A case study of aided story telling : Comparing the Step-by-Step™ with the How Was School Today Prototype
The main purpose of this study was to compare how the Step-by-Step™ (S-b-S) and the newly developed How Was School Today (HWST) prototype can support participation in narrative activities for a 10-year-old boy with complex communication needs (CCN) when he interacts with two typically developed peers. The researchers wanted to find out how the use of the different communication aids affected interaction. The S-b-S is a low technology communication device with a voice recording function. The HWST prototype is a simulation of the HWST system, which is a high technology system that automatically collects information and creates stories about what the user has done in school. The researchers focused on different aspects of gaze and questions as vital communicative practices for the boy‟s involvement in the interaction, and hence, thestory telling activity. The data was analysed mainly qualitatively with conversation analysis (CA). A descriptive quantitative analysis was also developed. The results indicate that the HWST prototype provides a framework for establishment of joint orientation towards the prototype and questions about it. The S-b-S on the other hand creates a context in which it is easier to establish eye contact. There is an uneven distribution of questions with a much higher frequency in the session where the HWST prototype was used. There are not many studies on narrative ability in children with CCN together with peers. Future research on shared stories in natural environments is suggested.
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