A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What 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'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?
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.
Talk to your kids about ...
- Device: iPad
- Subjects: Language & Reading: letter or word recognition, naming, speaking
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: part-whole relationships
Communication: listening, speaking
Tech Skills: digital creation
- 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
For kids who love creativity
Our editors recommend
Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.