Question from Cheryl: What’s a Great iPad Application for Typing?

Cheryl writes:

Hello, my son Alex 12 years old has been doing rpm with stencils for two years with soma and me and teachers. It has been amazing, he has spelt out I am smart, and that he has two brains one happy brain and one sad. We are trying so hard to get him to a keyboard on iPad. He is using the app that is not very good. Not everyone knows how to do stencils any suggestions on apps for his iPad with keyboard? I feel he is so traped. With soma he gets out so much, with us words. We are all trained by soma but are trying so hard to get him on iPad so everyone can ask him things. Thanks for any help!


You are so right! Soma makes it look easy because she is such a master at understanding our children’s stims and how to substitute herself. It has taken us a long time to transition Elizabeth from the letterboard to her iPad. One big help came with the iPad app called iMean. It was written by the father of one of Soma’s students and it makes the iPad have the largest possible letterboard (either QWERTY or ABC) with a single line that shows what has been typed and voice output. And it only costs $4.99 at the iTunes store.

I hope this helps you and your son to continue to communicate. Remember what Soma says: the student’s success is most important. So, if you need to use the letterboard and only substitute the last letter of every word on the iPad, that is a good first step. First letters, then words, then sentences. It takes time but you will succeed if you persevere.

Blessings, Ginnie

  • grammi64

    Did you do any exploration of or work with Brain Balance with Dr. Robert Melillo?  If not, why not?  And if so, what was your opinion of this approach?  I am just getting started to help my grand-daughter and there is SO much to look at, take in and wonder about.  You and your daughter’s book is a lovely inspiration and so heartfelt.  God bless us all in this journey (as I kow He does!).  Thank you. 

    • ginniebreen

      Thank you for your kind words regarding Elizabeth’s book. I have looked into the Brain Balance program but not done it with our children. My belief is that we need to focus on both medical and educational issues for our children. They need to be WELL ENOUGH to be able to learn and they need to be taught ASSUMING INTELLIGENCE. We have worked with many wonderful doctors over the years and right now we are treating our children’s immune systems with antibiotics and IVIG. On the education side, we got the children mainstreamed as soon as possible so they would be academically challenged. This has not always been easy. I give a tremendous amount of credit to their educational aides. Perhaps these Brain Balance programs can help, especially with brain / sensory integration, but only, I believe, after the more fundamental medical issues are addressed and as a supplement to focusing on the main educational program being as challenging as possible for the child. Our website has medical and educational resources that may help you on your journey.

      I hope this helps your grand-daughter.

      Blessings, Ginnie