Solidarity Vacations inserts computational thinking for people with intellectual disabilities
Vacaciones Solidárias é um projeto da Fundação Telefônica Vivo (Telefônica Vivo Foundation). e nessa edição executado em parceria com a ASID Brasil, which aims to , which aims to a partir da destinação de 15 dias das férias dos colaboradores da empresa.
In its 8th edition, Vacations brought a challenge: the insertion of computational thinking for people with intellectual disabilities at an institution located in the East Zone of São Paulo, the Centro Social Nossa Senhora da Penha (Our Lady of Penha Social center) - CENHA.
Para a concretização deste desafio, durante os dias 18 a 29 de novembro foram selecionados 13 volunteers from 6 países, Brasil, Equador, Peru, Reino Unido, Argentina e Espanha para realizarem oficinas sobre pensamento computacional, a partir de uma metodologia chamada ProgramaÊ, where the basic precept is: everyone can program!
Following the guidelines of the Fundação Telefônica Vivo for Solidarity Vacations 2019, the volunteers had 3 major missions to carry out at the Institution:
- Knowledge: inserting technology into teachers’ daily lives;
- Learning: use technology to enhance the learning of people with disabilities; and
- Strengthening management: using technology as a development tool for the institution.
The Institution - Centro Social Nossa Senhora da Penha - CENHA
CENHA is a non-profit social organization whose main purpose is to assist people with intellectual disabilities and in situations of social vulnerability, currently with 418 beneficiaries. The organization is divided into three areas for the development of activities: health, pedagogical and support center.
Aligning all of these areas of CENHA’s performance, together with the challenge proposed by Solidarity Vacations, 187 students from the Pedagogical and Support Centers carried out activities of computational thinking as a mechanism for improving the learning of People with Intellectual Disabilities.
Computer Thinking Workshops - ProgramaÊ!
It is an initiative of the Fundação Telefônica, Fundação Lemann (Lemann Foundation) and Instituto Conhecimento pra Todos (Knowledge for All Institute) which aims at dissemination of computer science knowledge/programming for teachers, youth and children. This is done through workshops that instigate digital culture and computational thinking, based on plugged-in (computer use) and unplugged (without computer use) programming. The goal is to prepare them for the development of 21st century skills and for them to understand in practice, the power of technology as a daily educational tool in school life.
During the two weeks of ProgramaÊ activities at Vacations, students were divided into groups according to their degree of disability (mild, moderate and severe). With that, they performed activities that varied from handicrafts (creating an avatar), using recyclable materials to create a cart, to programming using a robot, all permeated by the element of technology.
There were a total of 10 workshops for more than 120 Institution’s students.
All activities had elements that denote technology daily in People with Disabilities’ life. The workshops were previously adapted according to the profile of beneficiaries of CENHA,based on the constant alignment of the details of the project with the institution’s educators. The volunteers were divided into 4 groups, in order to develop the activities jointly and as a team.
Workshops for students with mild intellectual disabilities
- I am music:workshop that also included the use of the Make Make device (stimulating the student to correlate an object and the emission of a sound), with a difference: the students played songs (happy birthday to you, golden rosemary, among others) from scores previously placed locally.This workshop has a difference in relation to “my mother told me to hit this one”: they were for students with a milder level of intellectual disability, who have a more developed cognition for monitoring the scores sequences. The interesting thing about this workshop was the volunteer's perception in introducing this workshop before the beginning of the programming activities, with the use of computers, since, with the I am a Music workshop, students had greater interaction and, consequently, greater encouragement to focus on programming workshops.
Melissa loves the programming workshops. She naturally cries every day, but when it comes to the workshop, she smiles and only says how much she is happy.SARA, INSTITUTION’S EDUCATOR OF THE PEDAGOGICAL CENTER.
- Security in the Internet:workshop from a “giant board” where students and volunteers were “pins” and had been placed in some s situations of internet’s word to see as they would approach determined circumstance. At the end, they held a debate and awareness about what was appropriate and inappropriate to be done on social networks.
