Tom Taps Speak

App review by
Vicki Windman, Common Sense Media
Tom Taps Speak App Poster Image
Simple way to help nonverbal kids express themselves.

Parents say

age 5+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids can learn how to express themselves using the built-in images or keyboard to create favorite sentences. When they open Tom Taps Speak, there are folders sorted by category that allow them to quickly express a word or a quick phrase. The goal is to empower kids to express themselves with ease and independence. Tom Taps Speak is easy to use and will help kids learn to say how they're feeling or what they need just by tapping.

Ease of Play

Simply open the first board and add favorite words or clusters of words. Kids also can use the labeled folders to quickly respond. The built-in voice verbalizes the pictures, letters, and names of folders.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff

Additional boards can be purchased in-app.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Tom Taps Speak is an augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) device to help nonverbal kids communicate. It's free to use some functionality but requires an in-app purchase for the ability to fully customize boards. Kids select from hundreds of images to communicate their thoughts, emotions, or wants, and a keyboarding function is available for kids who can type.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 5-year-old Written bygwenharris July 11, 2018

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What's it about?

TOM TAPS SPEAKS is a no-frills app that helps kids who are either nonverbal or have speech-production issues. Simply open the first board, and your child can tap out his or her needs, wants, and emotions using more than 500 cards. Kids can save favorite expressions or simply go to a folder and tap the item they need or want. The free version is a good introduction to learning how to use an augmentative communication app. There's an option to purchase a customizable feature as in-app purchases, which allows you to add your own photos and voice.

Is it any good?

Tom Tap Speaks is a beginner's app in the world of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) apps, and it's much simpler than pricier apps such as Go Talk Now or AVAZ Pro. The free version doesn't have a lot of bells and whistles, but it does allow kids to choose from more than 500 cards that identify quick phrases, places, food, pain, and emotions. If you're looking to try an AAC app, this would be a good start. It's easy to learn to use for parents and kids and easy to upgrade if it works for your child.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how best to use Tom Taps Speaks: Which pictures are the most appealing? Why? Which needs and wants are best expressed using the app?

  • For kids who can type, discuss which short-hand communication you might use about everyday topics.

App details

  • Device: iPad
  • Subjects: Language & Reading: letter or word recognition, naming, speaking
  • Skills: Emotional Development: identifying emotions, labeling feelings
    Communication: conveying messages effectively, multiple forms of expression
    Tech Skills: using and applying technology
  • Price: Free
  • Pricing structure: Free
  • Release date: November 21, 2014
  • Category: Education
  • Size: 21.50 MB
  • Publisher: Seer Technologies
  • Version: 2.0
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 7.0 or later
  • Last updated: November 11, 2020

Our editors recommend

For kids who love expressing themselves

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