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15 Best Autism Apps for Kids & Parents

Apps can be used by parents and teachers as a tool to help autistic children improve social development, encourage the generalization of skills, provide structure and consistency, and assist with communication and self-regulation. There are a lot of choices out there, so after much testing, I put together a list of the best autism apps.

List of The Best Apps for Children with Autism and their Parents

I’ve put together this list of what I consider to be the best autism apps to help both children and their parents.

These apps all help autistic children because they either enhance learning or help parents simplify daily living, reducing common challenges.

Disclaimer: this post contains affiliate links.

Best Autism Apps – For Children

1. Autism Language and Cognitive Therapy With MITA

There’s a reason this app is number one on the list. This is an app that I’ve used personally for years. MITA stands for Mental Imagery Therapy for Autism. It’s an evidence-based early intervention technique.

About the app:

This autism app has an unlimited number of interactive puzzles designed to help children with autism develop language and listening skills. Children follow verbal prompts to complete puzzles of increasing difficulty. This technique is also used in speech therapy and Pivotal Response Training.

The app uses an adaptive algorithm to adjust the difficulty of activities based on your child’s skill level and performance.

Cost:

The app is free for children to use, and it’s ad-free. However, to access the parent dashboard where you can track your child’s progress with some useful visuals, you need to purchase the premium version, which is $15.99/year.

Get the app:

iOS: Visit the app store
Android: Visit Google Play

App for Autism - Mita

2. Card Talk

This is a must-have app for anyone with autism that uses PECS to enhance communication. It was developed by special educators in Japan who teach classes to children with developmental disabilities that focus on developing new language while also learning innovative IT skills like computer programming, coding, creating robots, etc.

About the app

It contains 200 general PECS card visuals, which are the same ones used in Japanese classrooms. You can also create your own cards and record your own custom verbal prompts to go with each of them. It can be used in several different languages.

Cost:

With the free version you can use the 200 PECS visuals that come with the app, and you can make 200 custom PECs cards for free. If you require more than the 400 cards you can purchase the premium version for $4.39.

Get the app:

iOS: Visit the app store
Android: Visit Google Play

autism apps - Card Talk

3. CodeSpark Academy

There are tons of “learn to code” apps out there, it can be hard to determine which coding app is the best. I chose CodeSpark Academy for the list of best autism apps because the games are only visual which means you don’t need to know how to read or have language skills in order to play.

About the app

This app teaches kids basic computer programming and coding skills using only visual activities. Kids can even build their own games within the app using the coding skills they’ve learned.

Cost:

The cost of using CodeSpark is $7.99 per month. However, they do offer a 7-day free trial so you can decide if it’s the right app for your child. There are no obligations though so you can cancel whenever you want.

Get the app:

Click here to sign up for the 7 day free trial.

autism apps = codespark

4. Kloog 2 – Social Skills for Autism

This is one of the best autism apps for older children/preteens with autism to help them learn some basic social skills needed for making friends and to increase social awareness.

The games are engaging but require a bit of reading before it’s “mission”. Parents may need to play with their children and help them with the reading.

About the app

This app was developed by the Shine Center for Autism. It follows the journey of an alien named Kloog who has to work through various challenging social situations on different planets.

Cost:

Free!

Get the app:

iOS: Visit the app store
Android: Visit Google Play

App for autism - Kloog 2

5. Epic! Kids’ Books and Learning Videos

A lot of parents have concerns about what their children see or read online and are moving away from video apps like YouTube because of the possibility of dangerous user-uploaded content.

That’s something you don’t have to worry about at all with Epic! because all the videos are educational and there is no user-uploaded content on the app at all.

About the app

This app has over 35000 children’s books, audiobooks, and educational videos. Plus, more content is added regularly. There are books for all reading levels and interests and the child’s “dashboard” can be customized to show recommendations for them. There are tons of classic, well-known books and popular series that your child probably already reads. 

Cost:

This app comes with a 30-day free trial and then costs $7.99/month.

Get the app:

Sign up for the free 30 days here.

Apps for autism - Epic

6. Sesame Street and Autism

This autism app is great for parents, children with autism and their siblings to help increase awareness and understanding. There are lots of tips within the app for explaining autism to young children.

About the app

This app includes articles with tips for parents, videos for children featuring the Sesame Street characters, stories for children, and interactive routine cards.

Cost:

Free!