- Edu Tortoise First Steps: students learn to program! From using a robot (tortoise) the students learned basic programming elements with the ultimate goal of executing a command through the Tortoise. Therefore, elements that work with notion of space and laterality, such as walking, stopping, turning, forward, backward, among others, were worked on during the workshops. It is interesting to note that with the repetition of this activity for two days, the students were able to recall the elements of the program to execute without major difficulties on the second day. Worked concepts: algorithms and logic (determination of steps and creation of rules), patterns (using similarities), abstraction (eliminating unnecessary details), evaluation (making judgments, correcting and repairing), etc.
- Scratch : it’s a programming tool that students uses to develop a game. From three properly established scenarios, the students created an avatar on the computer and executed commands such as: emitting sound, walking, stopping, forward, backward, etc. This workshop was considered the “most difficult” and the students were able to connect and work all the concepts covered in previous workshops: algorithms and logic, patterns, abstractions, evaluations, creativity and attention.
The student Victor has autism and never participates in any CENHA activity, he just walks around the institution’s corridors. Thanks to Vacations’ workshops, Victor managed to assemble a cart and ran out to show and tell his friends, who were in other workshops, what he had done.CRISTIANE, COORDINATOR OF CENHA’S SUPPORT CENTER.
Workshops for students with mild intellectual disabilities
- Race for Recycling: workshop for the elaboration of a cart from recyclable materials. The workshop focuses on learning by doing, creating, looking for errors, reviewing and investigating and collaborating. In the end, there is a competition with the elaborated carts, in which they walk through the filling of a coupled bladder which, when released, the cart starts its movement. This workshop helps students to work out the routine, from step-by-step to assembling the object, creativity to decorating the carts as well as the notion of space for the workshop.
- 3D glasses: as the name suggests, the workshop consisted in students creating 3D glasses for use. This workshop was a demand brought by CENHA professors, after training about ProgramaÊ with the Institution in October. They believe that access to virtual reality, through the application “Google VR Cardboard”, brings greater democratization to the technology access and the use of other resources to which students do not have access.
- E.U R.E.C.I.C.L.O (I Recicle): beneficiaries were encouraged to create masks, robots and carnival accessories from painting and using recyclable materials to be used at the closing party, the Carnarobô. In addition to creating these materials, students worked on motor coordination, creativity and detailing of actions according to previously established steps.
- Labyrinth: the purpose of this activity involved stimulating laterality (right and left), motor and cognitive coordination in students, starting from the main purpose: definition of how to cross a labyrinth that had some obstacles. The importance of starting and ending processes was also a guiding element in this activity.
Workshops for students with mild intellectual disabilities
- I Avatar: the students were encouraged to create avatars, based on drawings of a human body, without gender. The purpose of this activity was to notice the students’ expressions and feelings about themselves, from the construction of a character: the avatar. In addition, the avatars made by the students were used as banners at the project’s closing party, the Carnarobô.
Antônio runs workshops on the simplest levels (handicrafts) and he told me he didn’t know how to sign the drawing with his own name. So, I tried to help him write “Antônio” with ice cream sticks, and the teacher who was watching the activity at the time said it was the first time he wrote his own name.MIGUEL ANGEL, VOLUNTEER FROM ARGENTINA.
- My mother told me to hit this one: workshop from the use of a device called “Make Make” in which, through a plugin and application on the computer, students touch an object and it emits a sound. The purpose of this activity was to correlate sounds with objects.
At the end of ProgramaÊ workshop, the "CarnaRobô" event happened, in which students and volunteers produced costumes, in previous workshops, to parade in a great carnival procession. In addition, as a legacy of Vacations at the institution, the volunteers created methodologies from the workshops they ran, so that teachers could take ownership of these workshops to introduce them into the institution’s day-to-day activities, after the project was closed.
Volunteer Skills Development
Solidarity Vacations has the primary purpose of improving institutions in several countries, however, the element of skills development of volunteers is extremely guiding, not only for the human development of each one, but for the improvement of analytical skills as an employee of Telefônica Vivo.
