How iPads are helping kids with special needs

September 22, 2011 1:51:12 PM PDT
Gary James just got back from an east coast trip where he gave away iPads to kids who won a contest on his company's Facebook page. In a few weeks the Oxford father of six will set off on a new mission: 50 iPads, loaded with apps, across 50 states for 50 children with special needs.

"I will personally drive around to every state and deliver them and video it so everyone can see it happening, and the changes it makes," James said.

James' six year old son Ben is on the autism spectrum. When Ben started playing with an iPad a year ago it changed the way he learned.

"Problem solving, things we didn't even know he could do - tracing letters, numbers, writing with a stylus on the iPad," James said.

James wants to get iPads into schools to teach these special kids the way they learn. He started his company A4CWSN, apps for children with special needs, in January. His website has already had a million hits.

"Parents, teachers, and others who realize just because these youngsters can't do things on paper doesn't mean they can't do things at all," James said.

James has reached out to Apple, the maker of the iPad, but they haven't responded. He hopes this new 50 iPads across 50 states campaign will make them and others pay attention and offer support.

"Anything that involves a delay in development in a child, these people are looking for ways to make that change and the iPad seems to be opening that corridor," James said.