Jake's Journey with Apraxia

And the Friends We Met Along the Way

Disclaimer: VAST provided me with a free copy of this app to review. I was under no obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a giveaway.

In the quest to cure my child, I’ve read everything I can get my hands on. At some point over the past fifteen months I’ve learned that visual cues can help a child speak better. I have to admit, at first I was skeptical. What does one have to do with the other and how could seeing something versus just hearing it possibly help?

Now that I’ve got a little bit of apraxia experience under my belt, however, I’m a believer.  I’ve come to understand that visual cues are necessary to target and help build the brain pathways that help an apraxic child break through their speech struggles. Based on my own experience, Jake is not going to learn to speak as a neurotypical child would. He can’t hear sentences and mimic them or automatically recall a word from a flash cards.

Different techniques have to be used and I’m so glad SpeakinMotion introduced me to the following two apps:  VAST Autism 1-Core and VAST Songs 1-Intro. VAST is proving to be a new and effective speech therapy tool for us and I am so glad we got to try it out.

Here’s what the opening screen of the VAST Autism 1-Core app looks like …


The VAST Autism Series was designed to provide a sampling of the VAST therapy program for students with autism and motor speech programming disorders such as apraxia. (http://www.speakinmotion.com/)

And these are a few of the melodies that are on VAST Songs 1-Intro app …


This series was developed with the understanding that music stimulates several different areas of the brain. Many research studies have shown results that support improved speech production with music therapy. (http://www.speakinmotion.com/)

These apps work on words, phrases, sentences and songs by showing a close-up of a mouth perfectly pronouncing each sound. There is also a mirror option that displays the entire time that allows the child to look at his/her own mouth at any point.

When Jake first saw that mouth covering the iPad screen, he looked up and gave me a sweet and silly giggle, but then he instantly zeroed in on those lips and the words almost magically popped out. Now a month and a half later, he is still enjoying these apps. He has mastered the words and phrases and now he is working on the sentences and songs.

Here’s what I like about these two VAST apps:

  • Good for a variety of speech levels – basic to advanced.
  • Even if a child is more advanced, the “easy” syllables list is still a good review and a great confidence builder.
  • Organized well – once you master a list, you move onto to the next.
  • An attainable set of items in each list (10-12) so child doesn’t get bored or burned out.
  • Words, phrases, and sentences that every child has heard before and things that they need to be able to say. Examples include: mama, eat, ouch, baby, okay, come here, drink water, I need to use the bathroom.
  • Word said once slowly, with a pause afterward for the child to repeat. Then, word said with accurate prosody, with another pause for the child to repeat it a second time.
  • Words are written on screen so child also sees how the word(s) are spelled.

To learn more about the VAST Autism 1-Core app click here or for information about the VAST Songs 1-Intro app, click here. You can also visit the SpeakinMotion web site at http://www.speakinmotion.com/.


31 thoughts on “VAST App Review

  1. Candace says:

    I would love to win these! My son has autism and apraxia. =)

  2. Susan Schawinsky says:

    Looks like an app we could use!!!

  3. tstarmom says:

    Email entry – Danielle K.

  4. tstarmom says:

    Email entry – Jessica V.

  5. tstarmom says:

    Email entry – Steve G.

  6. Mom1plus3 says:

    My son also has apraxia. I love reading your blog and hearing your similar stories. Please enter me in the contest 🙂

  7. Susan says:

    Sounds like this could help my severely apraxic daughter.

  8. Brook says:

    This is a great review of VAST apps, I am a speech therapist and I use the Core 1 Vocabulary daily with my clients with Autism and Apraxia. I have seen some amazing progress! I use music a lot in therapy as well and I didn’t know that there was a song app associated with VAST and I would love to add that for my kids. Good luck to you and your son, you are the reason that he has come so far.

  9. Trish says:

    I’m an SLP working with 2 preschoolers on my caseload with CAS. Would love to have these apps!

  10. Lara M says:

    This would be wonderful for my son! A perfect third birthday present.

  11. TM says:

    I would really love to try the Vast songs app. It looks amazing.

  12. tstarmom says:

    Email entry – Tara from Savannah

  13. Karen says:

    This is something I would like to try with my little guy. Thanks for telling all about it.

  14. Allison says:

    I’d love to win this for my 3 year old who has dyspraxia of speech.

  15. tstarmom says:

    Email entry – jmr

  16. G's mom says:

    I would love to try this. The more variety the better. Thanks for sharing.

  17. Melissa Cassidy says:

    Thanks for the review! Sounds wonderful for my son. I love hearing about an app from another mom before buying it on my own. Finding your blog has been so helpful for me as we start our journey with apraxia. Thanks for sharing your story.

  18. Beth says:

    Love! Thanks for putting the video up there… It is so helpful to see it in action with your son in order to envision mine using it!

  19. tstarmom says:

    Email entry – Holly B.

  20. Sue says:

    As a teacher of 4 partly verbal students this looks wonderful and would be great to use individually or in game playing. The songs especially are great, as music is a link between different areas of the brain.

  21. Melissa Peters says:

    This looks like a very interesting and well put together app! I would love to try it with my son! Thank you for the opportunity to win.

  22. Bri Harris says:

    I purchased the VAST Autism 1-Core for my non-verbal child the first day I was very surprised that she either spoke or attempted to pronounce all the words in one sitting.

  23. Amanda Bebee says:

    I would love to work on this app with my little dude – thanks for the review!

  24. Manuela Jordan says:

    I would love to have these apps.My granddaughter has severe apraxia.

  25. Maureen says:

    I would love this for my son. He is about to turn 4 this month and has severe apraxia. This app would help us get started with our new ipad. Thank you.

  26. Lauren says:

    This looks like a great tool for my little guy with apraxia, plus he loves music so that might be a good motivator. Thanks for sharing on your blog it gives us hope as we struggle through this journey.

  27. tstarmom says:

    email entry – Debra

  28. tstarmom says:

    email entry – Maureen

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