Easing Cerebral Palsy: Products

Process

Hayley Zukerberg and 2 OthersJordana Conti
Jesse Roberts
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ITERATION 1:

The basic prototype works in hitting the key and being able to incorporate movement with a spring. The sizing of the box, dowel and spring work well.

Everything about the project could be cleaner overall. The shape and size of many pieces including the button need to be rethought. Another problem was that there was only one spring of its size meaning we needed a new one.

The size and shape of many pieces will change in our next iteration as we also will attempt to layout as many buttons as possible on a keyboard. We will also try to shape a button and eventually 3D print it.

We made these changes because at this stage of our studio our project felt a little clunky, some pieces we felt were unnecessarily large. We knew that everything could be improved by 3D printing them.

 

ITERATION 2:

We have successfully made everything less clunky in rhino. We have improved all pieces of our prototype besides the spring, box and dowel.

Because we now have to use a new spring, the measurements we used to have it fit into our 3D printed pieces in incorrect. Therefore the spring does not fit, and the prototype will not work. Another problem we faced it the sizing of the buttons. Our group had recently decided that we wanted to be able to play every key in an octave compared to our 2 out of 3 previously.

The diameter of the holes in each piece will change in order to to fit the new spring. Our group will also cut each piece making them smaller so we may fit a button onto each key, doing this makes the whole piano playable.

We are making these changes so our final product will work in all aspects we wanted it to originally. Also we decided that if we the user were able to play all keys it would make for a better experience with the product.

 

Final :

Our project works well with measurement and size. All 3 pieces fit correctly together and the springs fit into our pieces perfectly too.

We do not have all notes of the octave from the 3D printer and the dowel pieces are not as precise as the rest of our product.

In the future we could add ways to play chords with one key or bar as well as finishing and creating more octaves so the whole keyboard is adapted.

It will add to our project and make our idea a bit more complex and also give the kids more flexibility to play more notes.

 

 

 

 

 

Final Post

Our groups original idea was to create a type of extension or adaptation of a pianos keyboard that would allow children with CP to this play a pianos music with ease. Most importantly we wanted young kids to have the basic ability to play notes. We designed our project to make the difficult activity of playing the piano more simple. Our group accomplished this by creating buttons that would sit above the small keys. We also made our buttons different sizes in the front and the back rows making it easier to play.  By doing this with the large buttons we have created larger targets and less room for error. 

We faced many problems designing this product, One of our larger issues was deciding how to make an instrument usually played with such precision and accuracy, playable by a child with CP. Another frequent problem we had was dealing with was the sizing and measurement of the button and separate pieces because of how compact and precise a piano keyboard is. Also dealing with the black sharp keys was difficult and got in the way of the measurement for the other keys .

Our project allows kids with cerebral palsy to participate in an everyday activity in which without this product, they would not be able to physically do. This not only makes them feel included in this hobby, but it lets them create something of their own as they do it.

Final

Alea Laidlaw and 4 OthersJoshua Brancazio
Sam Daitzman
Sofia Canale-Parola
Seth Isaacson
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We created a writing and drawing tool for people with cerebral palsy, specifically those who lack fine motor control. We wanted to create a tool that provided stability, resistance, adjustability, ergonomics, and flexible movement. By doing this, we aimed to create a positive experience for the user. Our goal was to create an assistive tool to allow people with CP to artistically express themselves by making drawing and writing easier.

People with more severe cases of cerebral palsy do not have much control over their environments or their lives, as they have to be constantly assisted and guided. By allowing people with CP to draw, they get to have control over a world of their creation, which is empowering, enjoyable, and has therapeutic benefits.

We talked to an expert in pediatric CP to ask how the patients currently draw at the clinic. He said that they typically squeeze paint tubes, and then play with the paint with their hands. While finger painting can be fun and expressive, it lacks precision and the ability to draw lines or letters. Our drawing tool enables the use of pens, pencils, and markers, which kids can use in a more versatile manner, for example, writing their own name.

The drawing tool works by having a 2-axis sliding system that is controlled by the artist’s arm. Attached to the y-axis slider is an ergonomic “mouse” that holds a pencil, pen, or marker. The artist can use larger movements with their entire arm to move the mouse if they lack fine motor skills.

The x-axis works by having two wheels on the top edge of the table and one wheel underneath, providing a stable side-to-side movement. Also on the x-axis are two ball bearings on the end of the two rods, which allow the entire part to move. There is a clamping mechanism that allows the wheel underneath the table to move up and down, which lets the entire tool be used on a table of any thickness.

The y-axis works by having two rods and a cross piece that supports the artist’s wrist. There is a linear bearing on each rod so that the part can move along the rods, and a strap that adjusts to the artist’s wrist for added stability.

The mouse is designed to spread out the artist’s fingers, which is therapeutic as people with CP often have closed hands, and they need to be opened up regularly to stretch their hand muscles. By pushing down on the mouse, the pen, pencil, or marker is pushed onto the drawing surface. The artist can choose his or her medium, as we designed multiple different holders for writing utensils of different sizes. There is a slot in the mouse where these different attachments can be used. The mouse has ball bearings on the bottom so that it can move in any direction.

