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A robot has been specifically designed for children with Autism to assist them in strengthening an individual’s multi-functioning skills.

Called Leka, the motion-sensitive robot provides sensory stimulation through movement, lights, vibration and sound while children play learning games.

Leka 1. Facebook
Image source: Facebook

 

According to the DailyMail, the creators of Leka say that the little round robot can assist children with Autism by helping them navigate the challenges of learning and social interaction.  Creators of the robot say that it can also help to stimulate children with developmental disorders such as Down’s syndrome or other children with multiple disabilities.

Chief executive and founder of Leka, Ladislas de Toldi, told the Daily Mail that:

“As a robot, Leka is both predictable and stable in its interactions, which is very important for the child’s sense of safety and serenity.  Leka caters to the specific needs of the kids and focuses on multi-sensory stimulation. It’s colours, sounds, vibrations help improve sensory processing and reduces anxiety.”

leka 2. Facebook
Image Source: Facebook

Though still at prototype stage, Leka has been designed as a tool to help parents and caregivers teach their children using play through therapy in their own homes.  The robot model revolves around the concept of gamification, where typical elements of gaming, for example point scoring and competition are applied to learning for children.

The robot has been on display at the global consumer electronics and technology trade show CES 2016, in Las Vegas and the company is raising funds through crowdfunding to mass produce it to help children worldwide.

In a recent interview with the Daily Mail, Carol Povey, director of the National Autistic Society’s Centre for Autism in the UK said:

“This is a very exciting time for autism, with lots of innovative work going on around virtual reality, communication apps and wearable technology to measure things like stress levels,” she said, “This prototype [Leka] is one of a range of emerging technologies which have the potential to transform the lives of people on the autism spectrum.

“Many autistic people are drawn to technology, particularly the predictability it provides, which means it can be a very useful means of engaging children, and adults too. We use a range of devices and technologies in our own schools, including iPads, cause and effect toys, and software like Games Maker Studio and Minecraft.

“This robot is still in development but holds a lot of promise. We’re particularly interested by the team’s plan to collect data on children’s interaction with the robot and how this data could increase our understanding of autism.

“In the long term, we hope this data will inform better support for people on the autism spectrum.’

 

 

  • What a wonderful invention! I bet he’d be fun for anyone, too.

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  • a great invention which will help many children.

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  • my son is on the spectrum, and he would have really loved this toy

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  • What a great invention. I hope it will be affordable so every child that would benefit has the opportunity to utalise it and reap the rewards.

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  • I’d love to get this for my son who has special needs and is blind, so hard to find toy’s that are suitable for him that he enjoys :)

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  • What a lovely project. And it’s so expensive. I really hope they will get funds from the Government because such a project could improve the life of so many people.

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  • This is quite interesting and worth more looking into – thanks for sharing the latest in upcoming technology. Being predictable and stable is certainly important in technology. Will be interesting to watch the journey and application of this technology.

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  • That sounds amazing. I hope it is affordable when it’s released


    • The cost is always a big factor in buying and using technology and I do hope it is affordable too. Even with funding technology can be expensive.

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  • Caring and supporting children with autism takes a lot of talented people. Assuming Leka is successful, I am sure there will be many parents and other support carers, as well as autistic children, who will greatly appreciate this invention. Congratulations to the team behind the development.

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  • What a amazing leap forward, I do hope that when it comes it does not price its self out of the reach of most of the families that need it

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  • Sounds like an amazing invention. I just hope that its readily and easily available to families when the time comes.

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  • Anything that helps people is a wonderful step forward.

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  • that seems like a really big breakthrough! wow i hope that this robot is able to help so many kids and give them a new way to interact.

    Reply

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