I will have to look at that. He's becoming quite adept at using PECS at school and is beginning to put sentences together, using the "I want" card. Cards tend to be sabotaged at home, by big brother, so we need a portable alternative.
Iirc Makaton do an app? It allows you to create folders to lace groups,of symbols in and starts off with the simple symbols, builds up through the selection and keeps developing as the child develops their skills. Iirc you can get to the point you can type what you want to ask.
If it's not Makaton that does it I can find out on Tuesday who it is - our AAC teacher is not in until then.
I think it's called my homie or something similar. I know there is a free app (the very basics) that you could download and try.
Also heard prologue is brilliant.
DS uses an iPad app called text to speak. It reads to him what he's written. (His is a literacy aid) I wonder whether your ds would enjoy something like this for the individual letters as he's loving alphablocks at the moment?
I have the lite version of the Makaton app - choice pad, but I don't think it's that instinctive to use so don't feel good about forking out for the full or pro version. My Makaton trainer said it's good form to use the Makaton symbols, as they're consistent, but DS2 struggles to recognise a lot of them. He does better with coloured symbols and with the flexibility to add in photos of specific items eg flapjack or fruitus bar.
Considering getting him an iPod Touch, as it's a little more portable than a tablet. There does appeaar to be shockingly little for Android, or else I'd be trying out the apps for his Nook, which he has access to, most of the time. I think it would be useful to have something with no games on, though.
The only problem with Gridplayer Ouryve, is that unless you have The Grid (which costs money!) on your main computer, you can't edit the program, and personalise it. It's a good programme, but even the best programs still need personalising. Before you commit to it, I would decide whether you would be able long term to purchase The Grid as well. The other slightly annoying thing is that because you can only edit within the Grid, you can't quickly add things, for instance, when you're out and about.
Also, on the iPad, you are limited to certain symbol sets - Widget (good!), Makaton (not so good!), and symbolpics I think. You can't use PCS, which is very widely used in schools, due to licensing issues.
That might not matter at all. I'm sorry I can't remember how old your son is, but if he is in school (or about to be), where a particular symbol set is used, then I would go with that. Children learn symbols (when they're working well for them) as a language - so switching from PCS to widget (for example), would be like switching from Italian to Spanish.
I'm personally not a fan of the iPad as a platform for communication programmes. There are millions to choose from, but I've yet to see one that I really like and would recommend. I would at present always suggest an android system, as - for instance - you can run The Grid directly onto that. And then you have masses more (quality) choice of programmes.
Always good to get some specialist advice though if you can - to make an AAC system work it needs to be completely personalise and tailored to your son and your situation, so getting it right is key. Do you have a specialist SLT service you can ask for referral too? If he's getting on well with PECS it sounds like you're right to seize the moment and try to move him on!
That's good to know, SingySongy. He's 7 and currently in mainstream and is using the symbols around school. His SALT can create and print off whatever symbols he needs there. It's not working at home, though. Symbols are routinely hidden or destroyed by a big brother who also has ASD but is entirely unsympathetic towards DS2's needs.
DS2 is very able with technology, considering his other limitations, so I want to explore in the first place a relatively inexpensive solution. If we can make that work, in whatever limited way it's possible, then I have no problem with making a bigger investment in the long term. His current NHS SALT is not remotely tech savvy, so unless she can refer us onto someone with some expertise in AAC, I suspect I would have to see advice privately.
It's good to know that The grid can be purchased for Android. If nothing else, I can get DH on board with that - plus Android tablets are so much cheaper than apple!
I forgot to say, he can sight read words that matter to him, with font not seeming to matter too much, which gives him some potential flexibility with the exact symbols used, so long as they're not indecipherable outlines like some of the makaton pics.