Friday, March 15, 2013

App Review: You're the Storyteller: The Surprise

You’re the Storyteller: The Surprise Pro HD

By Hamaguchi Apps for Speech, Language & Auditory Development

iTunes Description:
You’re the storyteller! In this beautifully animated, wordless story, the child watches each scene and can then record and/or write their very own narration! **THIS IS THE PRO VERSION. It holds up to 30 users' narrations and writing. For a single user, please check out our Home Version.

In this delightful story, a boy brings home a stray dog and attempts to hide it from his mother. Using body language, facial expressions, and carefully selected sound effects, watch the story unfold and find out why it is called “The Surprise!”

There are 8 chapters in this story. Each chapter’s animation clips runs an average of 15 seconds, allowing the child to describe and retell the story in small increments. The user may replay the entire narrated story from beginning to end via the Table of Contents. You can also watch the original story with or without music accompaniment, email your story including the voice file, or print it out!

There are “Challenge Words” provided for each chapter. These are optional and for more advanced language learners who want to try and put them into their narration. The “Questions” bone provides 3 questions for each chapter. Answers and suggestions for both of these are available in the Information page.

This is the Professional version. Up to 30 users’ voice files and written narration is kept in the program. When a new recording or writing is provided for that user, it erases whatever was previously recorded or written for that user. 

Aside from being just plain FUN, this app lends itself well to a host of educational and therapeutic possibilities: practice with articulation, fluency, syntax development, social cognitive skills including perspective-taking and body language/facial expression interpretation, and much more!

PRIVACY POLICY: We do NOT collect personal data from our users and have no ads. Personal data regarding user performance on the tasks on this app are self-contained and not transmitted in any way, unless the user chooses to email them to someone else. There are no in-app purchases in this app. A demo link will allow a user with internet access to view a video on YouTube to learn about the features of this app, as well as a link to our other apps in the iTunes store.

Developed by noted speech-language pathologist and author of Childhood Speech, Language & Listening Problems: What Every Parent Should Know, Patti Hamaguchi, M.A., CCC-SLP.
To find out more about this app and our other upcoming projects, visit our website:
This versatile app allows for so many speech and language goals to be addressed at once, including narrative development, formulating sentences, sequencing, pragmatic language skills, and vocabulary.  I have always enjoyed using wordless picture books, even with my older students, so when I saw this app, it was on my must-have list immediately.  In this app, you and your child (student) will watch the wonderfully animated scenes and then record a narration of them.  There are 8 different chapters or scenes.  I love the use of body language and facial expressions in the scenes.  My students have difficulty interpreting body language and facial expressions, so after each scene, we acted it out.  This helped them in taking on the perspective of the characters.  I had to tell my students that I wanted them to create a story to tell my children, in order to justify them using the app.  They really enjoyed it.  Each student narrated two scenes, and they liked hearing the whole story again once it was finished.  Also included in this app are challenge words you can use when narrating the story, and questions about each chapter.  There is also space on each page to type, so speech therapists have the option of addressing writing skills as well as verbal skills. 

I would definitely recommend this for use with younger and older kids.  It is highly engaging, and can even be used to obtain language samples.  


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