Archive of ‘Cerebral Palsy’ category

Rolling the Switch Dice

Noah and his Dad playing Shoots and Ladders using Switch Dice

Noah and his Dad playing Shoots and Ladders using Switch Dice

Recently I blogged about using Switch Dice for playing board games and said I would be sending out samples for review.

Just to recap, Switch Dice is a switch accessible electronic dice. Pressing the switch causes the bright red LEDs to flash and show the number of spaces the player should move in the game.

Stacy Warden, living in Colorado, was one of the first to get one and try it out. She writes a blog – Noah’s Miracle – about her son Noah. He is six years old and was born with a cerebral palsy condition.

The Warden family love playing board games. And, as Noah uses a switch with his other toys, it seemed reasonable to think he would be able to use it to ‘role’ the dice when it was his turn to play. All that’s needed is to plug a switch (any 3.5mm) into the front of Switch Dice and press it to make Switch Dice ‘roll’.

Very simple but for many kids with CP getting actively involved in game play, rather than watching others take their turn, can be difficult if not impossible. I believe Switch Dice has the potential to remove that barrier.

The picture shows Noah and his Dad playing Shoots and Ladders (I think we know the games as Snakes and Ladders in the UK)

Getting Noah involved and participating in the family fun was Stacy’s goal. Read her blog posting Rolling the Dice to see how it worked out.

She also has a lot to say about two other switch adapted toys: Domino Train and Rally Racer and a new app-controlled communication toy Toy-Fi Teddy that lets users swap messages through their phone and tablet.

Noah’s Miracle is a good read – I encourage you to bookmark it and sign-up for regular updates.

Rally Racer review

Last December Kara Melissa (blogs at http://karamelissa.com) purchased the Rally Racer switch adapted car for her Son, Seb.

It was his main Christmas present so very important that it worked for him (and his younger sister). Seb uses switches attached to his tray and has worked hard at learning to target these switches to access his communication aids, computer and iPad games. Rally Racer needed to be a ‘drop-in solution’ for Seb’s switch configuration. It was!

icture showing Seb laughing because he has just crashed the Rally Racer racing cars

Seb has just crashed the Rally Racer cars

Kara initially contacted me via Facebook and we then bounced ideas back and forth on email. It turned out that Seb wanted either a train set or racing car set. In the end it was the Rally Racer racing car set that won out. I built one for Seb and shipped it to Toronto.

Picture showing the two Rally Racer cars Seb has crashed at the track cross-over point.

Rally Racer cars – crashed again

Gifts for Seb was my blog about Kara’s approach to finding toys suitable for a six year old with a cerebral palsy condition and especially her search for toys that ‘continued to deliver’ long after the initial excitement has passed.

Kara tells me Rally Racer was a bit hit on Christmas Day with family and friends. Seb was thrilled to bits 🙂 His absolute favourite bit is crashing the cars – isn’t that typical boy fun.

This week she sent me a blog link to her Rally Racer review. It’s a very good read and Rally Racer gets an A+ rating which ain’t bad in my books.

I encourage everyone to read the Rally Racer review and join the 1300+ parents and professionals who are following her blog.

Watch this space: Kara is also planning to review the Switch Dice for playing board games we designed; I’m looking forward to hearing what she says about it.

World Cerebral Palsy Day

Logo for World Cerebral Palsy Day and link to the website

Logo for World Cerebral Palsy Day

Today, October 1st, 2014 is World Cerebral Palsy Day. Please visit this website: http://www.worldcpday.org to learn more about the condition that effects around 17 million people around the world.

World Cerebral Palsy Day

Is a global innovation project to change the world for people living with cerebral palsy and their families. It is designed to gather ideas from people around the world and make the best of those ideas a reality.

The project is led by a group of non-profit cerebral palsy charities, and supported by organisations in over 45 countries.

It’s a very informative website and there were a bunch of facts that jumped out at me – things I’d not previously known about the condition:

  • There are 17 million people across the world living with cerebral palsy (CP).
  • Another 350 million people are closely connected to a child or adult with CP. It is the most common physical disability in childhood.
  • CP is a permanent disability that affects movement. Its impact can range from a weakness in one hand, to almost a complete lack of voluntary movement.
  • It is a complex disability: 1 in 4 children with CP cannot talk, 1 in 3 cannot walk, 1 in 2 have an intellectual disability, 1 in 4 have epilepsy.
  • CP is a lifelong disability and there is no known cure.

Here is a link to two very helpful infographics: ‘What is Cerebral Palsy?’ and ‘Cerebral Palsy: Diagnosis and Treatment’ you can download from the About page (towards the bottom)

Change My World in 1 Minute

This is all about collecting ideas for ‘products’ that could help people with CP. People are invited to Post an Idea on the website. When they do they have just 1 minute to present the idea – in a video or text – and post it on the World Cerebral Palsy Day website. Ideas are welcome until October 31st after which the judges will decide the winners.

Watch this video to learn more about World Cerebral Palsy Day.