It’s an exciting time for technology and children on the autism spectrum! For this reason, researchers are studying how interactive apps and games can help people on the autism spectrum.
Our goal is to help create a world where everyone has the tools to reach their full potential! In honor of World Autism Awareness Day, we did a study to learn how well the Lingokids app supports children on the autism spectrum.
Above all, families with children on the autism spectrum reported these challenges:
- 30% say that the greatest challenge is the daily routine of little ones
- 25% of families have children who find it difficult to make friends
- 23% point out their fear that children have to face extra challenges
In addition, we interviewed Dr. Lynne Baldwin and Dr. Diana Barrett about their “Review and Analysis of Lingokids Content for Children with Autism.”
What are the Best Apps for Kids on the Autism Spectrum?
Nowadays, there are so many great digital resources to support children’s learning. These online tools help kids academically, socially, and emotionally. Likewise, they can be used alongside your child’s behavior plan.
The best apps for children on the autism spectrum should include aspects of the Theory of Mind concept. The Theory of Mind is social thinking, or, how people have different desires, emotions, beliefs, and relationships. For instance, this means the app’s games and activities should actively support a child’s:
- Social Communication- Verbal and nonverbal language, listening with the whole body (gestures, body language, facial expressions)
- Executive Functioning- Paying attention even with distractions, controlling impulses, persisting at tasks, adapting to changing situations, transitioning focus, managing emotions
- Social Interaction- Sharing interests often through joint attention, adjusting behaviors in different environments, engaging in imaginative play, conversational turn-taking
Above all, the learning app should be designed to support all three of these areas to successfully benefit children on the autism spectrum.
Best Learning Activities for Children on the Autism Spectrum
Want to know more about specific activities for children on the autism spectrum? Look no further. The report listed “Green Light” activities that were found to be supportive.
Most importantly, these activities support learning development in areas of interaction, communication, repetition, and appropriate level of sensory stimulation.
📺 Educational Videos & Episodes
- LingoChef: Fancy Mashed Potatoes – This video shows a social interaction between a parent and his son. It demonstrates turn-taking, non-verbal communication (belly rubbing), facial expressions (nodding in agreement), and verbal expressions (yum!).
- Curiosity Time with Libby: Sneezing – Learn about health, hygiene, and self-care. Also, practice social situations like covering your face with a tissue when you sneeze!
- Feelings and Emotions – Learn to recognize different emotions and how to calm yourself down. In addition, preview different situations that bring out certain feelings.
- Cowy’s T-Rex – Learn social skills like collaboration, citizenship, and self-care.
🎧 Podcasts for Children with Autism
In the study we conducted, we found that 60% of parents choose stories to help foster their children’s development.
- Storytime: Love is in the Air – This podcast explains the concept of love. It includes verbal and nonverbal communication through descriptions and the sound of a kiss. It also supports cognitive flexibility by showing that the characters can love different things, and so can people! Children learn that two emotions and experiences can work together.
- Storytime: Watch Your Words – This podcast tells the story of a young boy and his first day of kindergarten. In the story, the boy learns about how much words matter and can affect other people. This podcast can be used to preview a new experience like starting school or understand concepts of other people’s feelings.
How Can Families use the Lingokids App to Help Aid in the Development of Children on the Autism Spectrum?
Let’s have fun Playlearning™ together! The Lingokids App provides great opportunities for parents to reinforce the skills that children learn through other services. For example, if a child is working on speech patterns, parents can search for similar activities on Lingokids to support.
The app also helps children learn and practice social skills that can be revisited at any time. The Lingokids App provides opportunities to preview and teach routines through social stories. For instance, they can learn about joining a game, sharing, bathroom and bedtime routines.
Caregivers, Tell Us What You Think!
Which games or apps have you found to be the most supportive for children on the autism spectrum? Let us know by tagging us on social media!
This report was commissioned by Monkimun Inc., as part of a study on the effectiveness of Lingokids content in the learning and development of children with autism. The funder was involved in the refining of the study question. The funder was not involved in the conduct, analysis, or interpretation of the study.