Scene Speak

Common Sense Media says

Useful creation tool can help with vocabulary, expression.

Age(i)

2
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Quality(i)

 

Learning(i)

What parents need to know

Ease of play

This app is not intuitive, and it may take a few tries for parents to get used to the various steps and settings for creating pages and books. There's a 32-page tutorial for use with this app, both on the app and on the developer's website (website preferred, so you can view the pages you are creating and follow the directions step-by-step on the website). It's not intuitive on the creating (Edit Mode) side, but the Play Mode is very easy to use.

Violence & scariness
Not applicable
Sexy stuff
Not applicable
Language
Not applicable
Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable
Privacy & safety

Books can be shared with other iPads via file sharing and can be backed up using iCloud.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Scene Speak is like a create-and-store digital library for photo books, flash cards, diagrams, and more. Parents or teachers can make photo books of kids' favorite stories, family photos, vocabulary words, and almost anything else they need to practice vocabulary skills. There's a 32-page tutorial on the app and its developer's website, which most first-time users will need to follow because the process of making the pages and books isn't intuitive. There are many features here, including uploading images from your device's camera or the Internet, adding your own voice or using text-to-voice audio, and creating "hot spots" on the pages that kids can tap to hear and see the word associated with the object in that section of the page. Once parents or teachers master the basics, Scene Speak can grow into a customized resource that's easy for kids to use.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Language & Reading

  • speaking
  • letter or word recognition
  • naming

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • part-whole relationships

Communication

  • speaking
  • listening

Tech Skills

  • digital creation

Engagement, Approach, Support

Engagement

Kids can record their own voices or hear a parent or teacher's voice recording rather than using prerecorded text-to-voice. Adding personalized images to the pre-loaded scenes can also increase engagement.

Learning Approach

By viewing and listening to information about the scenes and social stories, kids learn vocabulary in context. The "hot spot" feature is particularly helpful in highlighting details of a page for kids to tap and hear specific words.

Support

Reading the 32-page tutorial is essential to fully understand how to use Scene Speak most effectively. It would be nice to see more on-screen prompts or a video tutorial, rather than wading through such a long written help section.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Language & Reading

  • speaking
  • letter or word recognition
  • naming

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • part-whole relationships

Communication

  • speaking
  • listening

Tech Skills

  • digital creation

Kids can learn vocabulary and context on Scene Speak. Kids can also practice naming, listening, and speaking, if they are prompted to repeat the words they hear. Depending on the pages that parents or teachers create on Scene Speak -- and especially if kids use the "hot spot" feature -- kids can also learn about part-whole relationships. For example, if a kid taps on a hot spot of him- or herself in a class photo and hears the phrase "I am a classmate," that can help make the connection that they are a part of the class. Scene Speak is a useful tool to help kids learn words in the context to which they belong.

This Learning Rating review was written by Dana Villamagna

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What's it about?

SCENE SPEAK opens into the Visual Screen Display (VSD) Library containing pre-made visual pages: Park, Child's Bedroom, Doctor's Office, and more. Tap on one, and the page opens to reveal items inside that room or details of a diagram. Tap on My Books and "edit mode" to create a book or VSD. You can also edit existing VSD pages and add audio. Read the help section (or the tutorial on the website for easier viewing) before trying to create a book. Scene Speak is not intuitive on the creating (Edit Mode) side, but the Play Mode is very easy to use. It can be a useful tool for creating flash cards, pages, and books to help kids learn vocabulary and self-expression.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

For parents who want to customize sequences of images, books, photo albums, and more for their kids, Scene Speak may be just the right app. There's a 32-page tutorial that is essential reading to get the most out of the features and to make VSDs (pages) that will be effective. Settings include being able to record your own voice or your kid's voice, using prerecorded text-to-voice, or not using audio at all. The "hot spot" feature is particularly helpful in highlighting details of a page for kids to tap and hear specific words. For the price, it would be nice to see more on-screen prompts or a video tutorial, rather than wading through such a long written help section. Still, with a bit of patience, Scene Speak can become a go-to tool to create books and pages to help your kid learn vocabulary, social stories, and more.

Families can talk about...

  • Encourage kids to tap on the hot spots that you create and repeat the words they hear.

  • Record audio of your kids to make a photo book in which they can hear themselves saying key words.

App details

Device:iPad
Price:$9.99
Pricing structure:Paid
Release date:October 10, 2012
Category:Education
Size:26.70 MB
Publisher:Good Karma Applications, Inc
Version:2.03
Minimum software requirements:iOS 5.1 or later

This review of Scene Speak was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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