An App for Agrammatism
Agrammatism is a hallmark of non-fluent aphasia, resulting in telegraphic speech consisting mostly of nouns with a few verbs and adjectives strung together to create a sentence. It's the connector words in our language that make up most of the words used in fluent speech, and these are the words that often go missing when a person suffers a brain injury that results in aphasia. While the telegraphic utterance can be quite effective at relaying the message, the speaker sometimes feels it is not good enough, wanting to improve their speech to pre-stroke fluency and completeness.
When targeting agrammatism in therapy, there are several apps for children that focus on individual components of grammar: pronouns, conjunctions, verb tenses, and agreement. However, one app stands out as a great resource for adults who want to practice making complete sentences without childish accouterments. SentenceBuilder Teen by Mobile Education Store is available for iPad for $5.99, or you can add the Teen modules to the original SentenceBuilder app for children through in-app purchase.
SentenceBuilder Teen guides users through constructing sentences with 3 levels of difficulty and 100 photos. A rotating dial must be moved to line up the correct sentence elements to accurately describe the picture. The harder the difficulty, the more parts of the sentence and the more options there are. This Teen edition has pictures of teenagers doing everyday activities. You have the choice between the "Girl" and "Boy" packs for more relevant activities and interests for each gender, but both are appropriate for adults and can be used interchangeably.
I really appreciate how the stats are recorded by user and according to how many tries it took to get it right. That app is missing an option to export the stats in an email, as well as a guest user profile to avoid entering personal information. While the primary activity of the app is a non-verbal exercise, a skilled therapist can use this app to elicit a lot of verbal expression, oral reading, and expanded descriptions. For more advanced clients, I've covered over the words once we've chosen them and then asked the client to write the sentence from memory.
Which apps do you use for grammar and syntax with adult clients?