Speech Blubs: A Speech Therapy Tool for Kids on Mobile

Friday, May 24th, 2019 7:56 am

The app uses video modeling to help youngsters.

Research shared by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (part of the National Institutes of Health in the U.S.) says that, by first grade, “roughly 5 percent of children have noticeable speech disorders, including stuttering, speech sound disorders, and dysarthria.”

While speech-language pathologists can help individuals with various speech issues, a mobile app called Speech Blubs was designed to help kids from 1-8 years old from the comfort of their home. The app is available in English and Spanish versions.

Speech Blubs uses a “video modelling” format that can help kids improve their speech skills as they mimic the children they watch in videos.

When parents first download the Speech Blubs app, they’re encouraged to complete a questionnaire about their child’s “interests and milestones” so that the app can personalize their experience. At the end of the questionnaire, the app will present parents with a general report highlighting some of the potential issues the child may have based on their answers.

From there, the app will suggest a variety of activities for the child to complete. These activities are separated into different themes and types, such as Early Sounds (a section that asks kids to mimic animal or object noises), Puzzle Power (a section with multiple choice quiz questions), and Sing Along (a section with songs for kids to sing along with).

The app uses the device’s microphone to listen to the child’s voice as they complete activities. Parents can also turn off the microphone, allowing kids to watch the videos without being required to speak themselves. Finally, some activities activate the device’s camera, and allow kids to play around with face filters. Altogether, the app has more than 1,500 activities, face filters, and extra educational videos for kids to interact with. Kids earn stickers as they complete activities, so they’ll know which ones they’ve yet to try.

Speech Blubs is available as a free download on iOS and Android devices, but the service has a subscription price of $9.99 per month. Parents and kids can try the app’s services for free for seven days.

Disclosure: Speech Blubs gave SuperParent a one-month free trial of its services for coverage purposes.

Brandy Berthelson

Brandy Berthelson has been writing about video games and technology since 2006, with her work appearing on sites including AOL Games, Digital Spy, and Adweek. When she’s not gaming, Brandy enjoys crafting, baking, and traveling with her husband.

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