This post introduces our readers to a company founded in 2013 called “Whole Brain Edutainment“. Tracy Wannemacher, M.S. CCC-SLP/L, and Antonio Sanders, an AAA game developer, are the folks behind this company that makes educational apps for kids. Together they developed unique speech apps for kids called “ABC app for Kids” loaded with educational and developmental value. The apps are based on applied behavioral principles and include a broad range of early vocabulary including emotions, actions, and pronouns!
The apps feature relevant vocabulary for typically developing children while taking into account the learning style of a variety of children. The pairing of the coloring pages (photo left) that feature art from the app offers truly unique learning experiences. Their apps focus on speech and language development for children with autism, apraxia, language or articulation delays, ESL, and typically developing children.
Immediately I thought what a great resources these apps are for the many schools that have immigrant students who need to learn English. With conflicts raging in many corners of our world, the Canadian government has welcomed thousands of immigrants from these areas. There are now, April 2016, just over 25,000 Syrian refugees who’ve arrived in Canada since the Liberal government rolled out its $678-million plan for refugee resettlement and 1,600 of those have settled in Nova Scotia.
Their Facebook Page says that their main goal is to help children. They hope to leave the world a little bit better by bringing some edutainment to children. They have created unique, simple, fun apps that will enhance early learning skills on multiple levels. Whole Brain Edutainment currently has 3 app versions of their ABC app for kids on all 3 platforms including the App store, Amazon and Google.
The team at SentioLife Solutions thanks Tracy Wannemacher for writing a guest about “Whole Brain Edutainment”.
Guest Post by Tracy Wannemacher, M.S. CCC-SLP/L
Whole Brain Edutainment: Speech Apps for Kids –
ABC App for Kids
I am pretty sure when you are asked to write a blog you do not lead with, “I have never written one before.” What an honor to be asked to compose a blog for a reputable company such as SentioLife Solutions. I had the privilege of connecting with Lorna and her business on LinkedIn recently. I was immediately impressed with the quality and integrity behind this company’s product as well as why the business was started. So, when asked to write a blog I said absolutely. I would be thrilled! Which leads me to my topic and one of my passions… Whole Brain Edutainment, a company that I co-founded with Antonio Sanders.
I met Tony through mutual friends several years ago. He is a game developer and artist. I am a speech language pathologist with all kinds of ideas for toys and therapy materials but no one has ever asked me my opinion about the development of their products. I am pretty picky about shopping for my kiddos. I ask myself questions such as what will this toy do? What are the learning opportunities? Will a child even like this toy? So, when you have the opportunity to create something that has been sitting on sticky notes in your home for years, you take a leap of faith. Somebody finally asked me! The same thought process goes for apps! With today’s market flooded with so many apps it can be difficult to discern what might be helpful, and fun of course, for your child. We took the thinking out of this process for you at an inexpensive price.
We thought about early vocabulary for 2-3 years; we considered a variety of sound sequences and auditory bombardment to facilitate sound development in toddlers and young children; three matching modes are provided to increase the number games within the app and to challenge the learner cognitively; we used children’s voices to motivate the child to learn and to engage with the app; and we made the appearance of the app look similar to the classic wooden puzzle, an already familiar toy. We thought about little fingers trying to learn how to match pictures and took the whole swiping experience out to encourage isolation and purposeful use of the index finger.
Have you ever considered the content of an app? I have downloaded hundreds of apps and many of the kids’ apps make plenty of noise without any purpose. We thought about this. The app only provides a reinforcement for the correct match of a puzzle piece. This behavioral principal (Pavlovian) eliminates banging and random swiping on the tablet. The child has to focus and learn something from the app to be successful.
Many persons have asked does the app have colors and shapes?
This question causes me to chuckle when I think about language development and teaching kids purposeful language to use for communication purposes. What we did consider are pre-literacy skills by including each letter of the alphabet and the written word for each correct match. Pair this feature of the app with our free coloring pages which are depicted as line art in the PRO VERSION, and further promote your child’s learning opportunity. We have developed an engaging experience that is fun and provides learning opportunities on a variety of levels.
Come visit whole brain edutainment at http://wbefun.com to learn more about Antonio Sanders and I. There you can find links to our apps, free coloring pages, play the A-E Version for free, and checkout our growing resource list. But please be sure to visit the app store to read our reviews and consider adding our app to your repertoire on your tablet or phone. It is also available on google and amazon!
Whole Brain Edutainment