Technology Helps Non-Verbal Kids Make ‘Star Wars’ Musical



There seems to be no end to the ways music and technology can help people.


The musical, called The Food Wars, uses the storyline of Star Wars with good and bad foods in a battle. To give a taste of the humor on the show, Luke Cauliflower is the good guy while Darth Vurgar is the baddie!


There are ten pupils involved in it, including 14-year-old Jessica Vasile as Yo Gurt and 13-year-old Lee Gibson — both of whom are non-verbal.


To enable the non-verbal pupils to communicate, a Voice Output Communication Device (VOCA) is used.


It’s an electronic device that has the power to ‘speak’ for the pupil. It also helps to improve the quality of the child’s life and can help them to communicate with others. iPads are also used.


A program called Snap and Core, which is an assistive communication aid that enables the pupils to voice their thoughts and communicate with others, is used.


Using touch screen, eye gaze or a mouse pad, the pupils can click on symbols. Once the symbol is pressed, the program will speak the word.


There are different voice options for the vocal output. Within Snap and Core, teachers and parents can customize the program to react to suit the pupil’s needs. Sentences can be programmed in to help pupils speed up the process when applicable.


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