Smarty Ears Applications recently released The Therapy Report Center (TRC). I am pleased to do a review on this great little app.
First, let me explain what it isn’t… it isn’t a game, it isn’t a therapy activity, and it isn’t an expensive therapy tool.
What it IS…(besides fabulous)…
is an incredible piece of software that integrates (or will soon) all of the Smarty Ears therapy applications REPORTS in one spot. Imagine…Being able to see all of your clients’ data in one spot and having progress reports nearly written for you.
Here’s how it works...
Once the app is downloaded, the user inputs the clients, in my case students, information. I click on the avatar I want to use, put in the students’ initials (or names), birth dates, and targeted skills (don’t worry – you can include your own so it’s not just the ones that have Smarty Ears apps for them). I will be honest, when I first started this task it seemed really daunting – and I nearly stopped. But it really wasn’t that bad. The only reason it seemed bad at all was because it was the first time so I had to input all my students (and to be completely honest, I did this while I was watching TV one night so it wasn’t totally awful!). Now, as I input each new student I enroll, it will be easy.
Here is what the screen looks like when you first start. There is the button on the left to “add student,” three tabs on the bottom to watch tutorial (I STRONGLY suggest you do this so you know what the app can and can’t do), see compatible apps, and use the app. There’s also a button for settings, search, and search for student. Eventually nearly all the Smarty Ears apps will be compatible.
One of the things I was concerned about was how to get existing data from my smarty ears apps into TRC. I mean, lets face it. I’ve been a smarty ears user for years. I started back when MAP (which isn’t available anymore) came out and was one of the first to use the Sunny Articulation Test. So I have a LOT of smarty ears apps and a LOT of data. I didn’t want to lose that unnecessarily. Thankfully…I didn’t have to worry too much.
Once I built my database (input my students), I had a choice. For the students who had never used a particular app, I could just hit “export student” select the app I wanted to have their information go to, and BOOM. It was there. Just. Like. That.
For the students that had already used the apps, I was able to go to the existing apps that were compatible. For this example, we’ll use Syntax City (which if you don’t have – you need to go get…trust me!).
In Syntax City, I selected the report section, clicked on my student and “players performance.” From there, I clicked on “Share.” In “Share” I was given the option of email, print, open in, and Open in TRC. I clicked on Open in TRC, which brought me to another small selection window with Therapy Center, Evernote, and Dropbox (if you don’t have evernote and dropbox you won’t have those options). Clicked on Therapy Center, it opened, and I was able to select the appropriate student. It didn’t matter if the names were the same – the avatars were the same – or anything. I controlled it all.
Once the student was selected, I was able to see all their data in one spot. When the data is from more than one app, it separates it nicely. Perhaps, best of all, the user can take a picture of their activity that is NOT on a smarty-ears app (crafts or other games), and incorporate THAT into the report by writing a new progress note.
The SLP can then “preview report” and it will give the name of the student, grade, date of birth, targeted skills. In the body of the report, it gives date of session, app used, and data. This tutorial that Barbara Fernades put together will definitely explain anything that I left out…
This app is amazing. It has the potential to be an incredible time saver for the busy SLP. I have been told the price will stay small (currently it’s $1.99) in order to ensure everyone can purchase it.
Things that hopefully will be changed?
So far, I’ve only found one and I’ve already emailed the developer about it. When you are importing students, if you happen to select the wrong student – there’s no way (that I found) to deselect them. That’s unfortunate, because then that data is put in the wrong student profile. If you’re vigilant (and don’t have fat fingers) it’s not an issue.
This app is definitely worth the price and the (slight) inconvenience of having to input students. Now that my database is built, I can add new students in just a few seconds and have their information available for every smarty ears app (and all the new ones will be TRC compatible!). Since I can put in “extra” progress notes, I can use it for (non Smarty Ears apps) and other activities. No more multiple files! The time it will save me when I write my progress reports is immense!
This is, hands down, one of the better case-management tools I’ve seen.
Have you tried TRC yet? That’s okay…Leave me a comment here with your favorite Smarty Ears app – and why it’s your favorite. I will draw one lucky winner on Saturday, January 19th and they will receive a copy of TRC provided from Smarty Ears.
Until then…Adventure on!