Kidoodle: Pirate Scribblebeard’s Treasure with Oscar & Josephine
THIS is the best app ever! OK…maybe not the best for everything but it tackles issues that I have found difficult to address in my OT sessions over the years. One of my kids, Harry, refuses to draw anything but stick figures and lines that look like he’s blowing things up. Walt hates drawing because his visualization skills are poor and he can’t imagine or “see” anything unless it’s tangible and in front of his face. Mary has no interest in drawing because she can’t make the product look anything like what she sees in her head. All of these children have difficulty with symbolic play, social communication, and flexibility.
Along comes Pirates Oscar & Josephine who invite you to help them build a story by finishing the drawing of two pirates whose shoes, belts, and hats have already been drawn. In the next screen, you are asked to complete the drawing of the pirate ship, then food, flag, etc. Each screen provides a line or two of text with a child’s voice describing the task, along with the beginning of a drawing. Every time I use this app with children, their ability, comfort with, and interest in drawing noticeably increases. They show flexible thinking as they change the story each time or use it with another child, taking turns on alternating screens. The app is so much fun with some “Arghhs”, a few cannon balls, and some deep sea creatures thrown in. Oh, and the best part…every time a page is turned, movement is imposed on the drawing so kids actually see their drawings animated! I have been amazed that so many kids who have an aversion to drawing will use and thoroughly enjoy this activity. Hm…maybe it IS the best app ever!
by Jill Perry, MHA, MS, OTR/L