Rio Grande Valley gets a great response when introducing new apps to children at the Easter Seals Childcare Center!

Following a successful and informative meeting on the Bridging Apps program, we were excited to
try some apps with our children at the Easter Seals Child Care Center. It was a quick start-up as the
children gathered during center time and took turns working with the IPAD apps. Every day since, we
spend one hour with a group of about 10 children, using IPAD apps that enhance the learning topics that
the class is working on. One of their favorite apps is Toca Doctor which introduces different parts of the
body and allows the children to solve mini puzzles for each part of the body. After working with this app
for two days, they remembered the parts of the body and what puzzle they did to “cure” that body part.
Using the IPAD has become an instant hit for the children and it is exciting to support their motor and
cognitive skills and build their technology skills.

Here are some more apps we have introduced the children to!

ABC Music- The children liked reciting the alphabet and recognizing certain letters they already knew.
For the age group, they didn’t know all the letters, so it was cool for them to hear the letters when they
pressed it. The musical instruments for this age group were too advanced, so they didn’t recognize
them, but they did enjoy hearing the instruments being played. I lost their engagement after 7 letters
because they didn’t know the instruments or hadn’t learned all the letters yet.

Feed Animals-They really loved this app. It was the perfect game for this age group because it reinforced
the classroom learning theme. The animals were easy for the kids to recognize along with the food
the animal is supposed to eat. The children loved pressing and dragging the food towards the animal’s
mouth to hear it eat it. They were really intrigued by the colors and the sounds, especially when they
recognized it right away. They were so excited whenever they could drag the food and make it towards
the mouth. At first it was hard for them to understand how to press their finger on the screen and drag
it. This technology challenge was engaging and once they were able to master it, they were so excited
and happy because they had accomplished a new learning skill.

ABC Music- They loved guessing and anticipating the letter before the app told them. The group of
about 12 children loved taking turns pressing the IPAD screen to hear the letter pronunciation and then
listening to the instruments and guessing what they were. When they didn’t know the instruments,
they guessed what it could be by saying it looked like another instrument. Such as the cello, they said
it looked like a guitar, and when they heard what it was really called, they loved saying that word and
hearing what it sounded like.

The Monster At The End Of This Book-  The children were starting to get really loud from all
the excitement of having IPADs in the classroom but hearing a story was the remedy to engage them
and focus. The story was very entertaining and required interaction and that was exactly what they
liked. Every page required the children to do something different in order to get the character to turn
the page. From tickling him to breaking down barriers, the children enjoyed laughing and getting to see
the character get scared as they drew near the end of the book. Throughout the story, I kept asking
them why he was so scared or why we didn’t want to end the book, and the children kept responding
and coming up with their own interpretations of why he was so scared of the monster. It was amazing
getting to see them so excited about listening to the story and interacting with the character and using
turn-taking skills with each other—.At the end, they even wanted to listen to the story again.

Counting 123- They liked counting the animals and describing what each animal was and their colors.
The children were counting at a faster pace than the actual game, but we made it work by asking
questions about the animals and what they were doing and what colors they were.

Play123- This app is very interactive and great for small groups or individuals. The mini games require
the children to draw shapes and to stack shapes up. The children loved getting to draw the shapes.
The app requires the children to draw the shape almost exactly as it is in order for it to come up. This
would frustrate the children some just because in their minds, they were drawing the shape, but the app
wasn’t registering that shape. Or sometimes the drawing would be a triangle and the app would register
it as a circle. The children were challenged to practice drawing their shapes and practice viewing and
reciting their shapes and colors. Another one they enjoyed was the combinations of colors to create new
colors. They liked choosing the shapes and seeing how combining colors made new colors. The various
mini games included are great source of variety for the children.

Feed Animals- Another great game they love to play. They even ask me about the animals! They like
seeing the animal and figuring out what they eat! Easy app to get children to take turns and work
together to figure out what each animal is and what they eat.

Where’s Puppy- They enjoyed touching the screen and seeing where the body parts where located. To
make it more interesting, I continued to ask questions about the body part shown. Such as the mouth,
I’d ask, what’s in the mouth and they’d say tongue and teeth, etc.

Hungry Fish- They really liked looking for the number that was shown on the fish. They liked dragging
the bubble to the fish and seeing it get bigger. They knew their numbers and it made it more fun for
them to look for the numbers, especially when the “6” and “9” were together, it made it difficult to
decipher sometimes.

Clean up- This apps was a big hit for the children today. They LOVED looking at the different articles
of clothing, toys, and fruits. Some fruits they weren’t aware of before, but they recognized that it
was either a fruit or vegetable. I really enjoyed playing this game with them because I asked a lot of
questions pertaining to the object shown. Such as if a shirt was shown, I’d say it belonged in the toy box
and they quickly corrected me by saying it was clothes so it belonged in the closet. It was really amazing
watching them think about what they were doing and be able to communicate and understand what
I asked and what the game was about. This app was great to use for a big group so everyone could be
engaged by taking a turn with the IPAD and answering additional questions.

PepiBathLite- very interactive app that helps the children sequence the daily routines of waking up
and washing clothes. The children were engaged and they were very responsive to my questions and
demonstrated that they understood the concept.

TouchSound- Excellent app to help the children recognize sounds and match them with the objects.
It was challenging for their age group because some of the noises were unfamiliar. They were able to
recognized the noise that resembled something they were familiar with and use deductive reasoning to
figure out which object went with the noise. They really worked hard today!

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