Black Sheep Press is a staple for every British Speech Therapist. We love their products here at SpeechBlogUK and were very excited when Alan asked us to try the new app version of the Talking about Secondary School pack.
I have used the paper version of this pack for a number of years with my Year 6’s, in the summer term before they transition to secondary school. But now there is an app version as well.
The app has 14 scenarios for discussion. Each situation then has four possible outcomes or options. The scenarios cover a range of social and organisation situations. For example getting lost, not knowing where to sit in the lunch hall or forgetting your homework. All 14 scenarios are displayed, so you can pick the one you want for a particular child, or work your way through them all.
Once you are in a scenario, there is text to read to the child at bottom and a question to start the discussion. You have the options to record responses and play them back or you can type notes. These recordings and notes can then be emailed to keep as a record. You then work through the four options and discuss how appropriate or not they might be. The main scenario picture and the 4 options are displayed at the side of the screen so you can easily move between them.
Within the settings you can change the background colour behind the words from white to yellow. This is designed to help children with reading difficulties. You also have the option to turn on/off text to speech. This reads the words and questions out on each page.
All the pictures are in colour and show teenagers/ older children. They are appealing for the older child. The layout is clear and the interface is easy to use. For more information and a video showing how the app works, look at the Black Sheep site.
The app is designed for children on the Autism Spectrum or children with learning difficulties. It will also be useful for any child who maybe a little anxious about going to secondary school.
This is a fantastic pack and now it is available digitally, you can always have it to hand. IT is currently available for £7.99. So if you are running transition groups, or working with some year 6’s who need support before they go to secondary school, this app is for you!