Back to School for Therapists: Managing Paper Schedules – Tips and Tricks

Back to School Tips and Tricks –  Managing Paper Schedules

Paper overload 2

It’s back to school time for students as well as teachers and specialists. As I think about those days and what it takes to get the school year and schedules started, I am reminded of teacher schedules, specialist schedules, building schedules, gym schedules early release day schedules – all needed to create your own  OT or teacher schedule! It can be a maze of schedules which you are dependent on to craft your own.

Here are just a few suggestions for mobile device users that can help simplify the paper schedule chase at the beginning or during the school year:

1. Digitize it! -

iPhone taking picture

a. Collect those hard copy teacher, building or related studies schedules on your mobile device by taking a picture with your iPad or Android mobile device. The pictures will be stored in your Photo Album (iPad) or Gallery (Android) for easy access and organization.

b. If it already is digital, have the electronic schedule sent to you.  If it is posted out  in cyberspace somewhere, navigate to that site and take a screen shot – (that handy trick every OT or teacher should know how to do):

iOS image iOS -Press Home +  Power Button simultaneously (you will hear a snap shot taken) – a picture of the screen will be sent to your Photo Library.

Android image Android devices (most of them, some differ a bit) Press Power + Down Volume Button (you will hear a snap shot taken)

2. Where did the photos or screen shots go?

iOS Photo library iconiOS photos and screenshots go to your Photo Library.

Android Gallery iconAndroid Screenshots go to your Gallery.

3. Organize them! Create an Photo Album of just schedules for easy access in one place on your iPad. Here’s how:

iOS image iOS –  Go to Photo Library  > Albums > “+” creates a new Album call it “Schedules” > Save > Add/Select photos to “Schedules” > Done). All those schedules will be store in one location to refer to when you need to craft yours.

iOS photo album schedule example

Android image Android – Screenshots images on my Dell Venue (Jelly Bean OS) are collected in the (photo) Gallery and automatically organized in a Screenshot folder (bonus!).  If you do a lot of screen shots and need further organization of them there is another way to organize photos by tags using Picasa but is a bit more complicated.

Android Gallery screen shots

Now you have all of those schedules view-able on your device, on demand and organized. Once they are organized you will be able to find them with a few taps on your device and you are ready to create your own schedule!

More for your teaching or OT mTool Kit!


Posted in Android, Android Management, iOS, iPad, iPhone, Occupational Therapy, Organization, Photo | Leave a comment

Six Apps Every OTA Student Should Have

Six Apps Every OTA Student Should Have

As scooped from:

Here is a back to school resource for OTA students from St. Catherine’s University in Virgina. The OTA Blogger shares “Six Apps Every OTA Student Should Have“, providing apps on assessment, intervention, study aids and equipment resources.

If you are an OTA student, are these in your OT mTool Kit?

Check them out!

As Scooped from Scoop.itOT mTool Kit


Posted in Continuing Education, iOS, Occupational Therapy | Leave a comment

App Gone Free – Spiffy Photo Editor

Spiffy Photo Editor icon

Spiffy Photo Editor App

Spiffy Photo Editor iconSpiffy Photo Editor app (iPhone/iPad; .99), a photo editing app is currently free. Although not a huge savings, if you are in need of an app to do some photo editing if creating or modifying a book or story for a student, developing a quick social or sensory story, or pictures of the sequence of a task. Having a photo editing app makes the process a lot faster.  This app is very easy to use for quick photo editing such as:

  • Cropping
  • Frames
  • Add text
  • Rotate
  • Adjust the contrast
  • Backgrounds and photo effects….

Photos can be take from within the app or existing photos accessed from your Photo Album.








Spiffy Photo Editor app does not have a draw function or stamps tools, but it will allow you to crop it, rotate the picture (ever take pictures that came out sideways, grr…) type text, size and color it and move the text where you. Different fonts and colors for the text are available. Once your photo has been edited a new copy of the edited photo is created from the original photo. A photo can be taken directly within the app or an existing

Spiffy Photo Editor was developed for iPhone so you you can view it 1x or 2x which will fill the iPad screen. It does require iOS 7.0 which should be available to iPad2, 3, 4, and Air. No in-app purchases!

