Steve Jobs while presenting the iPad in San Fr...
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The 60 Minutes Episode from 10/23/11 on discusses the biography of Steve Jobs and the phenomenal impact the iPad has had on the communication abilities of the autistic. I want to share the 60 Minutes Episode with you, some clips from the Episode, a few articles, some YouTube videos and my reflections on Apps and the iPad for Autism. The more content I watch and the more articles I read on the profound impact the iPad has had on the abilities and communication of the Autistic, the more I am blown away. Most people think Steve Jobs and Apple did not have the Autistic in mind when creating the iPad, nor did they realize the impact it would have on the Autistic, but boy has the iPad been a game-changer for Autism. After watching last night’s 60 Minutes Episode on the iPad for Autism, I want to share some content and reflections. This will blow you away too! As a former music teacher, I have had several Autistic students over the years. I wish the iPad had been around when I taught these students. I can see how the iPad would be a life changer for them. I will share more of my reflection at the bottom of this post. Please note that in my video section of this post there is a must see YouTube channel from Craig Evans. His channel is called autismhangout. On his channel he shares tons of ideas for using the iPad and Apps with the Autistic. He is a wealth of knowledge and his content is phenomenal.

This is the link to the full 60 Minutes Episode on Steve Jobs and the iPad for Autism.

Clips about Autism on the 60 Minutes Episode:

Here is a clip of Josh who has Autism using an iPad to communicate. This is the first time he has been able to communicate with people to this extent. His mother says, Josh has made an amazing transformation. This is stunning and cool!

Here is a short clip from the full 60 Minutes Episode of Temple Gardin’s unique brain. She has Asperger’s Syndrome a high functioning form of Autism. This is a very interesting clip to watch. This doctor may be onto something with the language connections in the brain. Only time will tell.

This clip shows an Autistic student using an iPad App for communication and learning. Ian, his teacher tested the student for how much vocabulary the student knew. Ian, the teacher had no idea his autistic student had that much language knowledge. Ian discovered his autistic student loved Opera. Amazing!

In this clip Autism teachers are asked if they think iPad apps are overblown and overrated. The teachers say no. Parents have witnessed the amazing transformation the iPad has had on the communication abilities of their children.

Links to Articles about i-Pads for Autism:

Autism Speaks lists tons of Autism Apps for use on the iPad on their website. This is a must check-out link and a must bookmark. It lists all sorts of Apps, descriptions and links to the Apps.

The Squidalicious blog has a huge Spreadsheet of iPad Apps for Autism. Please check this out, Bookmark or Save it. This is a must have resource I highly recommend if you are looking for Apps for all sorts of academic content areas for Autism.

iPads For Autism Being Shipped! This is an articles about Danny’s Wish, raising funds to provide iPads to Autistic children.

iPads, Android boosting brain power in Florida This article has a fantastic video clip of two Autistic twins using the i-Pad for communication with their mom. During the video their mom discusses the profound difference the iPad has had on her sons’ abilities. Included is an article which discusses the iPad for Autistic students at schools in Florida.

This is a link to a video and an article on an ABC News Broadcast called, “Autism community sees promise in iPad apps.”

Thanks, Steve Jobs from an Autism MomI first read this article several weeks ago. It circulated through the Twittersphere and was ReTweeted by many educators who use Twitter to network, collaborate and share articles. Many of us educators were inspired by this mom’s tribute and thank you to Steve Jobs. Some people call Steve Jobs an innovator or a game-changer. This mom calls him, “Glorious, wondrous, hopeful possibility,” because of the positive effect and transformation the iPad has had on her son. This tribute is an inspiration and a must read.

Videos of iPads being Used with the Autistic:

This video is a fantastic introduction to the features of an iPad and why it is great as an assistive technology tool in education. [youtube]

This is a wonderful video created by an Autistic mom. She thanks Steve Jobs and shows some of the Apps that she loves to use with her Autistic child.[youtube]

This video is the beginning of a series of videos that Craig Evans has created in discussing “Apps for Autism”. He reports on Apps, interviews the creators of Apps and share ideas for using the i-Pad with the Autistic. Here is the link to his autismhangout YouTube Channel where all of his videos can be viewed. Everyone reading this should check out his channel and bookmark it or subscribe. Craig is a wealth of knowledge and the content he shares in his videos is amazing. I have featured a few more of his videos from his autismhangout below. [youtube]

