Chicago Speech Therapist Recommends Educational iPad App for Children and Toddlers

Learn to Talk is a best-selling iPhone and iPad app that encourages language skills by using interactive flashcards to build your toddler’s verbal abilities. Unlike other digital flashcard sets which focus primarily on building vocabulary, Learn to Talk follows a developmental progression designed to build a holistic concept of language and its structure for your child.

According to iTunes, the Learn to Talk app was “designed and tested by a nationally certified speech pathologist with over 30 years of experience working with speech and language development” and features over 160 colorful, interactive flashcards. Each flashcard pronounces the word pictured, encouraging your child to listen to and repeat the word. This approach is designed as children’s speech therapy for both typically developing toddlers and for toddlers with specific language impairments.

The first lesson your child experiences with the flashcards focuses on high impact words, giving your toddler experience with exclamations and comfort words that are immediately useful for basic communication. Building on this foundation, the second lesson expands this vocabulary to include over 50 labels by which to identify different nouns. The third progression acquaints your child with several verbs in the same manner, and the fourth explores multiple meanings and intonations of individual words. By the fifth lesson, your toddler develops the ability to combine and articulate 2-3 word sentences. This comprehensive approach guides your child through speech development from the first words to a basic grasp of the syntax of language.

Once your child grasps the ability to form these small sentences, the flashcards can be set to shuffle and the sounds turned off so your child can work with developing language skills from a visual prompt and create their own speech.

The Learn to Talk app is simple to use and is intended to be operated independently by your child himself. A simple swipe of the finger will flip from one flashcard to the next and tapping the screen repeats the word again for your child. The bright and colorful pictures illustrate the actions and objects, reinforcing the meaning of the words.

Speech therapists for children also recommend this app for toddlers who are learning to talk in a two-language household, as well as language delays associated with multiple language acquisition. The app is also encouraged by children’s speech pathologists for children with more severe developmental issues, such as receptive or expressive language delays or Autism spectrum disorders.

The most recent version of the app encourages interaction with letters and their specific sounds by spelling the words as well as speaking them. When your child taps the word associated with the picture, each letter is spelled out with a specific color. Additionally, the child may tap on the first letter of the word (pictured in the top corner, along with the full word at the bottom) to hear it pronounced.

Learn to Talk innovates digital flashcards for children by applying speech therapy techniques to develop a greater understanding of language in general, as well as build your child’s vocabulary and progress their speech development.