Lab RA Noah Kenneally 2011 recipient URO Scholarship

June 26th, 2012 by Jason

Noah Kenneally, a 2011 recipient of an Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program Award

Noah Kenneally, a 4th year full-time student in the Early Childhood Education program, was one of the recipients of the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Scholars Program, an initiative of the Office of the Vice President of Research and Innovations. For three months, Noah coordinated his own research project, fitting within existing research being done by ECE Faculty Professor Jason Nolan and Alumni Alison Gaston.

Community Living Toronto Early Childhood Services came to the Studio to learn Adaptive Design techniques and provided professional feedback to the workshop curriculum design. Nancy Hendy, Manager of Early Childhood Services is pictured here with Noah, learning how to make a rocker seat.

His project, entitled “Researching Skills Development in Adaptive Design and the Creation of Objects for Children with Disabilities”, involved inquiry into how to best support development of the skills of Adaptive Design. Adaptive Design is a philosophy of inclusion and a suite of skills and techniques used in the creation of “assistive devices” – objects that respond to specific needs and that improve the lives of people (primarily children) with disabilities, allowing them to be more autonomous and independent.

Painting an adaptive design corner seat, or jig. The Studio Interns developed a fruit theme for the seats built last summer – including a pineapple, a kiwi, and a watermelon.

By researching various curricula of experiential learning and hands-on education, Noah was able to explore how combining theoretical and practical knowledge work together to effectively construct meaningful and personal knowledge, skills and learning opportunities.

A fully functioning test cardboard computer keyboard. The different modules test different aspects of the design, but can all be connected to a computer to provide adapted word processing capabilities.

Noah spoke about his project and his URO experience to assembled guests and fellow undergraduate researchers at Celebrating Research Excellence, the URO Scholars Celebration event on October 6th, 2011.

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