Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Scene Speak: Talking pictures deliver communication!

Stock picture
The folks at Good Karma Applications (GKA) have made a host of really terrific applications including "First Then Visual Scheduler, and "Visual Schedule Planner".  Their latest app, at least the latest to come into my radar is "Scene Speak". My fellow Assistive Team member, Ashley Robinson brought it to my attention.  Ashley is often a guest blogger on Tech Ninja, and a Speech Therapist, so it may come as no surprise that this app addresses communication.

According to the folks at GKA,
"Scene Speak is versatile customizable app that provides a framework on the iPad to create interactive visual scene displays and social stories. Scene Speak allows an image to be edited with active “hotspots”. A hotspot is an area of the screen that can “sound areas” that can be selected and used as a means of communication. An image can have multiple “hotspots” that can be edited to add sound, text labels or link to another visual scene. In addition, images with text can be then can be added into “books” by theme or area of interest."
Hotspot on Slide

Adding Auditory and text
This app reminds me in some ways of Pictello, (an app that has quickly swept educational settings for students with Autism, TBI, and Learning Disabilities) but with a few nuances that differentiate the two.   Pictello is designed to create mutiple pages within a story or collection. Scene Speak creates a page at a time. The user can group them together though to make a story or collection. Also, Scene Speak allows the user to create mutiple hotspots that provide visual or auditory messages.  Both apps allow the user to take a photo, use a photo from the ipad library, or from the internet.  One significant difference is that Scene Speak sells for $9.99, roughly half Pictello's $18.99.

To the right is an example of one of the picture scenes provided, but it is just as easy to take an "in-app-photo" of your park or other setting and utilize that photo.

In Play Mode
I imagine using this app for a number of purposes including, preparing a student to transition to a new or unfamiliar place. I can see a care giver taking a picture of a new classroom, and creating hotspot in the picture, for example identifying where the student sits, where their backpack might go, and where/who the teacher and TA are.  I also think this would be a terrific vehicle to tell social stories, such as going to the cafeteria, or media center.  As an Occupational Therapist I can envision using it with manipulative to teach spatial concepts such as over, under, behind, left, and right.

I'd be curious to hear from others how you have utilized Scene Speak in your work.

Happy Therapy!

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