Using the Powers of Technology for Good rather than Evil…
Technology is a powerful force…as we talk about every Tuesday on our blog. There is a lot out there to be concerned about as a parent. And a lot we want you to know…BEFORE your children do. But, thankfully, there are also some techie folks out there in the computer ethos who use their powers for good. They are creating apps who actually help kids with things that matter, more than just climbing or watching whomever else is climbing the social ladder of the hour.
We’ve recently come across a few of these apps. These, in particular, help kids with social skills—something we feel is increasingly a need in the lives of kids. Many of them are targeted toward kids on the autism spectrum. But, we believe that all kids can benefit from lessons in important tools such as perspective-taking, reciprocity in relationship, and reading emotions. We actually all know a few adults who can, too.
The Social Express Home is an animated app helping kids with social awareness. They learn to recognize how their friends are feeling, interact conversationally, and learn valuable coping skills, as well. It’s a fun, interactive platform for the ipad specifically.
Feel Electric by Sesame Street. Description from the App Store: “This app offers engaging tools that use content and curriculum from The Electric Company to provide opportunities to explore emotional vocabulary and self-expression. It was given the 2013 ON for Learning Award and 2012 Parents’ Choice Recommended. On this app, you can play games with one or multiple users, keep a digital diary, and even create your own mood dude!
Conversation Builder Deluxe. From the App Store: “This app is designed to help elementary aged children learn how to have multi-exchange conversations with their peers in a variety of social settings.” The award won the Top Social Skills App of 2012 as well as a host of others. There is also a version for teens.
The Social Navigator App. Description from the App Store: “The Social Navigator is a revolutionary social skills app developed to assist children with social and behavioral challenges in adapting their behavior and developing life-long social skills. It’s a pricey app but says that it helps children with 70 specific social skills and prepares them for upcoming events. Might be an important one to rehears holiday visits in just a few months!
Calm Counter. Description from the App Store: “Calm Counter is a visual and audio tool to help people calm down when they are angry or anxious. The app includes a social story about anger, and audio/visual tools for calming down.” The app literally counts down for your child out loud and gives them tools to learn self-awareness and ways to calm themselves down when they are angry or anxious.
Join us on Tuesdays for more info on how you can continue to use technology for good…
in your life and in the lives of your tech-savvy kids.