Fotor app picAnother free photo editing option is Fotor app, (iPhone, iPad;  in-app purchases). Fotor app has a few more bells and whistles such as stamps, creating collages, scenes and effects as well as offer basic editing (add text, rotate, some frames and stamps) without additional purchases.

Fotor app pic1

Although not a difficult to use, Fotor app it does have a few more tools to manage and navigate in my opinion. Photos can be taken from within the app or existing photos accessed from your Photo Album. Fotor app is also available for Android.

So if you are doing some app-smashing (using apps to create and use for another app)  for photo editing for storytelling apps, sensory apps, book creating or developing activities for your  students or projects, both apps are free (currently) and easy to use.

More for your teaching or OT mTool Kit.


Posted in Android, App Reviews, Apps for OT's, iPad, iPhone, iPod, Occupational Therapy, Photo, Photo Editing, Utility | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dexteria Dots 2 – Fine Motor Skills and Math Concepts

Dexteria Dots icon2

Dexteria Dots 2

Dexteria Dots 2 App Review from Teachers with Apps

(As Scooped from: Dexteria Dots 2 – Fine Motor Skills and Math Concepts )

Binary Labs is known for quality educational apps, and Dexteria Dots 2 readily joins the ranks with exceptional content for kids, and it is also a blast!

Jo Booth, OT provides an extensive review on Teachers with Apps of Binary Lab’s new Dexteria Dots 2  app. I’m excited to use and share this app with participants at the OT’s with Apps Workshop next week. Thank you to Binary Lab’s generousity with promo codes for all of the participants!

Is this in your OT mTool Kit?


See on Scoop.itOT mTool Kit

Posted in Apps for OT's, Early Childhood, Fine Motor Development, Finger Isolation, iPad, Math, Visual Motor | Leave a comment

Tablift Stand for Tablets (iPads, Nexus, Dell Venue 8 and more) – Very Cool!

Tablift stand image

Tablift Stand

The folks at nbryte generously provided me with a brand spanking new Tablift Stand . Working with a wide variety of clients requires solutions for many different environments. Stands for students tend to be table or desk surfaces whereby stands for adults may require desk or alternative positioning, such as beds, couches or recliners. Finding flexible solutions is always important.  The Tablift is a flexible, multi-positioning device for uneven surfaces for all tablets.

The Tablift Stand has flexible (gooseneck – like) legs for ease of positioning, storing and toting around. Although it has substance (weighs 1-2 pounds), it packs up pretty small offering portability, or small storage space if needed.

Tablift foldedThe stand features three positions suited to sitting, reclining or lying down. An elastic band with a clip fastens a tablet securely on the device.

Tablift positions image

Removal of the devices’ case is required for a secure fit in the stand.  It advertises as a stand for all tablets. I certainly could not trial all tablets but did use it with  several iPads (2,3, Air), Nexus and Dell Venue 8 tablets all which fit securely in the stand. You can reduce  the length of the strap that secures the devices by wrapping through the middle of the stand, a really easy and straight forward solution for different sized tablets.

tablift stand top

The Tablift Stand is a well engineered stand that affords stability and flexibility for positioning on uneven surfaces as well as viewing for the user. The middle opening also allows availability to charge the device while used.

I had some assistance with trial of the stand and was able to observe the position and manipulation with its use. Positioning a device when in a reclined position can require reaching against gravity for operation, depending on the height and placement. This can be a challenge for clients with weakness or pain or just fatiguing for a typical user.  Although the user in the picture below does not have motor challenges, it was interesting to observe how the stand legs became a stable resting surface to his arms and hands and how easily a thumb or finger could be positioned to scroll or tap on the touch screen for device navigation.  The height and configuration of the stand allowed upper arms to remain supported with hands free for manipulation. Viewing position was comfortable, providing appropriate viewing angle when reclined –  especially for us those of us wearing bifocals who experience aging-in-place changes like presbyopia!


