Autism Help for Children May Come From App

AutismA new app called Skill Champ is now available for download on iPad. The help that may come from this new app, which is geared towards children with autism, has the potential for big results. In fact, the family of one Skill Champ user calls the app life-changing.

Emily Mack, who is 11 years old, has been using the Skill Champ app for a few days and the results have been impacting her entire family.  Emily’s mother, father and teenage sister all help Emily in her daily learning. When Emily had difficulties comprehending something, she became quite upset. Her older sister, Mary Ellen, has seen the difference that the Skill Champ app has made. Mary Ellen said that Emily is getting things right with this app, is not as frustrated and is much calmer.

Because Emily is experiencing success with the app, her confidence is growing. Each time she answers a question right it makes an impact. Along with building her confidence, this app is keeping Emily’s interest. One reason for that is because it can be customized for any age.

Lally Daley, one of the creators of the Skill Champ app, explained that the app is truly for autistic children of all ages. She clarified that if you have a young child, such as a two year old, who is using the app to work on number matching, there will be themes that will be interesting to a child of that age. She also added that if you have a child who is 16 and also working on number matching, there will be themes that will be interesting to a child of that age as well.

Another creator of the Skill Champ app, Katie Hench, added that the designers of the app know that children with autism respond very well to routines and visual learning. By using that information, the creators were able to design an app that has the potential to help children with autism, and with the help that may come from the app, it has the potential to impact the families of those who use the app also.

The new app also comes with some extra features. For example, parents have the option of tracking their child’s progress. This feature lets them see what is challenging for their child and what is working for their child. This option also allows the parent to print a curriculum for the child to practice new skills offline.

The makers of the app relied upon specific research in the autistic field in order to best design their app. They also state that they plan to continue researching, and that as new changes in evidence-based practices occur, they will incorporate those into new features they plan on releasing.

Currently there are ten skills on the Skill Champ app, which include things like letter matching, number finding and emotions based on expressions. There are also ten themes available on the app that can be customized for each lesson in order to appeal to the child’s interest.

While the app does let the parent track their child’s progress, it does not rely on a parent to use the results to update the difficulty as the child improves in the skill. The app will automatically adjust to make the challenge more difficult according to how the user is doing.  Skill Champ, currently available for free download on iTunes, comes with different app themes and features, and it may come with help for children with autism.

By Ashley Campbell


Skill Champ

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