Smart toys in teaching of social studies concepts to children with intellectual disability

Download
2017
Ekin, Cansu Çiğdem
In Turkey and all around the world, technology-supported learning environments for children with intellectual disability (ID) have not yet reached to a desired point and there are limited studies that investigate the effectiveness of advanced technologies in teaching social studies concepts to children with ID. For this purpose, the current study aims to investigate the effectiveness of smart toys in teaching social studies concepts to children with ID. The mentioned smart toys/technology enhanced learning environments were developed in the scope of this study. A multi-method research design was used to determine whether this study has a positive effect on teaching social studies concepts to children with ID. In addition, children’motivation were analyzed together with the usability of (effective, efficient and satisfactory) the technology from teachers’ point of view. Six individuals with IDs and four special education teachers formed the participants of the study.To be eligible for participation, individuals were expected to meet some requirements such as the ability to follow simple verbal instructions. Semi structured interviews were conducted with special education teachers to understand their opinions about the smart toy. Four kinds of data were collected, namely effectiveness, reliability, social validity, and usability. According to the results of the analysis of effectiveness data, smart toys have a positive effect in teaching social studies concepts to children with ID.Also, interview results revealed that, smart toys increased student motivation, and that smart toy technology developed in this study was effective, efficient, and satisfactory.