Otsimo provides tools and resources for families or caregivers of children with special needs. The app provides games that allow children to engage in virtual special education targeted at improving motor and cognitive skills. Caregivers can develop a personalized curriculum through screening tests that suggest games tailored to fit each child’s unique needs. Caregivers also receive tips and resources along the way.
Compatibility: IOS and Android
Price: Free and paid versions available.
Target Audience: Otsimo was created for children and individuals who have autism spectrum disorder, Down syndrome, Asperger’s, ADHD, cerebral palsy, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, motor neuron disease, speech impediments and aphasia, as well as general motor and cognitive challenges.
Bottom Line: Otsimo uses fun, interactive, and educational games and tools to help children and individuals build confidence and improve their motor and cognitive skills.
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Features and Options
Otsimo provides fun and educational games for individuals with special needs. The games allow users to practice skills and develop understanding of vocabulary, numbers, emotions, colors, music, animals, and more.
The Otsimo app and its games were developed under the guidance of special education teachers, parents, and experts in the field using the evidence-based Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) therapy as a framework which is a useful form of treatment for children and individuals with learning disorders and attention deficit issues.
The app has two sections, one for family and another for the child. To setup the app, a caregiver completes the screening process in order to target the app toward their child’s particular needs. The Family section of the app, which is passcode protected, allows caregivers to set and track goals, view progress reports, and view a history of the games played and minutes spent in each game. The Family portion of Otsimo also includes a blog with articles about autism spectrum disorder and other developmental disorders, app reviews, special education online learning tips, and account information.
The Child section of Otsimo welcomes and encourages users with soothing music, a warm voice, and fun yet calming colors. It has a number of gaming choices such as counting, story time, matching, drawing and coloring, identifying sounds, and memory games, among others. As a child completes games, they receive positive encouragement through balloons that float up to the top of the screen which users can then “pop” by tapping them.
Users and caregivers can track learning together by progressing along the virtual learning path as they complete daily goals and game levels. Users and caregivers can also use the Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) tool to communicate with one another. AAC, which is often used in speech therapy and special education, allows users to select icons within the app that contain pictures, words, and audio in order to express their needs, thoughts, and emotions, helping to improve communication with those around them.
The free version of Otsimo provides access to several educational games, game history and basic progress tracking, and the AAC tools. The Premium version gives access to over 100 games, with two new games each month, personalized curriculum, in-depth progress reports, daily and weekly report cards, and cross-platform support for up to three devices.
Otismo is very practical as a learning and developmental resource for children and their families. Practitioners would be well served to be aware of the app’s potential as an option for their clients and recommend as an adjunct to their direct service work.