Touch Trainer is a great app.  It was the very first app I chose for our son after making the choice to try an iPad with him.  Touch Trainer does one thing – it trains someone lacking in communication and fine motor skills how to properly touch and make a choice on a touch screen.  Prior to using this app, our 2 year old autistic son swiped, slapped, and scratched at the iPad.  Without being able to point (a common developmental delay for autistic children and a Red Flag), Callum would not be able to use many of the nifty apps designed for him.  I started the app and – cue the violins – Callum was mesmerized.  I had to show him the first couple of times what would happen when he correctly touched the large square image on the screen.  (It began dancing all over the screen to music.)  Callum then began to pull my hand toward the iPad to see more of this dancing square.  I used hand over hand to make him choose the image for a couple of minutes.  I was soon able to pull my hand back to touch his wrist, and then elbow, until he was finally able to do it on his own.  (Amusingly, he spent several minutes insisting I touch his other arm, innocently believing that he couldn’t do it without that particular form of assistance.)  Within 15 minutes, Callum was able to use a touch screen to achieve a desired result.  That is rudimentary communication, folks.  Yep, I teared up on the spot.  Highly recommended.

Touch Trainer is $6.99 in the App store.  You can get it here:

8 responses »

  1. Susan says:

    Hi Leigh, Am going to download the Grace App tomorrow so I’ll see how it goes. Must look at the iCommunicate and see what it’s like. Thanks for the reply. Love your blog

  2. CatHerder says:

    Susan, I didn’t download it because it was $25, and because I have something similar that I already paid more for. We have iCommunicate, which I think is really good. You can easily make your own picture cards as well. It’s $50, but it has a lot more positive reviews than the Grace app which seems to have a suspiciously high amount of criticism. I repeat that I haven’t used it however. I do like iCommunicate…

  3. Susan says:

    Hi there I am a special ed teacher and am just about to purchase the Grace app for a wee girl in my class who is non verbal and diagnosed with ASD. Just wondering if you’ve used any thing like it with your son?

    • CatHerder says:

      I haven’t, but, after fixing dinner, I’ll take a look at it, if it’s cheap or free, that is! lol I’ll get back to you. 🙂

    • Sue Rodgers says:

      To Susan. We got the Grace app for our special needs daughter and she can’t use it because she cannot choose the category. You will have to pick a few pecs and to give her choices. We also had a problem with our daughter wanting to push the menu button all the time. We are going to try this touch trainer now to see if she will get a hang of that. Then we might go back to the Grace program, simplified.

      • Susan says:

        Thanks for that, Sue. I’ve been in touch with the Graceapp developer and she was really helpful with ideas and suggestions. She actually organised for an iPhone complete with otterbox cover to be delivered to my school on a loan basis so that I could try the app with a child in my class. I’m sure she’d only be delighted to hear your comments. I’m in the process of putting my student’s pictures on the app at the moment. I will be introducing it to her in January. So I’ll see how it goes. Thanks for the feedback.

  4. […] This is another really nifty little app that does one thing very well.  After using the Touch Trainer app to teach our son how to interact with a touch screen, this is the app we moved to next.  It […]

  5. Jenny Lisle says:

    We bought Noah a Dell Streak 7 for Christmas this year and are looking for Autism related apps to download on this tablet. The only way we got through him getting the flu shot without passing out this year was to distract him with some apps on his Daddy’s cell phone. His handwriting is still horrible, but we are less worried about whether he can physically write, as long as he can communicate.

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