Get the app:

iOS: Visit the app store
Android: Visit Google Play

apps for autism - sesame street

7. Khan Academy Kids

Khan Academy is the ultimate free study tool for people of all ages and abilities, from kindergarten to people working on their master’s degree. They are partnered with NASA, The Museum of Modern Art, The California Academy of Sciences, and MIT to offer specialized content.

Now they have Khan Academy Kids. Kids can learn reading, language, writing, math, social-emotional development, problem-solving skills, and motor development. Plus, open-ended activities like drawing, storytelling, and coloring encourage creativity and self-expression.

About the app

This app contains thousands of games, activities, and books designed to help children ages 2-6 learn. The activities are all highly interactive and children will be guided through lessons by adorable cartoon animals.

Cost:

Khan Academy Kids is completely free!

Get the app:

iOS: Visit the app store
Android: Visit Google Play

8. Breath, Think, Do, With Sesame Street

This app is all about teaching kids how to calm down and problem solve. Since self-regulation can be a huge challenge for children with autism, this app can help you teach new self-regulation strategies.

About the app

Kids help monster problem-solve through everyday conflicts and then execute a plan. They also learn about using deep breathing to help them calm down and think clearly when they’re upset.

Parents can customize encouraging phrases that kids will hear while playing. This is a great feature because children with autism should be taught skills using consistent language in all environments, so you can set up the same phrases you use at home and school.

Cost:

This app is free!

Get the app:

iOS: Visit the app store
Android: Visit Google Play

9. Avokiddo Emotions

This app is great for teaching children with autism about emotions, and how to identify them. I

t’s all based on free play so there are no rules to follow. It gives children the freedom to experiment with the different props and see what type of emotional reactions it elicits from the characters. This teaches children to make connections between actions and feelings.

About the app

Kids can dress up animals with over 110 different props, clothing items, food, etc to elicit dozens of emotions expressed through sounds, facial expressions, and body language.

This teaches children fundamental social skills and helps develop empathy by showing children how different actions can provoke various emotional responses. Plus, your child will definitely laugh at these hilarious animals.

Cost:

The app costs $4.99, however it is a one-time purchase. Once you’ve purchased the app there are no ads and no other in-app purchases. Everything is unlocked.

Get the app:

iOS: Visit the app store
Android: Visit Google Play

Apps for Autism - Avokiddo - Teaches Emotions and Empathy

10. Speech Essentials

Developed by speech-language pathologists, this app is a great way for parents to enhance their child’s SLP therapy at home through play. The activities are designed to help children with articulation and speech delays. This app was specifically designed to help children with autism.

About the app:

This app contains various games for speech development including a mirror function to help children visuals and copy lip and tongue placement, flashcard games, word searches, matching games, and more.

Cost:

When you download the app, you’ll be able to access the resources for the letter “B”. Then you can purchase different consonant sounds one at a time for $1.99 each. This way you don’t need to purchase any features that your child doesn’t need or that they aren’t ready to learn just yet.

Get the App:

iOS: Currently this app is not available on iOS devices
Android: Visit Google Play

Best Autism Apps – For Parents

As a parent, you probably have a lot on your plate. It can be challenging to stay organized, manage time efficiently, prepare for appointments, therapy, and have time for yourself to relax.

These are my top autism apps for parents to use. These are apps I use myself to simply make life easier.

1. Cozi

This is a must-have app when it comes to time management, and staying o top of all your family commitments, whether that be therapies, extracurriculars, appointments, or just coordinating daily with your spouse.

About the app

Cozi is an award-winning shared family calendar. Basically, you can color-code each member of the family and then create their schedule and that calendar can be shared with your spouse or anyone else. It makes it easy to see what the whole family is doing in a glance. Plus you can set reminders so you don’t miss anything important.

Cozi also has a shared grocery list that everyone with the app can add to. Plus, there’s a shared to-do list and a chore list.  And also a ton of recipes added by other users.

The last feature of Cozi is the shared family journal. This is what makes it one of the best apps for autism parents. When your child does something new, accomplishes something difficult, learns a new word, etc. you can record it in the family journal and it lets your family share that memory together and look back on those special moments whenever they want.

Cost:

All of the features mentioned above are available on the free version of the app, but there are ads. If you want to go ad-free, the cost is $29.99 per year.

Get the app:

Download Cozi and create your account here

2. Qustodio

Qustodio is a parental control and monitoring app that allows you to monitor and manage basically every aspect of your child’s technology use. Having a high-quality parental control app is essential for autism parents to ensure their safety online and on social media.

