Developing Social Skills with Apps
All children develop their social skills at different times and at different rates. Some children need extra support or direct instruction in the area of social skills in order to aide in the development of age-appropriate behaviors. Check out these apps to assist you in working with your child on social skill development.
A Little Book About Feelings is an eBook to help your child understand and learn to express the emotions they are feeling. The book is a great introduction to the concept of feelings or a study on different types of feelings. This app was created with the popular “Ruby Studio” that has a line of children books and activities that encourage development of emotional literacy. The story is filled with cute, fuzzy characters that express and share their emotions. The story book pages are created with intriguing artwork and colorful pictures. Ruby narrates a story that helps children understand that emotions change often and how important it is to talk about the emotions we are feeling. There are some interactive elements in the app but mostly it is a story that children will benefit from hearing over and over again. The book is appropriate for children ages 3-5, and is $.99.
Avokiddo Emotions opens with Avokiddo’s artistically created characters. Tap on the zebra, sheep or giraffe to play with the character. Next, objects fall onto the screen, and your child gets to choose which ones to attach to the character. For example, a big straw hat turns the character into a beach loving animal. With each object and scene, the characters display emotions associated with the scene and objects. Decide which foods to feed the characters to see how they will react and if they will like pumpkin, watermelon, or a sandwich. You can save your picture to your camera roll while playing or pull the lever to have all new objects come into the scene. Through this type of play, young children are learning about emotions, cause and effect, and body language. Sit with your child and discuss the emotions portrayed. Enjoy the artistic characters and play with their emotions and fun props. Avokiddo Emotions is appropriate for ages 3-5, and is $2.99.
Feel Electric supports children by helping them to learn about emotions. Games encourage children to describe how they are feeling, read facial expressions, and provide vocabulary to help express themselves. There are three main areas for students to choose from; My Life, My Games and My Stuff. In the My Life section, children can make their own Mood Dude, Mood Tale or Moodosphere based on their own experiences. The My Games area allows for game play based on emotions with three different games. The My Stuff area is a personalized center for pictures, videos and music within the app. The app is based on the PBS show The Electric Company and uses the characters from the show within the app. Spoken text supports this text rich environment. Real, energetic people narrate the app with lots of expression. This app is excellent for children who struggle with their emotions or need help understanding the emotions of others. The app is free and appropriate for children ages 4-8.
First Words: Feelings supports readers to build feeling words by letter and sound. A lot of support is provided for children starting on the journey to becoming readers and ultimately will help with writing through increasing vocabulary and providing spelling practice. Each feeling word is shown with a corresponding picture to describe the feeling. Parents can set up the appropriate environment for their child by adjusting the variety of settings. 38 feeling words paired with vibrant faces and options for parent customization is what makes this app a success. The app is $1.99 and is appropriate for children 4-7.
This blog post was originally published on the KinderTown Education Blog.