QuickCues

App review by
Vicki Windman, Common Sense Media
QuickCues App Poster Image
Text-heavy social scripts for kids on the autism spectrum.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn the social skills needed to communicate with their peers and adults. Topics include how to answer the phone, how to ask the teacher for help, and how to moderate tone of voice. Kids who've been struggling with how to learn these skills can use the app's prompts with an adult to practice everyday communication skills, along with other life skills such as hygiene and stress management. QuickCues can provide on-the-spot information when kids face particular social situations, but younger kids and reluctant readers will need help applying the tips and skills the app offers.

Ease of Play

Simply tap the category you want, and purple cue cards guide you through the activity. But kids will benefit from the app much more if parents guide them through it.

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that QuickCues is an app for kids who struggle with social interactions. Its goal is to provide social scripts to help your kid communicate in everyday situations. Kids will get the most out of it if you guide them through it. There's no text-to-speech option, so if you have a non-reader or a child who has reading difficulties, you'll need to assist him or her. The situations are realistic but hypothetical, which can be difficult for kids who struggles with abstract thinking.

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What's it about?

QUICKCUES can help kids learn communication skills using provided scripts. Your initial purchase comes with one category: Communication. Suggestions are provided to help guide your child through 10 communication situations, which include talking on the phone and asking for help from a teacher. The Communication section also addresses body language and fostering common interests. You can purchase four other categories -- Coping, Life Skills, Socialization, and On the Job -- which cover everything from having good hygiene to giving compliments. After you tap on a category, you swipe through a series of slides that offer tips and scripts appropriate to that situation. There are no images, only bullet points of information, similar to a PowerPoint presentation.

Is it any good?

If you're looking for a basic tool to help your kid with communication and life skills, QuickCues may be able to help by providing specific information and scripts that kids can access when needed. It's important to know that the app is most useful when used with another person and that in-app purchases are required to get the four other content areas. For kids who are reluctant readers, this app may be difficult because it's text-heavy, and there's no text-to-speech feature.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the kinds of social interactions they have during a typical day. Whom do they talk to? What do they talk about?

  • Do some role-playing to practice different types of social interactions.

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
  • Subjects: Language & Reading: discussion, speaking
  • Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: applying information, asking questions, decision-making, problem solving, strategy, thinking critically
    Self-Direction: personal growth, work to achieve goals
    Emotional Development: empathy, handling stress, identifying emotions, labeling feelings, moving beyond obstacles, perspective taking, self-awareness
    Communication: asking questions, conveying messages effectively, friendship building, listening, multiple forms of expression, presenting, speaking
    Collaboration: respecting other viewpoints
    Responsibility & Ethics: integrity, making wise decisions, respect for others
  • Price: $4.99
  • Pricing structure: Paid
  • Release date: September 12, 2013
  • Category: Education
  • Topics: Friendship, High School
  • Size: 2.10 MB
  • Publisher: Fraser
  • Version: 1.7
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 6.0 or later

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