Following the success of our partnership with Special Education providers in schools and post-16 education we have now completed three additional workshops that explored craft materials and digital co-production. The overarching aim of the Making the Future more Crafty workshops was to use everyday materials and low-cost processors to enable teachers and pupils – particularly learners with profound disabilities who do not fit a set of definable user characteristics – to experience new opportunities for digital creativity. The workshops were led by Helen Leigh, a maker, educator and writer who specialises in creative uses of new technologies. Helen’s first book, The Crafty Kids Guide to DIY Electronics provided a lot of inspiration for the activities, which participants agreed were accessible, fun, and easy to adapt for the classroom, adding that learners who would normally only be given technologies to use could be included in design and making. The workshops were funded through the Strategic Insight Placement.
With funding from FabCre8, Members of the Enchanting Technologies network from special schools around South Wales gathered at FabLab Cardiff to create scenarios based on a series of technology probes. The ideas for the probes came from Digital Imagining Lab 1, held at Ysgol yr Deri. The probes were created by our technology/computer science/arts team: Parisa Eslambolchilar, Aiden Taylor, Jon Piggot, Patricia Puertas and MFA student, Sam Kitcher using Teensy, Arduino and Touch Board as low cost platforms for exploring prototyping, digital fabrication and co-production. By the end of the day we amassed a wealth of low-fidelity mock-ups, stories and sketches that demonstrate our shared vision for making enchantment the route to learning and self expression for pupils with profound disabilities.
Great to be back at Ysgol y Deri collaborating with teaching practitioners from across the autism and PMLD sector in Wales. With a focus on Enchantment and the new Expressive Arts curriculum, our first “digital imagining” workshop with FabCre8 considered whether co-production could be a viable and feasible method of addressing the digital marginalisation of pupils with profound disabilities.
CARIAD researchers and research students are advised to use the protocol to support applications for ethics approval where the research activity is conducted under the same circumstances, with similar kinds of participants, where the data is not “sensitive”, and where the participants are not members of vulnerable populations.
Wendy presented two papers at the inaugural Movementis Conference at the Oxford University Examination Rooms in July. The first, “Somability: movement, independence and social engagement for adults with complex needs” reported on the design process and results of Somability, an interactive arts project that aimed to make movement irresistible. The second paper, co-authored with Lise Hansen, “Dancing in data: Representation, repetition and recreation” described our most recent work that examines the potential of computer vision and machine learning to generate novel person-centred, choreographic techniques for processing kinesthetic sensory stimuli. Although the conference had a scientific bias, both papers received positive feedback from those who appreciated the need for a “human” approach to movement research.
CARIAD’s LAUGH project recently presented the findings from their second workshop at the Design & Emotion conference in Amsterdam. Here is a link to the paper – ‘LAUGH: Designing to enhance positive emotion for people living with dementia.’
Members of the CARIAD team supported the Alzheimer’s Society at The Vale of Glamorgan show, by running Hand i Pocket sessions. Visitors to the show were invited to stitch sensory textile pockets for people living with advanced dementia and the Alzheimer’s Society were on hand to offer advice and support.
Prof Cathy Treadaway’s work has been featured by Deborah Shouse on her blog ‘Dementia Journey’.
Read the full article here: ‘The Inside Story of Designing for Dementia’
The LAUGH team recently attended the DRS2016: Design Research Society 50th Anniversary Conference in Brighton to present the paper ‘In the moment: designing for late stage dementia’.
The full paper can be found here.
CARIAD threw open its doors this month to share its pioneering design research. The LAUGH project team, based in CARIAD, are working with health professionals and the care sector to develop playful objects to be used in the care of people with late stage dementia.
The LAUGH design Challenge took place in PDR at Cardiff Metropolitan University’s Llandaff Campus, and invited the public with an interest in design and technology to get involved as part of the showcase Wales Festival of Innovation, a national programme of events to celebrate ground-breaking activity in Wales.
The LAUGH team, which includes researchers from universities in the UK and Australia, gave participants the opportunity to use their expertise to help develop new products to stimulate laughter and fun for people living with advanced dementia.
This was one of dozens of participants in the Festival, which is organised jointly by the ESTnet (the technology network for Wales), the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) and MediWales with the support of Welsh Government and industry partners.