I wanted to start this series of posts where we learn about good software to use with children with autism, with my personal favourite, ‘ Mind Reading – The interactive guide to emotions’. This software was developed by a team of scientists at the Cambridge university led by professor Simon Baron – Cohen (lead author of the first study to show that children with autism have delays in the development of a theory of mind). Children and adults on the autism spectrum often face difficulty reading/understanding people’s faces and voices, making social interactions extremely difficult and stressful. Mind reading software provides an opportunity to study emotions through the use of video clips, stories and voices. You can later test the emotions learnt through quizzes and tests.
The software has 412 different emotional concepts! And since each of us show subtle variations when expressing the same emotion, the software has six different people expressing the same emotion with voice. There are also mini stories to provide contexts. The software has six levels to choose from and has three helpers. For instance, initially start with level one and child helper, which will automatically filter appropriate emotions to choose from. It also has a set of collectible rewards like trains, musical instruments, birds,etc. to provides incentives on correct learning.
The software has three main features – Emotions library, Learning center and games zone. The emotions library has 412 emotions grouped into 24 related groups, each emotion with six video and audio clips by different people. Each emotion also has definition, synonyms and notes, etc. This is also available for purchase separately. The learning centre has lessons and quizzes to learn emotions systematically and later test our knowledge. They are graded into various levels and grow with the child! The games zone has various settings like school, office, market where we have to guess how the people are feeling in a given situation. There are multiple situations that provide hours of practice. For all the Harry porter fans, this section has Daniel Radcliffe showcasing various emotions!
This software is a costly one priced $ 139 for the entire software and $64 for the emotions library alone. But it is definitely worth the price. If you plan to buy only one software for your child, then go for this one! The following link will take you the website where thee is detailed information and a demo for the software. You can purchase the software here:
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