Leah met up with Luke from Cardiff Voluntary Services Cardiff this week when he asked her to appear on their volunteering broadcast to talk about her latest project Breaking Bread. She talked about recent innovations with CARIAD and new plans to extend her recent successful workshops.
Leah has received some extended funding from Cardiff Met Alumni and development fund in the interim and the Breaking Bread team are exploring new opportunities. Watch this space! We shared our air time with @BulliesOut an award winning Charity providing help and support to people and organisations affected by bullying.
Thanks Luke, really enjoyed it and looking forward to working with you in the future 🙂 You can listen to the cast here http://www.mixcloud.com/CardiffInAction/
Thanks to everybody involved in our recent SIP success, exploring performance analysis tools to help teachers capture and evidence engagement in special needs schools. We have developed two templates for you all to use and test out, as well as some helpful tips and hints for storing and managing your video files. You can find all the details on the brand new project website here.
http://videocodingasd.wordpress.com/. Please take a look around and tell us what you think?!?
A big thank you to the Anthony Rhys and the Gesture Based PLC (Professional Learning Community) for providing some feedback on the Alpha versions of Somability last week at Trinity Fields School http://www.trinityfieldsschoolandresourcecentre.co.uk/. As always the day was a great success with teachers, carers and professionals coming together to share evidence, discuss new technologies and provide a genuine support networked group for educators working within special needs http://gesturesen.wikispaces.com/. If Anthony’s movements are anything to go by, Somability will provide fantastic exercise for all those using it! 🙂
Looking forward to catching up in the new term! 🙂
Congratulations to Leah and Cathy for being awarded another two SIP (Strategic Insight Programme) awards. Cathy will work with the company Stillwalks http://stillwalks.wordpress.com/ to create a series of drawings through video. She will also scope some potentials of using some Stillwalk videos to promote wellbeing by ‘bringing the outside in’.
Leah will be working with AnalysisPro http://www.analysispro.net/, Andrew from Exeter House http://www.exeterhouseschool.co.uk/ and Dawn from St Luke’s http://www.stlukes.herts.sch.uk/ special needs school to scope ways of tagging videos of Intensive Interaction sessions. Thank you very much to Cardiff Met and everybody who helped on our bids!
CARIAD has a fantastic day at the Millennium Centre today facilitating Connected Studio developing ways of making classical music more accessible to audiences through digital content and platforms. We also learned about new technologies and ideas to further establish links between academia and the media. We were reunited with Peter from PDR, Emily from School of Education and Katherine from CSAD.
We had an eventful day designing our new ‘Classy App’, a prototype to condense and consolidate some of the content on BBC 3 Radio, to renew and reinvigorate an audience with an interest in classical music but perhaps a bit shy about taking those initial first steps into the genre. Thank you Connected Studio, BBC, Hannah, CEWN and everybody else organising such a successful dynamic day, lots of possibilities!
Thank you Andrew from Exeter House School http://www.exeterhouseschool.co.uk/ for hosting such an eventful day yesterday: exploring the possibilities of video tagging to capture Intensive Interaction sessions with young people with learning difficulties. Leah from CARIAD and Jon Moore from Analysis Pro http://www.analysispro.net/ had an eventful first meeting at Salisbury yesterday. We looked at some videos of ‘Intensive Interaction’ with the lovely Dawn all the way from St Luke’s Foundation School, Hertfordshire http://www.stlukes.herts.sch.uk/tv_radio/index.html showing us the amazing work they are doing capturing evidence of their intensive Interactions with young people with learning difficulties. Lee from IT and Rachel another teacher from Exeter House completed our group.
We started by discussing some of the problems encountered particularly with evidencing children’s engagement and communication. The focus was on the Intensive Interaction sessions, a widely used model to encourage communication and one that has had incredible results. We also learned about some research into capturing these Intensive Interaction sessions using video, and the strategies and recommendations the teachers have developed. This ranged from the angle of the camera to the size of the frame. We learned that the focus is always on the face in Intensive Interactions and that it has been argued that video can capture nuances and idiosyncratic details within these sessions more effectively than other measurement models.
Then we discussed some of the problems with capturing the sessions. Many many issues were discussed from technical problems (for example not enough room to store HD data on school servers), to aesthetic and communicative features of video (for example a bird’s eye view coupled with a close up, narrative within the clips, and a sense of the environment with less than perfect filming)to much more conceptual and challenging problems (for example subjective interpretations of behaviours, how much detail and history of the child is needed to make a claim for improvement)…and this was just the morning!
Later Jon took the floor and gave a very brief overview of some of the software tools and packages he has been developing in partnerships for his entire career. Originally used for sports analysis we discussed some of the potentials of adapting some of the strategies, tools and software to begin to code and manage some of the video from the Intensive Interactions. To pick out key moments, file information and use it to build up layers of metadata of rich and dynamic visual evidence of the children’s engagement. Looking forward to the next stages!
CARIAD’s Wendy and Leah and partner from CARIAD Interactive Joel Gethin Lewis had the warmest of welcomes and most productive of workshops at Learning Curve Gadlys, Independent Living Resource Centre in Aberdare this morning. This will be teams’ new home for the coming months working in partnership with the staff at the centre to develop a brand new set of applications, making movement irresistible for people with learning difficulties.
We are always a bit nervous going into a new centre for the first time to meet our new stakeholders. We want to give them the best possible introduction to the projects to create a supportive and dynamic workshop environment so that we can really understand and learn from the people who work closest with our end users, so the pressure was on!
