Even if it’s been a few years since you were standing outside your locker, Conversation Builder Teen makes you feel like you’re right back into the land of teen angst. High School can be difficult for teens with intact social skills. We know it can be so hard for our students who lack pragmatic language skills. Conversation Builder can be the newest tool in the SLP toolbox pragmatics. It can help your students practice conversational exchanges in a controlled environment, before they head out into the land of people with partially connected frontal lobes! Develop a profile by entering your student’s gender and name. Multiple profiles can be added into the game. Conversation Type indicates how you will play the game. Most instruction will happen with by the 2/3 player version. The other choice is in a group where the iPad will be passed around. Theme base modules are selected to determine the content of the conversations. There are 8 different available modules (clothes, bullying, summer, entertainment, sports, sarcasm, school, relationships). 300 conversations are included for practice. Parental controls allow SLP’s and parents to block students from certain topics such as smoking, alcohol and sex. The conversation stimulator requires students to initiate conversations, respond to conversations initiated by the Ipad or participate in group conversations. The students are guided through the conversation with possible answers. If they give an unexpected answer, helpful hints are given. They are given the chance to record their voice to add to the conversation. Clicking on the history button lets you look at what conversation has already taken place in the written form. When the conversation is complete, you can play back the conversation with the animated and student answers interlaced. Conversations can be saved as well as emailed. Each student has a progress page. You can see how many of the conversations have been completed as well as any saved conversations. Conversations are only marked completed when you answer each part of the conversation correctly the first time. The group setting allows to any conversation to be added. You add your students, image and do not use any outline for conversations. Save any set with at least 4 parts. Many of my students who used the original Conversation Builder, benefitted from a boost in confidence. While Conversation Builder can’t give them every skill needed, it can give them the confidence to attempt the social interactions they desperately want. The opportunity to practice reduces the anxiety some of my students feel in those situations. The themes in conversation builder are suited well for teenage relationships. It’s often hard for SLP’s and teachers to model the type of situations that take place in the high school hallways in an authentic way. I like that the answers aren’t always example of ‘good behavior,’ but rather typical teenage phrases. For example, in the sarcasm model, one of the items includes a group of girls telling a fake story to you about a popular girl. One of the correct answers is “Will you shut up!” The app uses expected teenage slang and sarcasm “Right – and I bet she robbed a bank last night too” to demonstrate real life communication exchanges. The bullying topics are appropriate and put the students in the actual situations. For example, in one conversation, someone says “How’s the most popular girl in school?” The student must detect sarcasm and decide how to react. So far, I haven’t seen another app on the market take on tough topics like Conversation Builder Teen. Smoking, stealing, online bullying, Facebook, self deprecating sarcasm, sitting in the cafeteria, defending others, pregnancy rumors, breakups, dating, parties, concerts, divorce, and texting are just a few of the conversation topics. Mobile Education Center provided with with a copy of this app. The opinions in this review are mine. Conversation Builder Teen is available on itunes for $19.99 this weekend only. Full price ($29.99) will take effect Monday 11/12/12 Enter to win one copy on the rafflecopter below! a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Cara Garcia says
I like to use All about Me cards from SuperDuper or the Pragmatics cards set. My students really love to draw the cards and ask questions. Another thing I like is Conversation Bingo–you can customize the questions to fit your students’ interests and make it into a game.
I do social skills groups with my middle school and high school students. We have used conversation builder before, Topic Talk cards from Super Duper, Social Scenes pictures from LinguiSystems and a lot of social stories and role playing. I would love to win this new app!
I love the original conversation builder with my younger kids, but sarcasm is such a big part of the older kids’ experience, and so hard for some of my older kids. We spend a lot of time talking about sarcasm and saying things genuinely vs. sarcastically.
I use Social Thinking and Super Duper products with my kiddos. I use a lot of social stories/scenes.
we do social skills groups with our social worker
I try to increase the students awareness of the social thinking concepts. I have them do journal entries at the beginning of each session to organize their thoughts and give them time to think about what went well and questions they may have. I keep in close contact w/ their teachers so the student can analyze situations that happened in school or during their internship.
Conversation Starters, Social Skills Groups, Social Stories
Social stories, video modeling, video clips
Just Speechie says
Video modeling, social stories, and apps.
Social stories, apps, Social Times Magazine articles
Social skills groups, Would you rather game (works on conversation, perspective taking, sportsmanship), conversation starters, Social Scenes from Linguisystems
I like to use picture books with my middle school students. Perfect ones for this time of year are Turk and Runt and the Spider and the Fly.
would really like to test this one out!
Rose Ann says
I like finding youtube videos (and an app from Americas Funniest Home Videos) that address various situations…I will often pause the video and ask my student “what do you think will happen next??” or “how should the person in the video react/respond in the situation”…it is definitely an attention grabber! Rose (www.speechsnacks.com)
video clips from TV shows (esp Big Bang Theory…) and then eventually video clips of themselves.
Social Thinking, social skills groups, social thinking graphic novels, role playing.
Conversation starters, some situation scenarios, would you rather, perspective taking
With my teens that need social skill help I follow the Zones of Regulation curriculum.
I use behavior maps from Social Thinking to work on social skills with my middle school students. They also really like to role-play.
Suzanne Hopf says
I like to brainstorm problem solving trees and then practice each “branch” in role play. I also like a cartoon app called “Middle School Confidential” for younger teens. By the way, your readers might like to know that there is another competition for this same app at http://www.smartappsforkids.com/2012/11/win-a-copy-of-the-brand-new-converstionbuilder-teen-just-released-today.html#more
Carrie Walls says
Role playing and watching portions of tv shows.
Devs Design4m says
Thanks for build the social media apps and your blog is awesome With your conversation builders. teens..