Scratch and a sensorboard as a tool for classroom integration.

Improving the experience for impaired users using Scratch and sensorboards
Boris Susanj
Michele Cagol

The workshop aims to provide an innovative approach on using Scratch and sensor boards for developing personalized support and didactics opportunities to disabled students. A new version of the Scratchboard has been created by an Italian team of teachers, educators and engineers for this purpose and in order to provide a better experience to impaired users and other people with accessibility or cognitive issues. With a simple and friendly environment like Scratch and a small and economic add-on like a sensor board we’re now able to cut average costs of individualized intervention and project development in the case of kids with special needs. As for the learning circle proposed by constructivism and Scratch itself, we believe in the idea that also disabled people should be able to evolve usage models, learning strategies and keep doing it for their entire life, not just before buying a new instrument. Sensors, buttons, triggers, you name it, can be easily created with spare stuff as learned in our workshop with the Scratchboard, the basic idea is to provide the same opportunity to disabled students and to educators that will take care of them. Scratch and sensor boards will supply the missing part of the equation being that commercial aids and resources are still so expensive and scarcely known that are almost neglected, hard to find or simply not used in the average school. Nevertheless the board will not substitute professional material and more sophisticated aids, will instead provide an economical, easy to develop test and set up environment for creating new accessible learning paths, creating better opportunities to choose actively and after contextual reflections and experimentations on what’s best for that kid, for this environment, goals, learning needs, difficulties.



Wizard Girl
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