While I had heard a lot about TapToTalk, we have not used it.
About Tap to Talk
TapToTalk is the portable, affordable, socially acceptable communication solution for non-verbal children with autism, apraxia, or any other speech disorder.
Through a PR agency I managed to get a parent’s point of view. This is from Fay Bareham:
I know I’m not the only parent that’s experienced life with a non-verbal child, but that doesn’t make it any less challenging. Every day becomes a struggle trying to meet your child’s needs. Understanding simple desires like what he or she wants to eat is hard enough, let alone how he or she feels or what they think.
My 11-year-old son is autistic and unable to talk. He’s had many Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) devices over the years, but they were heavy and made him feel “different” from the other kids. This past summer we had a huge breakthrough when we found TapToTalk, an application that runs on tablets and smartphones. We found out it could run on an iPod touch, which looks like everyone else’s phones. Suddenly, my son felt “cool” because his device looked just like his Dad’s phone clipped on his belt.
Since then, my son’s started using TapToTalk to speak to anyone: Friends, family members and even the folks at the corner store. He had what a friend called “a Helen Keller moment” when he realized that the application was actually speaking for him and he was able to communicate using it. His father and I were both thrilled that in less than a year, his vocabulary has increased by 400 percent!
There are a lot of benefits for families when it comes to using communication applications on everyday devices like iPads, iPods, e-readers and smartphones. Unlike the bulky, expensive AAC devices that have been commonly used in the past, these new types of communication applications are:
Socially acceptable, allowing the child to feel normal by carrying around devices parents and peers keep with them as well.
Portable, running on virtually all handheld devices, from tablets and smartphones to handheld games and computers
Customizable, offering parents and teachers the option to use the extensive library of images, text and sound or upload and create their own
Affordable, providing free versions, annual accounts or lifetime memberships
Even children that have trouble communicating verbally want to be understood. Applications like TapToTalk that give children their voices are changing lives for their entire families, like ours – one picture at a time.
Fay Bareham lives with her husband and son south of Houston on on a small farm with chickens, two mini donkeys, a horse, dogs and cats.