Picture Exchange Communication: Grace App Review

grace app for iPad

App: Grace

Developer: Steven Troughton-Smith

Platform: iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch

Price: $24.99   Download Grace – Picture Exchange for Non-Verbal People

Category: AAC (Picture Exchange Communication – PECS)


Using Pictures to Communicate

Non-verbal people with autism depend greatly on pictures and visuals to help them communicate. Grace is a communication app by Steven Troughton-Smith that uses the PECS (Picture Exchange Communication) system without audio to help autistic individuals communicate.

Grace App is customizable and parents can add pictures of familiar places, people, and things for their children to use.


Picture Exchange Communication Without Audio Encourages Interaction

Grace app essentially takes the place of unwieldy picture boards.  By design, Grace intentionally does not include audio in order to encourage the user to not only use pictures but to also practice vocalizing words that the pictures represent.

Grace App is unique because it requires the user to “present” the visual sentence and interact with a listener who will model how the word or sentence is spoken and then will prompt the user’s attempted pronunciation of each word.

The Grace app can be used as a tool for speech therapists, parents, and teachers who want to teach kids to communicate their needs independently.


Grace App AAC

What’s Included in Grace Categories?

There are eight different categories:

  1. Sentence Makers
  2. Colors
  3. Shapes & Numbers
  4. My Body
  5. Food & Drink
  6. Things I Like
  7. Things I Need
  8. Places


Each category is tappable and includes more images.

For example, in the My Body category, you will find pictures of an arm, chest, chin, ear, etc.

The Food & Drink category includes pictures of hamburger, ice cream, noodles, and nuggets.


Grace App: My Body


Grace App My Body Category


Grace App: Sentence Makers + Food

The Sentence Makers category includes “I want…”, “Look!”, “Wait”, “I need help”, “NO”, “First”, “Next”, Then”, and “Sore”.

Children can tap the “I want…” then build a sentence with the categories, for example, the Food & Drink category. They first tap “I want…” then Food & Drink then food choices, such as, Juice and Yogurt, communicating “I want juice and yogurt.”


Grace App PECS

Customized Pictures

Users can even add their own pictures that are familiar to children they work with. If a child sees a familiar item, food, or places they like, they’ll relate it to the words used to communicate.

To add pictures:  Tap the  “+” at the top, right.

You can select pictures and insert them into the category displayed. Just make sure you’re in the correct category.


personalized picture exchange communication system ipad app


Grace app is one that can be used in therapy and at home to encourage communication through the use of pictures. Don’t worry about being stuck with only pre-loaded pictures, because with Grace app parents can build images customized for their kids!  Familiar photos will encourage kids to choose and present their needs to a “listener” who will model and encourage the child’s vocalization of their “want” or “need.”

Grace App should definitely be on your wish list!  It gives a whole new spin to Picture Exchange Communication.


Downloadable Guide to Using Grace App

To learn more about how to set up and use Grace app, I highly suggest that you download and read the Guide to Grace App.  You can download the developer’s well-illustrated Guide by clicking here:  Guide to Grace App


Want to Get This App?

Download Grace – Picture Exchange for Non-Verbal People



Would you like to win a promo code for Grace App?  We have One (1) code to give away to a lucky API reader!

Please enter using the widget below. We will email the winner at the end of the contest.  This giveaway is open to everyone, worldwide.  To claim the prize, winner must have a valid iTunes account. Good luck!


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9 Responses to Picture Exchange Communication: Grace App Review

  1. SAMANTHA BODDE on March 3, 2013 at 8:32 am

    NETFLIX is my childs fav app lol

  2. LisaMaree on March 3, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    Thank you so much Marnie and Jack for this thorough review. It makes me so happy when people “get” why I made Grace App, not just for my daughter Gracie, but for all the other pre-verbal communicators. Latest update can be switched to Spanish, French, Arabic, German, Danish or Brazilian Portuguese. (Languages chosen based on the emails I got) – I hope this can help more people around the world to get what they want.
    Bless you all. Lisa Dom (Gracie’s Mommy & CEO Grace App)

  3. Anonymous on March 3, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    first words is a favorite app for kids at my school!

  4. Carrie on March 5, 2013 at 9:18 pm

    5 little monkeys! (Regular, Christmas, and Halloween)

  5. anna on March 8, 2013 at 2:12 pm

    at the moment mine is mainly interested in thomas the tank engine apps so is a bit difficult to get him off those and onto something i want him to do, like for learning, but he really loves the thomas ones

  6. Walt Nickell on March 8, 2013 at 2:16 pm

    This looks like just the type of app we’ve been looking for. My son is 15 and completely non-verbal. I think this might provide the communication link we’ve been so hoping for.

  7. Denise on March 8, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    Thomas the Train is a favorite with my little guys. This app looks like something that could help us a lot!

  8. Dianne on March 9, 2013 at 7:32 am

    The kids I work with really like Letter School and Maze Adventures.

  9. […] teachers use the Picture Exchange Communication (PECs) where a schedule may be printed out and laminated for a classroom. This app allows mobility and […]

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Who’s Behind Autism Plugged In?

Who’s Behind Autism Plugged In?

My name is Jack Kieffer and I'm a blogger sharing my love of technology at blogs like Cool Gizmo Toys, Greenamajigger, and here at Autism Plugged In where I'm trying to make a difference in the lives of children with autism.

Several years ago, I began volunteering with special needs kids, who gave me much joy and an appreciation for life. This blog is my way of giving back. Any proceeds from this effort are used to support my friends with autism. Read more about Jack or connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn.