Nicole's Nook Occupational Therapy Technology as Therapy

Nicole’s Nook: More Apps for Heading Back to School

As we approach the beginning of another school year for our children, I thought that I would highlight a few apps to optimize their school performance. Below are five especially useful apps for your consideration.
JotNot Scanner Pro, $1.99

  • This universal app takes a picture of a worksheet. You can then crop it and turn it directly into a PDF.  From there, you can email, print, fax or save it directly into your photo library.  Perhaps the most remarkable feature of this app is that you can actually open the document in a variety of other apps, including iAnnotate.
  • This app is also beneficial in the classroom, allowing students to get started on their work immediately.  The student, aide or teacher can take the photo, eliminating the need to wait for the work to be scanned or emailed.  You can also scan multiple pages and even export them to iBooks, so you can use the accessibility features.

iAnnotate, $9.99

  • This iPad-only app allows you to use a variety of tools to make notes on a PDF or document.  These tools include, but are not limited to, a colored pen, a highlighter, a typewriter, stamps and a microphone, as well as strike-through, caption and underline functions.  You can also customize multiple toolbars for frequently used tools.
  • If you are using this app in the classroom, you can make notes and complete a worksheet using your finger!  If you have an iPad 3 or higher, you can also use the built-in dictation feature to speak your answers in the text boxes.
  • Your finished product can be shared via email, Dropbox or Google Drive.  It can also be viewed and edited in most external PDF readers.

Co-Writer, $17.99

  • This universal app creates documents and features word prediction, text to speech and spelling support.  It uses a standard QWERTY keyboard, which cannot be customized. It includes a main dictionary, which can be adjusted, as well as topic dictionaries. Some topic dictionaries are built into the app, but Co-Writer also has the ability to create custom dictionaries, involving a web search on a specific topic and the subsequent creation of the topic dictionary.
  • There are a variety of popular sharing options for the created documents.

Explain Everything, $2.99

  • This app is an interactive whiteboard, which allows you to annotate and narrate slides. You can create dynamic lessons, activities and tutorials, as well as create slides with color and text.  It records on-screen drawings, annotations and object movement. It also captures audio using the iPad microphone.
  • You can import and export easily, including photographs, as well as PDFs, PowerPoint and Keynote files from Dropbox, Evernote, email and camera roll.  It does not require creating an account to use.

myMemoir, $1.99

  • This is a journaling app that boasts a simple user interface.  The finished product is easy to export and can include photos or videos.

Also don’t forget to use some of the great built-in features and apps available on the iPad.

  • The Calendar can be used to track assignments, send reminders, and assist with overall organization.
  • Enabling Speak Selection will allow text to speech whenever the text is highlight. This can be particularly helpful to students with auditory processing and reading difficulties.
  • Set a Locked Timer by creating a Passcode Lock and Setting the Timer for the amount of time you want your student or child to play.  Then select STOP PLAYING, SET and START.  Now go to the app you want to play.  When the time is up, the iPad automatically goes to the lock screen.  This can be a great way to terminate those preferred games and apps, and redirect your children in a functional way!

Here’s to another great school year!!
Nicole Weckherlin, OTR/L