iPad’s visual prompts help children with autism

As a general rule, children with autism fare better with visual stimulation than they do with auditory information — and that’s where tools such as the iPad can help, says Dr. Fred Volkmar, director of the Yale Child Study Center.

While other children may enjoy building with blocks, autistic children are often fascinated with letters and pictures on the sides of the blocks.

Devices such as the iPad provide visual stimulation with the added benefit of customization: Parents can make an iPad personal by putting in alarms or adding the child’s picture, notes Volkmar, author of “A Practical Guide to Autism: What Every Parent, Family Member and Teacher Needs to Know.”

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