iPads Help Nonverbal Children Communicate

Here is part of a touching article about the communication benefits of iPads for kids with disabilities.

Technology helps those with disabilities interact more fully with those around them
A Happy Meal has never tasted better.

For the first time, 13-year-old Victoria Wise was able to order a cheeseburger, French fries and a Sprite on her own – all thanks to an iPad.

Nonverbal since birth, Victoria had only been able to communicate with hand gestures and facial expressions.

But using the device, she placed her order – complete with a “please” and “thank you” – with just a few taps of her finger earlier this summer.

Victoria participated in pilot study through The Speech Garden Institute – a Charlotte-based nonprofit that serves children and college students who have speech and language delays – that tested the ability of iPads to help children with communication disabilities express everyday wants and needs.

Since then, Victoria’s mother, Karen Parker, said she has seen her daughter blossom.

“She was more confident. She was expressing herself where before she would sit back.”

The inspiration for the iPad Communication Project came from a short video clip. The Speech Garden’s executive director, Ellen Holloway, saw a video of child using an iPad to communicate and thought the device could help her students at the institute.

“Once I saw there was an app, I knew this would be great for so many things,” Holloway said.

To read the complete article visit: http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2011/08/14/2520060/ipads-help-nonverbal-children.html

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