App Review: Rover
Welcome to the first post of what I hope will be an ever useful blog resource for those of you incorporating the iPad and technology into your therapy sessions. First a little bit about me, I have been working for non-profit school for special needs and outpatient clinic for the last five years and before that I worked in the schools. I have been incorporating iPad into therapy pretty much since its release. It's been an amazing time to be a speech-language pathologist and I look forward to watching the technology and apps evolve! So without further ado here is the first app of many that I hope you will add to your toolbox as it has been pretty useful.
Do you love using your iPad for therapy but miss some of those flash based websites with treasure troves of useful games and activities? Well Rover is a free app that solves that problem for us! Rover is an internet browser that streams flash based sites to your iPad. Rover is targeted towards enhancing the K-12 education experience. They even partnered with education websites like PBSkids.org. Rover is able to stream flash to your iPad because it's based on the iSwifter platform, which is the world's first cloud-based Flash streaming platform for mobile devices. Feedback from teachers and IT personnel was taken into account with Rover was designed.
Here are some of the key features that it offers:
- Content-filtering in the cloud ensures students are protected from inappropriate content
- No personal data about users is tracked or saved
- Firewall-friendly solution works with existing IT standards and systems in schools
- Easy-to-use and intuitive for teachers as well as students
Note: Rover requires a Wi-Fi connection and 3G iPads also require a wireless connection.
This is the "more content" page of Rover, as you can see it's broken down by grade level which is nice for those of you working with different grade levels as most of the work is already done for you. You are also able to make bookmarks like you would with any web browser so you can save your go to websites.
Here is an example of Rover accessing PBSkids.org . If you take a look at the top right corner of the screen you will see three options. These allow you to toggle between an D-Pad and Spacebar option, which will allow you to interact and play games. You are then able to bring a keyboard up as well full screen mode.
Here is another screenshot of a full little rhyming game that you are able to access through the Sesame Street section of PBSkids. You can tap the screen just like you would in an App. There are some basic gestures that are used to scroll up or down the pages, which is a two finger flick. The rest of the gestures can be found in the information section of the app.