Debra L. Kerner M.S. CCC/SLP
This app is designed for parents, speech-language pathologists and others who work with social skill groups for ages 3-10. While the authors originally designed the app for those ages, I feel this app could easily be used for older children and teens with some slight modification to the lessons they already have in place. This social skills app is more for groups and classes rather than individuals or very small groups. This app can be used not only for students who struggle with social skills, but also for regular kids in a general education setting.
This app provides a myriad of social skills lessons and sample 8-week lesson plans for students with different temperaments. They provide suggestions for 8-week collaborative projects for social skills groups that include an Introductory Program, Making a Movie, Making a Board Game, and Creating an Active Game. Their program could realistically be an entire school year’s lesson plans for a social skills group. This app also has an interactive game for 2 or more players called “What’s In The Bag?” which can easily be played in a large group setting.
They have activities children with a wide range of personalities that they describe as ‘everyone’, ‘cautious’, ‘exuberant’, ‘quirky’, and ‘strong willed’.
The social skills activities they designed are based on their social skills assessment that can be purchased from their website, http://www.all4mychild.com . While this assessment would be very beneficial, it is not necessary to utilize this app and be able to implement the lessons.
Their IMAGINE Success ® activities are based upon this assessment and have included visual cartoons and phrases to help remind kids of the social skills they are working on.
- Initiating Interactions
- Maintaining Interactions
- Advocating and Negotiating
- Getting Regulated
- Interpreting Nonverbals
- Negotiate Space
- Experiencing Humor
The nautical icons on the home screen relate to each of these social skills. Each icon around the helm focuses on each of these IMAGINE social skills and lead to many activity ideas for each skill with suggestions for each temperament type.
What I liked about this app—I liked how each social skill was divided up and so many activities were provided for each one and related to children with different temperaments. They also had suggestions for “what if” in case something possibly happened during the activity with links to them. The interactive “what’s in the bag” game is very fun.
What I struggled with—Navigating through this app easily and being able to easily find the explanations of the picture symbols on the home page was difficult. I struggled with having to remember what skill was being addressed when reading through the myriad of therapy ideas. While the explanations for each skill being taught are detailed and pretty thorough, the explanations for the temperaments and how to navigate through the app could be more in depth. I feel the Home page could provide more visuals and explanations so that users don’t have to look so hard for them. Their suggestions for the 8-week course activities could possibly be labeled easier for quicker access. However, I think this will be coming when the authors do an update in the very near future.
About our Columnist/Reviewer: Debra L. Kerner M.S. CCC/SLP (aka dibsondebs)
Speech-Language Pathologist who worked in schools for 16 years and now works in Home Health and in Private Practice
Debra has been a speech-language pathologist for the past 17 years. She currently works with both pediatrics and young adults in private practice and in home health. She previously has worked in the school district for the past for 16 years with young adolescents with a wide range of disabilities including autism, articulation, intellectual disability and augmentative communication.
Debra is also past co-chairman for the Regional Association Coalition for Texas Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She has presented at TSHA on stuttering as well as to the Dallas chapter of the National Stuttering Association. She has also presented at SPAND and at TSHA on adolescent language disorders.
Debra L. Kerner is the past president of Speech-Language Pathologists’ Association Near Dallas (SPAND). She has also served as the organization’s membership chairman, treasurer, and co-vice president. She is past president of the Political Action Committee (PAC) for the Texas Speech-Language-Hearing Association and was involved with the TSHA Executive Council from 1998-2010.
Debra graduated in 1992 from Texas Woman’s University with her Bachelor of Science in Deaf Education and in 1996, with her Master of Science in Communication Sciences and Disorders.