Discovering Emotions with Zeely, which is available via the App Store, is an education tool designed to help children with autism learn how to identify emotions and practice recognizing facial expressions. Research has shown that a serious developmental hurdle for children with autism is the inability to interpret and recognize facial expressions. This severely hampers their inter-personal skills.
Natasha D’Souza, the woman behind the development of the new iPad app says, “It’s my opinion that the medical system is drug-oriented and not the only solution,” “Social skills simply aren’t taught anymore in the school due to a lack of resources and limited staff. That’s what motivated me to develop this application.”
The Auditor General of Ontario released in December 2013 report indicating that therapy that could change their lives of the children with autism in the province who often wait for years for diagnosis.
It took one year to develop the application and it aids parents, educators and therapists working with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, Asperger’s Syndrome, ADHD as well as other special needs including Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, Down Syndrome, and Traumatic Brain Injury.
All of the developers and programmers who were involved and worked on the application have children with special needs. D’Souza, has a Master’s degree in Technology Innovation Management from Carleton University, is a professional electrical engineer and mother of two.
The app has reporting tools and detailed data collection to assist with tracking a child’s progress and sharing the information between therapist, home and school. The app is available for download at iTunes.
For more information about education, please visit http://www.icare4autism.org/news/category/education/