April 12, 2013

Appy Hour: Multiple Choice Articulation

a review of Multiple Choice Articulation from Erik X. Raj


Have you seen or used Erik X. Raj's new iPad app: Multiple Choice Articulation? It's a fun new resource for targeting S, Z, R, L, SH, CH, TH in the initial/medial/final positions as well as S, R, L blends.


The Concept:
Multiple Choice Articulation is a fun way to practice target sounds in words, sentences, and carryover into conversation. Students are presented with a "Would you rather..." question and two choices. Usually the question and the choices contain a few words that include the target phonemes. Then students tell which option they would choose and why.


What's Great:
The app provides lots of awesome models of target speech sounds. You can choose to have the questions read aloud or read them to your students themselves. If your students are readers, they can read the questions to each other, providing even more opportunities to practice their sounds. Words containing target phonemes are presented in bold.


There are such fun questions in the app! Lots of them really make students use their imagination. Some of the choices are sort of disgusting (*see above). That isn't necessarily bad, but first grade boys certainly got a kick out of them!

Another thing I loved about the app was the great exposure to descriptive sentences that contain lots of detail words. This prompted longer answers from my students.

My students loved pushing the "Hear an Answer" button to see if their answer matched the example, which was great because they got that extra auditory input of correct models while listening. Some of them started giving themselves a point if their answers matched!


Things I Love:
+ This app is fun, fun, fun! It's also hilarious, thought-provoking, and sometimes gross! You've been warned!
+ The app is straight-forward and simple, user-friendly, and super easy to use.
+ Multiple Choice Articulation is great for targeting sounds in sentences and assisting in carryover of target phonemes into conversation. It can also be used for students working on forming correct sentences and other language skills. Answers lead to follow-up questions from other students, and even "debates" over which answer seems better. This app would be amazingly awesome for your fluency students working on using their fluency strategies in conversation!
+ The questions and answer choices elicit very entertaining conversations. This app could be used to prompt a student during a conversation sample.
+ I loved that students needed to also tell why they chose a particular answer. Even my Kindergarteners blew me away with their reasoning!
+ No in-app purchases or ads to accidentally click on!!


Suggestions for Future Updates:
- Questions targeting additional phonemes.
- Possibly include some picture prompts. My students didn't mind that there were no pictures as the interesting conversations were enough to keep them entertained. However, gross pictures to go with the gross choices might trigger even more conversation - and more silliness!
- I always appreciate a scoring option.
- Minor detail, but I'd include the option to stop playback of the Hear an Answer feature. There were a few times where impulsive students pressed that button and we'd need to listen to the entire answer before moving on. I began muting the iPad if that button was bumped before we were ready.
- The biggest update I'd like to see is a recording feature. My students love recording themselves in other articulation apps and then going back to listen if they were using their correct phonemes or not. I would appreciate a record button even more than pictures or a scoring feature.

Bottom Line:
Multiple Choice Articulation is a great resource to add to any SLP's iPad! It is currently $9.99 and available for iPad, iPad Mini, iPhone, and iPod Touch. Find it in the App Store. Also, be sure to read Erik's speech pathology blog. He has such creative and fun ideas, and tons of useful information!

Disclaimer: Erik X. Raj was super cool and kindly provided me with a copy of Multiple Choice Articulation. All statements and opinions are my own. 


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