Modelling emotions with interactive toys (idea)

So, I have another project coming up in my physical computing module. I am looking forwards to this because I really do love creating physical products!

I have a few ideas for what kind of assistive technology toy I would like to make.

So Disney has this ‘Disney infinity’ series which is basically little statues that come to life inside the video game when placed on a platform. Stemming from this and combined with the fact that I saw the awesome work that the ‘Ultimaker 3 extended’ could do, I was thinking that I could recreate this idea with toy models that interacted with one another to show an autistic child how to understand emotions.


Each model would interact with each other to display a feeling, so a model for sad, a model for happy, a model for anger etc. They would be able to interact with each other using proximity sensors or could be controlled via bluetooth with possible voice recordings and would also be able to output a colour to display the emotion.

It’s a probably a little far fetched and complex for someone who is just learning to code, but I really liked the idea of modelling behaviours and  using toys. I used to be a teaching assistant to special needs children and a lot of the work involved modelling situations so that they could understand better or learn from the situation. What better way to show a child then through playing and learning?

It’s also related and inspired by the ‘footprints interactive puppets’ by Simone Capano. An app allows the parent to tell a story and send it to the puppet.


This idea, may not go to plan, but I definitely like the idea of toys that aid social interaction and cognition with autistic children!


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