A new smart toy aimed at helping young children learn languages, basic objects and math whilst reducing screen time has been revealed on fundraising website Kickstarter.
Kiri is a screenless wooden block which interacts with cards displaying objects and colours. The toy encourages children to explore surroundings in a hands-on way, while learning and then expanding their knowledge of a variety of subjects.
The toy could be an ideal addition to the lives of young children who are blind or visually impaired.
In the absence of a screen, the wooden toy has a built-in AI voice, which can be set to one of three languages. It features two modes: Explore, in which the toy can recognise pictures of objects when placed upon each specific card, or quiz, which asks the child to match up pictures following audible prompts.
The project, at time of writing, is over halfway to their fundraising goal. If successful, the smart toy is scheduled for a worldwide release date of April 2020.
World Health Organization guidelines from earlier this year recommended no screen time for children under three and screen time of no more than one hour for children ages three and four.
Additional research from the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health suggests high levels of screen time increases the risk of ADD, depression, and anxiety in children.
Whilst the gadget is still in a development stage, we here at Double Tap think the addition of Braille to the cards, or having a separate pack designed for blind and VI children learning braille, would open up amazing opportunities.
What do you think? Is this a toy you would consider buying for your son or daughter? What developments would you like to see incorporated for the young VI community?
You can find out more about the project by visiting https://kiritoys.com/
Editor, producer and social media whizz kid for Double Tap Online