OT Review of iPad App Dexteria for Fine Motor Skills

I was approached by BinaryLabs, Inc to review Dexteria on the iPad (and two other apps to come soon). Dexteria works on fine motor skill development and there are three components to this particular app.

1st component: Finger sequencing and isolation:

Place your thumb on an anchor point (either hand), practice isolating your other fingers in a varying sequence that the iPad provides. I see this being a great tool for the right person! I work with children in lower grades of elementary school, so it tends to be slightly too challenging. They can keep the thumb anchor point but then can’t isolate the correct finger quickly enough before it moves on. You can see in the screen shot that my child is using any finger possible. By the time she takes the time to figure out the correct finger, the sequence has already moved on.

My suggestion: instead of the program having a sequence that happens at a timed interval (it moves on regardless if anything is pressed), consider having the option to have a sequence that only moves on once a button is pressed. That way my kid could spend time figuring out the correct finger, press it, and then move onto the next one. However, I am sure for older kids and adults it is awesome just as it is. 🙂

2nd component: Fine motor manipulation and control:

You have to pinch little crabs. This one is super cute if not slightly awkward, especially depending on how long your nails are! I like this one as well and it gets fast quick!  I saw Tonya of TherapyFunZone.com recently make her own version of iPad tongs. I wonder if they would work for this. http://therapyfunzone.com/blog/2012/09/ipad-chopsticks/


3rd component:  Practice letter formation. 

I was in an iPad class today and I had an OT remark that her children found this particular handwriting app very challenging. I was surprised by this. My little kids aren’t particularly fond of this one as it doesn’t have any bells and whistles to make it fun, but I haven’t seen them too frustrated by it. You can practice uppercase, lowercase, or numbers here, and it’s very straight forward. Not a lot of distractions. I think it would be great in cases where you don’t need any playfulness. You do need relatively good control as it dings you quick if you go outside of the lines.

A funny little note that I mentioned in a recent post: I’ve been using Dexteria with a little girl several weeks in a row and have used the name of the app with her without thinking about it. She came in the other day and said “Can we use Dexter?” My first thought was the serial killer, not the app. She then instantly swiped my iPad to the left to the search box and start typing in “D..e…x.. to find it. I was impressed with my little 2nd grader!

Have any of you guys tried Dexteria out? With who? What do you all think?

*I received a free copy of Dexteria (it’s less than five dollars) in exchange for providing a review on my blog. The review is unbiased as the opinions are solely my own.

Jan 17, 2013 | Category: Occupational Therapy | Comments: 1