La Mesita, a virtual desk for the reading development of children with disabilities
Free application that, through play and exploration, facilitates the process of learning to read and write in children with disabilities through technologies based on inclusive education.
The way in which the exploration is proposed, autonomous and without order, is a way of learning that helps in the construction of learning to read, facilitates an enrichment of vocabulary and familiarization with elements of reading awareness.
The virtual desk is designed with different activity paths, which are chosen and adapted to the needs of each child. At first, an understanding of the initial level of the different dimensions to be worked on is made, in order to select the most appropriate games and design a personalized program that helps and encourages reading. The activities can be modified according to the child’s evolution.
It is a flexible virtual tool with four dimensions. First, the development of oral comprehension is done through the viewing of videos, reading texts, and activities such as sorting stories as they are narrated. Phonological awareness is worked on through the fragmentation and creation of words, with the support of drawings, the identification of sounds and phonics activities with the microphone. At the semantic level, words of the same categories are grouped and questions are asked about the reason for these differentiations. Finally, vocabulary acquisition is done through description games with adjectives to learn their meaning and their use in other contexts.
The La Mesita model was born from a study with children with Down Syndrome, and has worked for an understanding of the necessary skills to be acquired by these children to achieve a successful development in reading and writing.
Level of implementation
To develop the application, a study was conducted with 32 children with Down Syndrome who were testing La Mesita for 5 months. From there, CEDETi designed this inclusive tool that has a positive impact on the learning process of children with intellectual disabilities.