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Down's Syndrome
Special education specialists can now serve to improve the language abilities of children with Down syndrome thanks to a software program created by the Community Computers Centers in Baragua, Cuba.

After a year of work, a team made up of two technicians from that center and the staff of the Center for Diagnosis and Orientation (CDO in Spanish) created the program named Communicate. It is thought to make the work of the speech therapists easier in assisting young people with communication disabilities.

Yiudmila Marrero Mane, the coordinator of the work team, explained that the software was used with six children who have Down syndrome in that town. The new technique resulted in considerable improvements among 60 percentage of the youth, who were better able to articulate speech.

The students, between six and nine years old, had to interact with seven levels or activities in which they had to identify objects, look for specific images inside a group, and recognize home chores based on what they saw on the computer, among other actions.

Comunicate was designed as a tool for speech therapists to meet the needs of the local Down syndrome community. It allows teachers to create a data base for each student and to monitor their individual progress.

The program is currently used with the students at the Mariana Grajales special school who suffer diverse pathologies which influence the mental difficulty.

Source: Juventud Rebelde

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