|Mouthercise Speech Therapy Program|
| Posted on 22/05/2014 - 10:21|
Mouthercise is a straightforward, effective program that enables teachers to empower children with speech impairments using interactive multi-media elements. We would like to build a fully functional prototype to address this need.
Developmental speech sound errors can have a range of impacts on a child, causing frustration, affecting interaction or compromising academics. Van Daal et al. (2007) found phonological and language problems can affect behaviour. Phonological awareness is related to the development of literacy. Unlike Education, Speech and Language Therapy is not a universal service. Children are only seen if they are identified, referred, and meet local criteria. There is a clear opportunity for a therapy program that can bridge the gap between identification and referral. It gives early learning and primary teachers the tools and skills to provide the necessary care for children with speech disorders. Mouthercise allows these children to improve their speech, interpersonal and educational outcomes.
Our solution is a simple and most effective strategy for supporting speech development and recording students’ progress using the Mouthercise program. It blends learning elements of pictographic representations of speech strategies and hands-on imaginative play-based activities with interactive whiteboard and tablet technology. The Mouthercise program allows teachers to understand, identify, deliver, record and resolve a child’s speech sound disorders in collaboration with speech and language specialists.
Target group and social impact
Teachers and students in Early Years education as well as parents and speech therapists can benefit from the development and resolution of common speech sound challenges that Mouthercise provides. Delivering a flexible, age-appropriate program enables the teacher to collect data in real time while maintaining focus on the children. This improves the quality of instruction and allows for rapid accurate analysis of the information. The social impact would decrease numbers on waiting lists in the health sector, improve communication between allied professionals and empower parents through appropriate home activities to improve the child's communication challenges. This would improve educational and interpersonal outcomes for the children and improve service delivery in related HSE depts.
Competences of the applicant
We are a multi-disciplinary team which consists of; a pioneering developmental speech therapist with 20 years’ experience, a talented multi-media UX designer, a proficient, flexible software engineer and an intuitive, creative project manager. Collaboratively, we are working in the area of e-learning and education technology. We can also leverage a diverse and expert range of ICT skills.
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