DrumBall (patent pending) is an embodied learning environment designed to allow drum patterns to be turned into and used as letters, words and phrases. Children as young as 3 have used it to practice a wide range of key literacy skills, from letter naming to word spelling.
The Drumball meets the need for a new kind of embodied learning, one that leverages the communicative and health benefits of drumming.
Developed by researchers spanning music, education and design, it enables people of all ages with a wide range of disabilities to use accessible, expressive drum patterns for multimodal verbal communication.
The Alphariddims code is easy to learn. We designed it to foster early literacy learning via rhythmic communication by offering a tight match between the way early learners use speech and gesture to produce meaning and how they can express those ideas through rhythm. And our online platform supports children in their development through four levels (sounds, letters, words and phrases) as they learn to read, compose and listen to drum texts.
The purpose of the Drumball study is to understand the implications of rhythmic communication technologies as learning tools for early literacy that provide multimodal feedback that children can manipulate through hand-drumming (letters, words, phrases). We want to gain useful feedback on whether children can learn a digital drum language grammar and what the teaching and learning applications would look like.
The Urban Griot family workshop is a STEAM playground for early literacy facilitated through an embodied mode of learning that blends voice, rhythm and movement with computer media interaction. Children use the Drumball technology and Alphariddims code to learn the alphabet, explore new vocabulary words and create their own stage performances.
RSVP here to reserve your spot(s) (limited space per session).
Pierre is a doctoral candidate at UC Berkley's Graduate School of Education and the inventor of the Drumball.
His research looks at how embodied, multimodal technologies which are grounded in the historical and cultural context of under-represented students, can be used to help open new pathways to literacy for all children.
Angela is a practicing artist and designer researching how interfaces can enhance collocated collaboration.
Her current focus is developing interfaces that enable parents to become better storytellers to young children.
She is interested in building sensorial interfaces and storytelling experiences that help people increase their sense of common ground.
Arvind is a User Interface and User Experience Designer with 19+ years of industry experience in enterprise, social, and consumer apps, SAAS products, and design education.