This video gives a very clear example of a boy using the iPad for academic learning. You can see his excitement with the instant feedback. [youtube]

This video is a news broadcast of a four-year old Autistic child using the iPad. It lists the popular App for Autistic communication. [youtube]

This video is from Apple…the iPad is a game changer for Autism. [youtube]

Here is a video overview of the Grace App for Autism, a communication App for the Autistic. [youtube]

This video gives a good close-up overview of how the Proloquo2Go App works for use by the Autistic. [youtube]

This video gives good step-by-step instructions for using the App Proloquo2Go. [youtube]

Here is an introduction and overview of the DTT Numbers App for the iPad for learning numbers. [youtube]

This is a must see. It is an interview by Craig Evans from the autismhangout YouTube Channel. He interviews a father who is an App tester and knows all about many of the Apps used for students with Autism. There is a lot of content and knowledge from him. [youtube]

This is a must see as well. It is an interview also by Craig Evans with “Apps for Autism” author Lois Brady. She gives a lot of information and content here about the iPad, Apps and meeting IEP goals as a teacher. [youtube]

In this video, a father overviews several iPad Apps that have been beneficial for his Autistic son. This is a great video overview of different Apps and how the iPad works. [youtube]

My Reflection:

Like I mentioned above, I am blown away at the Apps available and the impact the iPad has had on many Autistic. I currently am not teaching music, however, if I were still teaching music I can imagine the endless possibilities for using the iPad with my Autistic students. Music class is normally difficult for Autistic students because of the noise and commotion that takes place in the class. The noise really bothers these students. They don’t like the noise and the constant moving around/ commotion that music class incorporates. An iPad could be used by Autistic students in music class to put on headphones and complete music-related Applications that are applicable and related to the Music Class Lesson Objectives and Standards of Learning. The iPad could help an Autistic student stay focused in the music classroom. I can imagine so many wonderful options and ideas. I wish I was teaching music now so I could use an iPad with an Autistic music student and see the wonderful impact it has on them. I love seeing students smile in amazement and become thrilled over learning using technology. I’d love to see that thrill and excitement of an Autistic student. It’s powerful!

After viewing the 60 Minutes Episode, reading the articles I have included in this post, and after watching the YouTube videos I have included here as well, the words that keep coming to my mind are, “Blown away, cool, gloriously wonderfully shocking, amazingly creative, wow, love it, etc.” That is my conclusion and reaction to how the iPad is changing the abilities and communication of the Autistic. I can’t wait to hear, see and read more content. It is truly phenomenal. Thank you 60 Minutes for broadcasting this inspirational Episode and story. And lastly, thank you Steve Jobs for creating this fabulous device that is game-changing the learning and communication of the Autistic. Hats off to you!

If you are music teacher and are reading this, I’d love for you to share how you have used the iPad with Autistic students and how you have differentiated instruction with your other music students and with your Autistic students. If you are not a music teacher and have experience using the iPad with Autism, please share your experiences as well. I’d love to engage in discussion and learn from you. I love hearing stories.

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Beth Crumpler is the founder of adaptivelearnin. Beth is an educator who is passionate about platforms for adaptive learning and curriculum design. She earned her B.A. in music education from Southeastern University, M.S. in TESOL from Shenandoah University, and 42 graduate-level credits from several universities in California. Beth is an experienced teacher, curriculum writer, blogger, and elearning course developer in the fields of ESL and music education. She has written learning content for several major educational companies/institutions. Her strongest asset is in using needs analysis and thinking creatively to develop adaptive educational materials both through kinesthetic hands-on and technological platforms to meet the diverse learning needs of students regardless of age, learning need and content area. Beth has taught students of many linguistic, cultural, and socio-economic backgrounds. She loves her work, loves to bring positive humor to it whenever possible, and is seriously dedicated to the profession. Beth's experiences teaching for numerous content areas, diverse populations, and a wide range of age groups is what propelled her with the vision to create adaptivelearnin. Her vision has been to support educators in finding resources which support learning through modified and targeted experiences so that all students receive individualized learning to facilitate their educational growth needs. Adaptivelearnin is a place where educators can find digital and hands-on adaptive learning resources for planning and instructional purposes. Beth does freelance curriculum writing, article writing/blogging, and online course development. For inquires about hiring Beth for work, please email her at Go to to check out published articles Beth has written. Opinions are her own and are not those of her employer, or previous employers.

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