The Tablift Stand sells for 59.95 at or Amazon ( temporarily out of stock at Amazon but available at . Well engineered and adaptable, the stand provides ergonomic positioning options for individuals with disabilities as well as the general public.

Colleagues at Adaptive Technology Resources also trialed the stand with good reviews of its potential for adult clients needing alternative positioning with tablets. As for students use – I’ll find out what other OT’s think about the Tablift Stand at our August apps workshop next week!

What about the general public? Well, I know one user that quickly saw the benefits of the stand. All it took was seeing the stand, one trial and I believe I lost my stand and the couch! This is stand has great universal design features that can be used my many!!

Here is a quick video featuring the Tablift Stand:

Have you tried the new Tablift Stand? If you have, share what you think!


Posted in Accessories, Android Management, Assistive Technology, Ergonomics, iPad, iPad Management, Rehabilitation | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

OT’s with Apps for School Based Therapist- August 11 & 12

OT's with Apps Promo image

What’s in your OT mTool Kit? 

Interested in functional ways to use your iPad as a tool in OT?

  • Manage your iPad and student iPad for safety and focused use?
  • Review apps for school based occupational performance using feature matching (handouts)?
  • Explore apps and methods of performing documentation, organization and other administrative tasks on your device?
  • Accessorize your  iPad – hands on exploration of equipment for scanning stands, stands, cases, styluses, keyboards and more.

The OT’s with Apps for School Based OT have a few seats available for the August 11 & 12 workshop. Join us to learn and share in this 2-day workshop!

Bonus! Participants in past workshops have received more than $50.00 worth of free app codes and accessories from generous developers! Promo codes for popular OT apps will be provided for participants in the August 11 & 12 workshop.

iPad workshop 8-2014 promo apps

Click here for more information on the workshop or registration information:

OT’s with Apps August 11 & 12 Workshop 

Hope to see you there!

Carol & Erin

Posted in Apps for OT's, Apps for Special Needs, Assistive Technology, Continuing Education, iPad, iPad Management, Occupational Therapy | Leave a comment

CyberChase Shape Quest App – A PBS Kids VR Perceptual Motor App

Shape Quest icon

CyberChase Shape Quest free app developed by PBS Kids app for iPad and Android tablets providing a virtual reality games for ages 6-9. The app provides three games using geometry and spatial reasoning improve their problem solving skills. It is highly interactive,  requiring bilateral and motor planning skills to perform the tasks required of the games.

Three games are provided: Patch the Path, Hide and Seek and Feed the Critters requiring a printed sheet used to aim your tablet at for the virtual play.

shape quest pic5

Shape Quest board horizontal

Link to the PBS website document for printing is provided at the start of the app. Instruction on use of the printed sheet is given to get the hang of the app controls.

Shape quest pic4

Now you are ready to play Patch the Path, the virtual reality game.  Use controls on either side of the app to pick up, rotate and move objects on the screen. Verbal directions are given to you during the quest. I also did some adjusting of my device that also aided matching placement. The game starts at a simpler level and progresses through 30 different levels in 5 different environments. The goal is to move to the next level and earn points in the process.  in difficulty as you accomplish tasks and earn points.

Shape quest pic2 shape quest pic3
Hide and Seek and Feed the Critters games require visual motor skills and are not virtual reality games. They are suited for older kids due to the higher spatial reasoning and vocabulary required to complete the tasks.

Shape Quest pic6







Shape quest pic7



If you have older kids who are motivate to participate in electronic spatial reasoning tasks or need to work on higher level spatial reasoning skills, Shape Quest is well worth downloading. Actually it was rather fun playing the virtual reality game. For free it is well worth the download and experiencing virtual reality gaming.

Interested in learning about more virtual reality games for kids? Join the  OT’s with Apps @ School Workshop August 11 & 12th.

More for your OT mTool Kit.


Posted in Apps for OT's, Elementary School, Free apps, iPad, Occupational Therapy, Visual Memory, Visual Perception | Leave a comment