How are technologies used in practice? At the Children Care Centre, Lillelunden, in Odense the Fitlight technology is used, to get more physical activity and movement into the children’s everyday life, the technology help children to develop social relationships, understand the concept of rules and train their motor co-ordination.
The FitLight Trainer test project started when the company behind the technology addressed Centre for Welfare technology – Odense Municipality’s entrances for technology-companies. FitLight had an enquiry regarding test of the FitLight Trainer within the elderly and disabled area. Odense municipality’s different departments assessed the FitLight technology, which showed that the day-care area had the biggest interest in the project. The Children Care Centre, Lillelunden in Odense is therefore testing the FitLight technology. FitLight is a flexible and wireless lighting system with eight lamps, which can be coded in six different colours, with different time intervals. The shining light turns off when you touch the surface. FitLight provides many opportunities for different games and activities, and to constantly find and develop new games. The picture illustrate a modern version of “Catch the tail”.
Technology which creates value
The Children Care Centre, Lillelunden has a clear physical profile, where FitLight can be used to create new activities, which are both fun, development-oriented, cognitively stimulating and inclusive.
“The lights on the FitLight device, is a motivation factor for the children, and provide new opportunities for inspiring games, for the children” says pedagogue Brian Henriksen, and continues: “Motor skills can also be used in a fun way to train the older children, to prepare them for what is expected of them when they begin school. For example, if I say ‘jump on one leg over to the wall’, they do not find this exciting or fun, but if it is a game where they have to jump on one leg and press the lamp, then it is suddenly fun – and it’s motor instructive”.
It is not that difficult
The technology is simple, easy to use for both teachers and children. “It is not that difficult! It’s fun … it’s fun to touch the FitLight” shouts Camilla 5 years, while she enthusiastically runs around to press the blinking blue lights, because that is her group colour. “Here is a red one!” She shouts to another group, who rush over to press the lamp. Everyone has a role, and everyone cooperates when it comes to hit FitLight lights as soon as it shines.
“The children have great teamwork across the groups” says Brian, and underlines the value in relation to the cooperation: “This is where, I really see the difference. I find that they are very good at giving each other space. In relation to inclusion, FitLight is very good, because everybody takes part in the game. Everyone has a role and see him- or herself as valuable. They get a sense of community in the games. I really hope that FitLight gain currency because it has so many possibilities.”
The purpose with the trial of FitLight is precisely to assess the potential for penetration of the technology. The specialized field of children, with physical and mental disabilities, also tests Fitlight, and staff from both areas will evaluate the FitLight technology in early December. The knowledge gained from the project will be passed on to the children- and youth areas, but Centre for Welfare Technology will likewise take notice of the knowledge in order to assess the potential of the technology. E.g. in proportion to the dementia area and adults with disabilities.