After some slightly perplexed looks when CARIAD Interactive demonstrated the ‘Top Hat Smile Detector’, the group took to the paper-prototyping knowledge exchange workshop with ease, and of course smiles!
It was a true delight to capture some of the prototype ideas from the group, to listen intently to their expertise and to really get a sense of the community, the fantastic work each individual achieves on a daily basis and to be immersed in their world. Within only a few hours our group identified several key areas in designing for users with various levels of mobility.
The most significant outcome of the day was bringing on board such an engaging and involved group who (in the space of a morning) took complete ownership of this project and have integrated Somability firmly into their resource centre and local community. Looking forward to our next visit to feedback some early prototypes!
CARIAD’s Leah Mc Laughlin presented some of her research activities at the international conference ‘Creative Processes in Art’ at the Centre for Fine Arts Lisbon.http://creativeprocessesinart.weebly.com/index.html. There was plenty of insightful discussion over the two days. Some interesting papers for CARIAD included: the relationship between corporate businesses and performance art. We were also treated to a guided tour of the infamous University building which houses the faculty of Fine Arts, it even included areas which are no longer open to the public!
It is always very informative participating in such an interesting conference topic and to speak to a largely theoretical and philosophical audience. It seems that whenever ‘creativity’ is discussed, its multiple interpretations and various modes of application and understanding elicit thoughtful and provoking debate. It also became apparent that CARIAD’s commitment to applied methods also has a clear and necessary place within these largely theoretical consortiums.
The ways in which CARIAD directly works with people and our developing research methods to accommodate this was a point of interest and praise for many of the delegates. Some very interesting relationships were established and CARIAD are looking forward to many future collaborations.
CARIAD had our biggest event to date on Thursday, our official launch at the iconic Senedd building in Cardiff bay. We were honoured to have the support of three assembly members. Leanne Wood AM officially launched the centre and offered wonderful words of support and encouragement for the team. Eluned Parrott AM was our official sponsor and made the day possible. She presented some insightful thoughts and offered her congratulations to the successes of CARIAD thus far. We are looking forward to welcoming Eluned Parrott AM at some of our workshops in the near future! Jenny Rathbone AM also attended the day in full support of all of our research projects. We were also thrilled to have the wonderful Glynis from the Hollies School and Anthony from Trinity Fields on the podium to represent our stakeholders and say a few words about their experiences working with CARIAD. John Killick from Dementia Positive closed the session with a touching poem and invited everybody to come and have fun at his workshop later.
In true CARIAD style the day was much much more than a launch, we also hosted two separate workshops and demonstrated some of our capturing and video coding technologies working with AnalysisPro LTD http://www.analysispro.net/ and the Centre for Performance Analysis http://www3.cardiffmet.ac.uk/english/sport/about/staff/academic/pa/pages/home.aspx
Wendy’s Paper Prototyping workshop used paper to rapid prototype interactive and non-verbal communicative devices. The morning invited our PLC (professional learning community) group in Gesture-Based Technologies http://kinectsen.wikispaces.com/ and many new stakeholders to come up with a technology, using only paper, which might facilitate communication. These were presented back to the group and a vote was taken on which technology to develop further. The ‘rhythm detector’ won in the end and our invited coding and technology experts from our partner’s at CARIAD Interactive http://cariadinteractive.com/ created a code and working prototype which we were all playing on by the end of the session, not bad for a day’s work!
Our second workshop was last of Cathy’s OPAN funded sessions, we invited John Killick from Dementia Positive to come and run one of his infamous ‘invitation to have fun’ events, and fun it was. We made human statues, described objects through touch and even had a puppet show! While the sound of laughter was echoing from the building throughout the day the message was poignant: Dementia is not something to be frightened of or to shy away from. We need to find ways to engage with it and adopt a more positive and responsive attitude towards investigating and understanding some of the underlying features of the condition and ‘we must not be afraid to laugh’! You can read more about the day’s events and see more pictures here on Cardiff Met’s main page: http://www3.cardiffmet.ac.uk/English/News/Pages/CardiffMetlaunchesinteractiveandinclusiveartsresearchfacility.aspx
Our latest edition to the team Steve Coleman PhD student (read about him here http://cariadblog.wordpress.com/2013/09/25/cariad-awarded-ria-research-innovation-award-to-support-new-phd-student-steve-coleman-investigating-the-benefits-of-creative-play-for-people-with-dementia/ ) also made this fantastic video documenting the day’s events, take a look https://vimeo.com/75386114 thanks Steve!
CARIAD really has so many people to thank for the successes of the day and rather than thank a few here publicly we would rather thank EVERYBODY privately. Here’s looking forward to making this an annual event, thanks to all involved
CARIAD are delighted to announce the latest edition to the team, our first fully funded PhD student Steve Coleman. Steve was awarded the prestigious RIA (Research Innovation Award) scholarship from Cardiff Met to research the therapeutic benefits of creative ludic play for people with dementia. This is a part of one of CARIAD’s bigger projects led by Cathy into well-being within the aging population.
Steve completed an outstanding Masters here at Cardiff Met which looked at the healing potentials of being playful. We are thrilled that he has been given the opportunity to develop the project here at CARIAD and to have such a dynamic and committed new academic associate to contribute to the centre. I’m sure everybody will be keen to extend their congratulations in due course. On behalf of CARIAD, well done Steve excited to have you on board and looking forward to working with you!