Amy HuckfieldIndustrial Design & Technology BA
Helping children with ADHD to independently manage their condition
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder affects around 210,000 children in the UK, 5.2 million in the US. It impairs a child's ability to develop skills key to performing tasks required of everyday life and develop at the same rate as their peers. As a result, children who suffer from this disorder will often not reach their full potential in education and life. There is a genuine need for an alternative concept to help, as currently no existing solutions tackle the core problem of ADHD, self-regulation, effectively; they only go as far as attempts to solve the superficial requirement of insuring the child is easier to manage for the teacher, and less of a distraction to the class. Kudo provides an effective, holistic, solution directed and validated by actionable insights from an iterative co-design approach with stakeholders and experts in the field of ADHD. It tackles and sustainably improves upon the core problem of ADHD, an inability to self-regulate, in order to give back control and responsibility for the condition to the child, to allow them to independently manage their condition and their attention in the classroom, to improve outcomes and increase their potential. The solution is based around a strategy that advocates breaks from the current environment when attention is lost on a task, in order to help the child to remain calm, refocus and sustain attention on a task. A small, discrete band that sits on the wrist to measure the attention levels of the child, it will alert the child by wriggling when their attention levels drop below a normal functioning level. Every time the child is able to stay focused or successfully refocus on a task they are rewarded with Kudos points. The wristband supports the child but gives them the responsibility to take charge of their ADHD, and the positive self-esteem when they improve. A personalised digital companion; when the child returns from school and plugs in their band, their Kudos points can be exchanged for time to go on quests with their companion. The quests are games providing skills-based learning that aim to improve skills impacted by ADHD. Their companion rewards their achievements, but also stimulates them to try and engage in tasks that they find more testing. From the wristband, attention data is tracked through the whole day, collected and fed wirelessly to software that displays it against the school timetable of the child, for the teacher to be able to review. This software enables teachers to uncover patterns of attention, or triggers, in order to help the child build on successes, and adapt teaching styles to support the learning style of the child. If the child is medicated it also offers the opportunity to be able to see the effect the dosage has, objectively. The system develops and adapts alongside the child; the premise is that the strategy for self-regulation will be developed, after repeated use and become subconscious without the need for product aids.