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The Injini project based out of Albany, California has created a suite of cognitive training games and an AAC application for children with cognitive delays. This project is supported by a philanthropic contribution of a global game design company. These games are currently under beta testing with school districts (at the preschool and elementary levels) and at early intervention centers. This session will illustrate the relevance of the Injini application for children with autism in the areas of early intervention, teaching social skills, creating focus, teaching early literacy and numeracy skills. Results from our field tests at the Albany Unified School district, California and at the Center for Early Intervention and Deafness, Berkeley that show the impact of these games and the AAC application for children with Autism in the age range of 18 months - 7 years will be discussed during this session. Video illustrations of teachers using this application for the development of social skills, for early intervention and incorporation of early literacy and numeracy skills will also be presented.
Parents and educators at the field testing locations have reported that children show increased focus levels and listen better to direction while playing these games. As visual learners with an increased preference for haptic modality, children with autism are more engaged and excited while playing these games. Educators have utilized this increased level of engagement to help improve the vocabulary of children. This session will demonstrate how the games developed thus far assist in the areas of practicing fine motor skills (isolation of a finger), pre-writing skills, cause and effect awareness, temporal awareness, hand-eye coordination, money recognition, basic visual memory skills, counting and math, visual processing and spatial awareness (matching, color-shape-size discrimination), shape recognition, focus and response inhibition among choices. Concepts like numbers, colors, shapes, sizes, differences, functions and vocabulary are an integral part of these games. The Injini application has also proven to be an effective medium to help train children on positive behavior.
Alongside the games, the Injini application has an AAC application that has a child-friendly interface to enable easier communication for children with cognitive and/or fine-motor disabilities. This AAC application has taken into consideration touch response, scrolling, dragging and icon sizing to be personalized according to the cognitive and fine motor skills of the individual user. Results from field testing indicate that the relevance of categorization for children with autism appears to work effectively in this AAC application.
We will present how parents and teachers utilize the customizable reward system, statistical tracking of online behavior patterns, and real-time monitoring and controls over our beta testing. The audience will also have an opportunity to play a selection of the games during this session.
Results from the use of Injini application at the Hope Technology School, Palo Alto on varied age groups of audiences will be presented. Feedback from educators, administrators, speech pathologists, autism specialists and parents will be demonstrated via a video. The relevance of game based learning for very young children and its significance in early intervention will be discussed.
Participants will benefit from understanding
The vision for the Injini project to create games for children with disabilities and the philanthropic vision of this project will be discussed.
Please do get in touch with us (Injini.firstname.lastname@example.org) on any questions about the application, abstract or the scope of the presentation. Our hope through this presentation is to illustrate how latest technology can be made available for all children. We hope to hear from educators and parents on game based instructional and early interventional practices that will benefit children with cognitive and/or motor delays.
Content Area: Early Intervention
Sri Srinivasan, M.A., M.S.