disabilities and who are able to use the screen on the iPhone.bnicholson@customsolutions.usLow cost
2/8/2010 6:44:30This American Life:RadioiPod App, iPhone App2Social, Recreation, Daily lifeLow cost
2/8/2010 6:46:57ChompSearch for appsiPod App, iPhone App2Organization / productivityChomp is an app for finding more apps. A simple program with bookmarking feature. Low cost
2/8/2010 6:48:21Grand Theft AutoGameiPod App, iPhone App1RecreationVisually impressive, great graphics. Low cost
2/8/2010 9:00:43iWriteWordsA simple tracing game for letters & numbersiPod App, iPhone App1Reading, Writing, RecreationThis is simple writing program that lets kids practice writing letters, numbers & words. It's very interactive and gives a nice reward for completing a sequence.Patrick Black, pblack00@gmail.comLow costReviewed
2/9/2010 8:18:04Educate 2.0Teacher tooliPod App, iPhone AppTeacher tool(teacher's companion providing mobile access to your timetable, student data, teaching strategies and eLearning tools. ) Low costTo be reviewed and description to be written
2/9/2010 8:19:13Early ReaderEarly reading skills App, iPhone AppReading(allows parents to teach their children all the essential skills for early reading. Version 1.1 now also includes 160 audio tracks!) Looks promisingLow costTo be reviewed and description to be written
2/9/2010 8:19:59Early MathTrain early math skills App, iPhone AppMath(introduce your child to key mathematical concepts including Number, Shape, Measurement, Addition, Subtraction and Time. )Low costTo be reviewed and description to be written
2/17/2010 21:02:18Storykit Multimedia story creationiPod App, iPhone App1Writing, Communication, SocialA fun story creation application. It allows students to create stories with text, audio and drawings right on the device. They'll need a mic to record audio, but when completed they can share the story online directly. We've had more success use the Brushes application as the image creator which easily imports into StorykitReviewedEarly childhood, Elementary, Middle school, High school, Adult, Age appropriate / low cognitive
2/17/2010 21:03:45Dictionary!Dictionary programiPod App, iPhone App2Reading, Writing, Other academicPlease note the exclamation point in the title because there are a number of dictionary applications. This app is handy because it downloads locally on the iPod Touch and it's free.

FreeReviewedElementary, Middle school, High school, Adult
2/17/2010 21:04:33Airmouse Remote control of the computeriPod App, iPhone App1Accessremote control app for a computer on the same wifi network. It has 4 screens for various functions, one for the web, itunes, custom and a keyboard. FreeReviewedElementary, Middle school, High school, Adult, Age appropriate / low cognitive
2/17/2010 21:09:22Voice Memos and Posterous Record voice and upload immediately for others to hear.iPod App, iPhone App1Writing, Communication, Social, RecreationThe Voice Memos app is a pretty straight-forward app for voice recording. Besides a trimming option, it has a handy feature of being able to email recordings as an attachment. That’s great because the blogging service Posterous lets you post podcasts by email! Simple email the recording from Voice Memos to your Posterous email. It’s automatically posted to the blog and has a news feed so it can be subscribed to in iTunes. schools probably want to screen audio recordings before they are posted. Instead of emailing Posterous, students email to their teacher who could then post it after approving the content. It’s exciting that something recorded during a field trip can be instantly published online.FreeReviewedEarly childhood, Elementary, Middle school, High school, Adult
2/17/2010 21:51:36Comic Touch Create comics with speech bubblesiPod App, iPhone App2Writing, Communication, Social, RecreationComic Touch and Comic Touch Lite are two of a few iPod touch apps where you can create comics. You can import any saved image into Comic Touch and layer text bubbles on top of it. There are also some limited special effects you can apply to the image. Where can you get images?

You can save images from the web. Mobile Safari makes it easy. Simply tap and hold an image and the Save Image option will appear. The image will be saved into your Saved Photo album, which is accessible in Comic Touch.
Free, Low costReviewedElementary, Middle school, High school
2/18/2010 19:10:06Sign Smith ASL UltimateASL Dictionarywww.Vcom3D.comiPod App, iPhone App1Communication, Sign LanguageGreat program to view ASL signs on the go. Signs can be sorted alphabetically or by categories (over 25 different ones). You can choose to have the sign demonstrated 1, 2 or 3 times (looping)djackson1991Low costReviewedEarly childhood, Elementary, Middle school, High school, Adult, Age appropriate / low cognitive
2/18/2010 19:14:58DoodleBuddyDrawing/Art ProgramiPod App, iPhone App1Reading, Writing, Communication, RecreationFUN! Similar to "paint" programs on computers but also offers backgrounds, stamps (with sounds), option to import photos for doodling on, color choices, choice of brush sizes. A must have program especially as a reinforcer.djackson1991FreeReviewedEarly childhood, Elementary, Middle school, Age appropriate / low cognitive
2/18/2010 19:20:14A 1000 WordsTalking Photo Albumwww.technicallyspeaking-slp.comiPod App, iPhone App1Communication, Social, Daily lifeQuick way to make talking books, social stories, directions, etc. The program offers numerous options to edit, import photos, copy, and modfiy your "books." Another must have program especially for creating social stories on the fly!djackson1991Low costReviewedEarly childhood, Elementary, Middle school, High school, Adult, Age appropriate / low cognitive