iPods may help Asperger's kids navigate life

  • Article by: MAURA LERNER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 25, 2009 - 9:44 PM

A Minneapolis center is experimenting with the devices, and parents are hopeful.

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mensanJul. 26, 09 7:30 AM

I love it - using technology in a natural way to help people reinforce the changes they want to make in their lives. We are seeing only the tip of the iceberg in social skills and mental health applications.

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pilotman012Jul. 26, 09 8:02 AM

I am an App developer and have games on the iTunes App Store. I know for a fact my games have been used in special education situations as rewards for a student's good behavior and for completing their work. Look for "Marble Paint"

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NHMomJul. 29, 09 2:33 PM

As the mom of an ASD kid, I can tell you nothing can be as effective or meaningful as the right technology and software. If somebody can make a social skills tutorial that works on top of Pokemon's game engine, you'd make an unfathomable fortune.

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riverthymeJul. 30, 09 1:33 PM

It's good to see that this technology is helping challenged persons interact when they couldn't before but we need to watch for the opposite affect on healthy minds. A recent addition to classes which hone high school and college grad student skills for job interviews has been personal interaction. Turns out they have lost the ability to make eye-contact, form full sentences, write legible sentences (no text) - in general - socialize. What is an aid for one might be an anchor for another.

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cailinJul. 30, 09 2:56 PM

My teenaged son with Asperger's loves the Sims games. I can't think of a better fit, as far as a game that teaches kids the ins and outs of social interaction. If the "off the shelf" version of the game works as well as it does, think what could be achieved with a version that omits some of the more fantasy-oriented aspects of the original (which are my son's least favorite anyway) and concentrated on, say, getting ahead in the game by successfully entering and leaving conversations, reading body language, talking about things someone else is interested in, etc.

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bellczarAug. 4, 09 5:28 AM

They should pump those 30-second lessons into the elevators and restrooms on Capitol Hill. Mini-lessons on sexual harassment, mortgage deals, ethics, etc.

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casadeluzAug. 4, 09 2:05 PM

I really enjoyed the article and found it interesting in a number of ways. One of the options I have been researching is EMDR / CAER for ADHD and Aspergers help. The CAER program by Dr Weathers, which is basically an extension of EMDR, uses a computer interface and it seemed like the iPod might just fit into this program. On maybe the 'lighter side' -- (re 'Let the idea spread') Wouldn't it be interesting to give this to all Judicial/Legislators to help them understand what is socially acceptable behavior and what is not ? Just a thought.

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