More than six million children in the US with nonverbal learning disabilities, autism, Asperger’s syndrome, mood disorders, and ADHD have unique and special educational needs. During developmental years, many find it difficult to communicate emotions such as stress, anxiety, fear, and depression, especially when faced with challenging tasks. When this occurs, frustration may be misunderstood, moods and behaviors become disregulated, and tantrums in the classroom can lower self-esteem. As a result, as of 2012, according to the CDC, 7.5% of US children between ages 6 and 17 were taking medication for “emotional or behavioral difficulties.”
Julie Lockner offers an overview of a project to develop collaboration applications that use wearable device data to improve the ability to develop the best possible care and education plans, addressing the unmet and latent needs of parents, clinicians, and educators of these children. Julie walks you through the platform her team developed based on technology that collects, combines, and analyzes data from wearable devices, input from parents and teachers, and feedback from the affected children themselves. The comprehensive data capture based on the wearable and other ambient information is being used to correlate the environmental factors, physiological reactions, and moods of children. The application learns what signals correlate to changes in the children’s moods and is able to send notifications to parents, educators, and children themselves when their moods and emotions are escalating. With predetermined prompts from the application or input from the child’s support team, the moods can be better managed proactively, avoiding uncontrollable tantrums at home or in the classroom. Julie shares the team’s progress to date and explores some of the early results from their research pilots.
Julie Lockner is cofounder of 17 Minds Corporation, a startup focusing on improving care and education plans for children with special needs. She has held executive roles at InterSystems, Informatica, and EMC and was an analyst at ESG. She was founder and CEO of CentricInfo, a data management consulting firm. Julie holds an MBA from MIT and a BSEEfrom WPI.
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