Autistic children may be more vulnerable online because they tend to have more difficulty understanding the intentions of others and telling when someone is lying.

This makes them more susceptible to being taken advantage of. Plus another important reason for a parental control app, for all parents, is to help ensure your child doesn’t fall victim to cyberbullying.

About the app

Qustodio lets you set limits on your child’s screen time, the apps they can use, the times of day they can access their devices, and their use of social media.

You can log into the parent dashboard at any time to make adjustments to your child’s limits and to see what they’ve been up to, websites they’ve visited, apps they’ve played, etc. It also emails parents a daily report for their child.

It’s available on all types of devices like Windows, iOS, Android and Kindle devices. However, there are a few extra features available for Android specifically, such as call monitoring, call blocking, and a panic button.

Cost:

There are several different plans available, depending on the number of child devices you need to put Qustodio on. The small plan allows you to monitor three devices and is $39.95/year. If you have more children or more devices to monitor, there is also a medium plan and a large plan.

Get the app:

Register for a free trial of Qustodio here.

3. Wildflowers Mindfulness

There are times, as a parent, where you must maintain your composure through extremely stressful situations. Especially when you’re faced with meltdowns and outbursts. It’s important to have tools that help you cope and stay calm in a healthy way because your actions have a huge impact on your child.

After learning about mindfulness from a cognitive behavior therapist in 2016, I tried to many different mindfulness apps because I find it difficult to engage in mindfulness without a guide and this app is by far the best one I’ve tried.

When I’m feeling overwhelmed by the daily challenges of parenting, stepping away and doing a 3-minute meditation allows me to feel calm and collected again.

About the app

The Wildflowers app contains themed guided meditations to help you practice mindfulness each day. The lengths vary from a quick 3-minute meditation to longer activities that are 20+ minutes to complete.

There are different meditations available depending on your mood and you can enter your emotions to get suggestions.

But the thing that makes this app really stand out from others in this category is the “snapshot” it takes before and after each meditation. This allows you to actually visualize the results of the meditation.

This app is even recommended by the Canadian Counseling and Psychotherapy Association.

Cost:

The free version allows you to complete the mindfulness lessons and the guided meditations. However, if you want to be able to look back at your progress in the journal you will need the premium version. You can register for a 14-day free trial and then it costs $7.99/month.

Get the app:

iOS: Visit the app store
Android: Visit Google Play

4. Thumsters

Thumsters is a simple and fun app for tracking your child’s behavior and allowing them to work towards incentives for good behavior. It’s highly customizable and allows you to give your child reinforcers in real-time, which is the way traditional ABA token charts work.

About the app

In the app, you will set up profiles for each of your children, and create their desired behaviors and inappropriate behaviors. Each time your child does what is expected, or what isn’t expected, you give them a thumbs up or a thumbs down.

You can set up rewards for your child and indicate the number of thumbs up required to achieve each reward.

The number of behaviors and rewards is customizable so you can target one behavior that’s particularly challenging, or you can use this as a more generalized good behavior system.

Cost

This app is free. There is a premium version if you want to have access to advanced analytics on your child’s behavior or share the app on multiple devices. However, all the basic and important features are free.

Get the app

iOS: Visit the app store
Android: Visit Google Play

5. Angelsense Guardian

Note: This app requires your child to have an Angelsense Guardian wearable device. Visit the Angelsense website.

If you have a child with autism who’s a flight risk, this app is essential.

About the app

When paired with the wearable device, this app allows you to monitor your child’s whereabouts in real-time. It will notify you of any unknown locations even if you aren’t in the app. It also has an indoor search feature so you can track down your child inside a building, like a mall, if they runoff.

This is a must-have if your child is a flight risk.

You can also listen-in to hear, in real-time, what’s happening in your child’s surroundings. Or, you can use the 2-way talk feature to speak to your child without them being required to answer a phone.

Cost:

The app is free. However, you need to buy the wearable device in order to use the app’s features.

Get the app:

iOS: Visit the app store
Android: Visit Google Play


Parents, are there any autism apps that you depend on that aren’t on this list? Let me know in the comments so I can check them out!

The Best Autism Apps for Children and Their Parents // #AppsForKids #LearningApps #LearningActivities #ChildhoodDevelopment #ADHDKids #Autism #HighFunctioningAutism #ToddlerDevelopment

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1 Comment

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