CARIAD had a very informative meeting with Anthony and Janet at Trinity fields School today. We met to watch videos of the children interacting with Somantics http://somantics.org/. Anthony is already undertaking pioneering work founding the PLC in Gesture-Based Technology group which is already having a huge impact in Schools in Wales. Take a look! http://kinectsen.wikispaces.com/ http://opensen.wordpress.com/2012/12/02/kinectsen-plc-exploring-gesture-based-technologies/
We showed some edited clips (the videos were also shot by the teachers) of the children exploring Somantics and asked the teachers to comment on what they saw. Key to the sessions was the teachers comfort to interpret the videos in their own time on their own terms without intervention or judgements. In this way the interpretations were able to flow without any pressure to provide ‘positive’ or ‘negative’ responses. The teacher’s perspectives, knowing each child’s personality and engagement profile provided essential contextual information of the ways the interactive apps are improving communication and well-being.
The sessions were also recorded on video (video link when ready) and this proved essential to capture the thick data sets which emerged and appear to be growing. This ranged from the entirely nuanced facial expressions of the teachers, happy to see the children engaging at such a high level, to explaining that a child saying ‘Orange’ in expectation of the next colour on the painting app, was the child’s first ever independent comment on the world. Other key factors were the children’s general behaviour and contentment at the times of filming which impacted upon understandings of their levels of engagement with the apps.
The sessions highlighted the levels and details of information contained in each small clip (which was no more than two minutes each) and the time necessary to spend deconstructing the data from filming the child, to editing and modes of analysis. This indicates that the videoing processes might facilitate some of the methods related to understanding young people with autism by slowing down and taking the time to understand with the children are telling us. CARIAD is looking forward to our next meeting on the 19th September 2013.
Heronsbridge School http://moodle.bridgend.gov.uk/heronsbridge/ gave CARIAD and the Gesture Based Technology group http://kinectsen.wikispaces.com/ the warmest reception on this rainy June day. It is so humbling getting to meet and collaborate with such esteemed and enthusiastic partners. CARIAD were treated to some video based evidence gathered from the schools of the children interacting with some of CARIAD’s apps. The images and the stories from teachers warm the heart and are establishing a broad spectrum of evidence gathering techniques, interpretations of images and, it seems, laying new ground in the fields of video as an evidence based medium, amazing! Barry our collaborator from Muse (Multimedia Used in Special Education) then introduced his new sound apps, see our previous blog http://cariadblog.wordpress.com/2013/05/15/workshop-with-cariad-and-barry-farrimond-of-muse/. Barry’s music philosophy encourages silence as much as sound making, he argues that the sound of our own voice is a powerful conduit for engagement and empowerment (link to vimeo video). The team were really inspired by the results thus far and we are looking forward to the apps release in October. Our Next session will be in Cardiff on the 19th of September where CARIAD will be hosting a range of paper prototyping workshops to facilitate the designs of some new apps.
A thoroughly informative workshop took place at the Centre for Performance analysis today, where CARIAD members Darrell Cobner, Dr. Wendy Keay-Bright and Leah Mc Laughlin met with Barry Farrimond of MUSE (Multimedia Used in Special Education) http://www.museproject.co.uk/meet-the-team/ to work on video coding for the Listening Aloud project http://www.museproject.co.uk/portfolio/listening-aloud/, one of our collaborative projects.
The session followed on from our first scoping event in March, where the principles of video analysis were discussed. Potential approaches for the interpretation of video data were highlighted, using well-established performance analysis design strategies and incorporating themes from the Sounds of Intent framework http://soundsofintent.org/soi.html. Moving on from this, today’s session resulted in a series of coding templates, starting with Sounds of Intent, which can be used to analyse video footage of the Listening Aloud prototypes in use. The aim of analysis at this stage is to highlight the ways in which the Listening Aloud interactive technologies can facilitate child led engagement with musical activities. A broader aim will be to consider the impact of this experience in relation to holistic objectives for individual children – for example gross motor movement and expressive communication. With further input from staff at the participating schools, the next phase of the project will refine these methods and templates to include established diagnostic tools and profiles in special needs education.