Volunteers have diverse knowledge and cultures and, therefore, the richness of experience exchange can generate incredible solutions for the Institution, whether in ProgramÊ workshops, in external activities or just talking to an institution member. The insertion of ProgramÊ methodologies was a challenge, since, in addition to leaving their comfort zones because they were immersed in another culture, with a different language, and few volunteers had ever held workshops or had contact with PwD (People with Disabilities). We also invite volunteers to reflect on the power of digital education and culture in the lives of people with intellectual disabilities for a more just and equal world.
Playful-Interactive Activity - Cultural Fair
hanks to the cultural exchange between the acting countries in Vacations project, the volunteers held a Culture Fair about their country or state (Brazil). They brought objects, flags, games, typical foods, produced models about their territories and a presentation with photos, videos and music. Each country was represented by a “stand”, decorated with the colors of the respective countries and with elements that refer to their cultures. In a circuit format, teachers and students were able to learn a little more about each country and, later, students were divided into groups to produce material (posters, paintings, writings, etc.) with what they’ve learned and liked more about the countries.
Such actions were extremely important for the development of skills such as leadership, initiative, teamwork, engagement, decision making and awareness, since they left their comfort zones and spurred new actions, always with moderation and assistance from ASID Brasil and Instituto Conhecimento para Todos as a way to empower and assist them in any difficulties that might arise.
Interaction with students and employees of the institution
The interaction with CENHA students and educators was extremely rich. The volunteers performed recreational-interactive activities that stimulate social and cultural contact between individuals as described below:
- Kitchen workshop: creation of two recipes (cheese bread and Argentine pancake) between students and volunteers; Games between students and volunteers (dare or double dare, karaoke, etc.)
- Sports activities circuit;
- Celebration parties between educators, students and volunteers
As a final action, the volunteers held the Cultural Fair in order to bring a little of their country to Brazil. The break moments between activities were also of extreme interaction between the Institution and the volunteers, so that all members of the school community were somehow impacted by the presence of the volunteers. Many created bonds of friendship with some of the students and teachers and certainly left this experience much more connected with the people with intellectual disabilities cause.
In addition, the volunteers had the opportunity to watch a play by the students, the Biocenha Project. The play told the narrative of 5 friends who, when assembling a time machine, return in the past in times that range from prehistory, Roman period, Industrial Revolution to the future with technological adventures.
An incredible experience, for Fundação Telefônica, ASID, programÊ, educators and the center. We have felt the participation in the project at every moment and it has been very enriching for us.FERNANDO VILAR, VOLUNTEER FROM SPAIN.
- 15 Educators trained in ProgramaÊ workshops
- 13 Volunteers
- 9.5 Volunteer Satisfaction
- 1.040 hours of volunteering
For the first time in the history of Vacations, an edition will follow the results after the project through Impact Measurement.
The Impact Measurement aims to follow, to interpret and to evaluate the impacts that certain social action has in territory. For this, the methodology uses some measurement metrics, such as result indicators that are divided between activity, output (immediate effect), outcome (medium term effect) and impact this last one being the primary focus in this report.
For this, we created two indicators with a focus on the results of the project by the scope of people with disabilities and volunteers.
- Problem: the lack of access and awareness about the use of technology in the daily life of people with disabilities;
- Solution: the technology being used safely and facilitating learning for people with disabilities, increasing individual autonomy; and
- Impact: more empowered organizations regarding the use of technology and the insertion of new tools based on ProgramaÊ; and the autonomy development, skills and abilities of teachers, students and volunteers.
Inclusive Profile Level
To measure this indicator, a questionnaire was applied at the beginning of the project in order to understand the level of volunteers’ knowledge about the cause of the people with disabilities. For that, 10 questions were answered, including open and multiple-choice questions that will be reapplied.
PwD Learning Level
The purpose of this indicator is to measure how ProgramaÊ workshops were crucial for the development of people with disabilities in the classroom, in an attempt to understand whether the concepts of Computational Thinking were absorbed. To this end, interventions will be carried out over these 06 months between ASID and the Instituto Conhecimento para Todos, so that teachers get to know more about the tools of ProgramaÊ for insertion in daily life.
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