7 apps for kids with developmental disabilities to help at school

screenshot of iphone setup screen for appShopping for school supplies can be quite a chore for any family, but finding the right tools for students with a learning disability can be especially challenging.

There are so many apps in the iTunes App and Android Google Play stores, but how do you know which one is right for your child? The team here at Easter Seals Crossroads decided to research this topic and recommend seven unique apps that your student might find useful at both school and at home:

  1. ModMath is a free app created by Henry, a student with dyslexia and dysgraphia. This app allows users to type math problems instead of writing them by hand, which can be very helpful for individuals with dyslexia, dysgraphia, and ADHD. The app displays virtual graph paper and a calculator. It also provides the option for the user to print out his/her work, or email it to a teacher. For more information, check out their Kickstarter page.
  2. Voice Dream Reader is a text-to-speech app that offers the widest selection of high quality voices of any accessible reader. With this app, users can read virtually anything such as PDF, Word, and text files in Dropbox, Google Drive and more. Voice Dream Reader is also fully accessible with VoiceOver support for people with visual impairments. It is highly customizable to fit each individual’s needs. Children with dyslexia, auditory-processing or vision impairments may find this app especially beneficial. This is a great tool to help children learn how to use adaptive technologies to achieve academic and personal goals.
  3. Lectio is an app created by a mom from Indianapolis for her son after he was diagnosed with dyslexia. Lectio is very user friendly and does not require an internet connection; simply launch the app, take a picture, and press and highlight a word to have it read aloud. There is also a dictionary feature that can easily be accessed by pressing and holding down on a word.
  4. Speech Selection Hero

    Speech Selection Hero

    Speech Selection is not an actual app that you can purchase but is instead already built into iOS5; located in the accessibility features in Apple devices. Much like the app Lectio that was mentioned earlier, this feature allows you to select a paragraph and have it read aloud. The text can be read in a variety of languages and also includes a dictionary option. Unfortunately, it does not allow you to take a picture like Lectio and is only available for Apple devices. Still, it is a wonderful option for individuals with dyslexia, visual impairments, or other learning disabilities.

  5. Epic Win is an app that transforms homework, household chores and tasks into an exciting game! By “destroying” a task you earn points to level up your character. Homework and chores tend to be extremely mundane for most individuals. For individuals with ADHD, the dullness makes it ever harder to focus and complete chores. With Epic Win, homework and chores will never be the same.
  6. Inspiration Maps is a visual learning tool that allows students to create organized diagrams and outlines. It is recommended by the International Dyslexia Association for literacy instruction. Inspiration Maps is intended for students in fourth grade and up, but they do have another version for grades K-5.
  7. iThoughts is a unique mind mapping tool that helps students organize the thoughts or ideas they would like to use in a paper. Many individuals with learning disabilities struggle with organization, and with this app, individuals might have an easier time organizing their information, thoughts and ideas effectively.

Shopping for school supplies can be tricky, but we hope that these apps help ease your transition into the new school year. For more information on apps and assistive technology, visit the INDATA Project, or check with your local Easter Seals.

Plus, if you have any app suggestions, we’d love to hear them! Post them in the comments below.


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  1. tutu helper Says:

    These kids are really awesome. I just love them. Thanks for sharing.

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