We feel that our project met its goal, but there is always room for improvement. We had several ideas for how we could improve the design and ideas that could be incorporated. One idea is to add resistance to the sliders in order to reduce hand tremors. We also considered adding a frame around the mouse with a damper system to negate small movements. Finally, we discussed using rubber to give resistance to the ball and linear bearings.

Our assistive drawing and writing tool shows that art can be for everyone, and that people can move beyond their restrictions by having the freedom to express themselves through artistic creation.

Final

Mollie Devins and 2 OthersLaurel Sullivan
Amit Nir
1 / 10

The main idea of our product is to allow kids with and without cerebral palsy to be able to engage with blocks in an educational and enjoyable way. Having magnetic blocks makes the structures more stable which gives them a greater sense of comfort and ability. In addition, the magnet tray permits the kids to play with the blocks in their laps or at a table which is useful for kids in and out of wheelchairs.

We are trying to make playing blocks that kids with cerebral palsy can play with ease. This is beneficial because most current playing blocks are difficult for kids with cerebral palsy to play with due to size, shapes, complexity, etc.

This project is important because it will allow kids with cerebral palsy to play with blocks at ease. They allow kids to grasp onto the blocks without dropping them, and the magnetic aspect of the blocks make it easier for the kids to create a more stable structure. In addition to the fun aspect of the blocks, the blocks teach the kids basic geometry skills and problem solving skills.

 

Process

Mollie Devins and 2 OthersAmit Nir
Laurel Sullivan
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How we got to this Design:

When we began designing our project, a common theme we heard was that children with CP feel different from people without CP and that makes their childhood difficult. When initally creating our toy, we wanted to adapt toys that kids without CP already use, so that it could be used by kids with or without CP. However, after more brainstorming and planning, we decided to create our own toy that children with CP can play with. We then moved into the idea of creating playing blocks. We wanted the blocks to be magnetic because they are more stable and easier to place. The blocks would be stored a magnetic board. We looked up magnet blocks and came across Tegu Magnet Playing Blocks which gave us our inspiration. The magnet playing blocks enables the kids to play with the blocks either at a table or a wheelchair. Additionally, it will make the structures much more stable having both the magnetic board and the magnetic blocks.

 

Materials And Their Use:

In this project we used a various of materials. We used the the 3D printer to create our final blocks. Cardstock to create our prototype blocks. Thick wood to create the tray. Hinges to connect our tray together. Rare Earth magnets to make our blocks magnet. And steel to make the tray have a magnet surface to allow the blocks to stick to tray.

 

To create the pieces for our blocks and tray we used Rhino. We then used the 3D printer and the laser-cutter to create the blocks and the tray.

 

Iteration 1: Block Design

On the first day, we sketched three different block possibilities and created random shapes for each one of them. After starting to create these shapes in Rhino, we shortly realized that what we were doing did not make sense. The size and shape of the blocks were random. This did not work because the blocks did not fit together nicely. As a result, we changed our design of the shapes to be intentional and thought out more precisely. We changed our measurements to fit together cohesively. This meant changing our measurements and dimensions to be multiples and factors of 60mm. We choose 60mm because our cube is a 60mm by 60mm by 60mm. In addition, we figured out that our blocks needed to go together by having ratios. That meant that if we had a cube that is 60mm, 60mm, 60mm, we would create a long rectangle that is 180mm by 30mm. This would allow 3 cube lengths to fit on the long rectangle. Changing the measurements made the blocks cohesive and compact when they come together to be stored in the tray. If there were more time, we would color our blocks. Coloring our blocks would have educational benefactors make the blocks visually pleasing.  

 

Iteration 2: Tray 

For our initial tray design, we wanted a sliding on and off lid to allow the kids to play with the magnet blocks in their laps. However, this design had a major flaw. Where would the blocks go when the kids were not playing with them? As a result, we changed our tray design to mimic the configuration of a laptop. This design allows the kids to open and close the tray and keep the blocks upright as they play with the blocks on the bottom half. So we started designing the tray in Rhino to later laser-cut it out of thick wood. Additionally, we added steel which is a magnet surface to the bottom and top halves of the tray. If we had more, we would have like to make the tray stay at a certain degree angle as the kids were playing with it. Moreover, we would etch the steel to have where the blocks should go when the kids are done playing with it. This also gives an educational purpose because it will make the kids interact with the blocks while creating a puzzle.

 

Iteration 3: 3D Printing the Blocks 

At the beginning of the project we knew that we wanted to 3D print our blocks. We knew we did not have enough time to 3D print all the blocks but did not know how we would show all of our blocks within the tray. When we were making sure we liked the shapes and sizes of the blocks, we prototype one of each out of cardstock. As a result, we decided to create every single block of our set out of cardstock to show all our blocks put together.

 

Before we wanted to print each shape block, we prototyped our cube with the slots for the magnets. After it 3D printed, we realized that the blocks need to be thinner and that we need to make different slots for the magnets because we did not have many of the large magnets and needed them for other shapes as well. So, with our next cube, it was 1mm thinner which made the blocks more magnet. Furthermore, the 3 small magnets on every other side made the cube magnetise differently and stick cohesively.         

 

While creating the blocks for 3D printing. We had to change which magnets would go where because we had to think about how many of each magnet we had. If we had more time, we would make the magnet slots a little bigger and further apart in some of the shapes. This will  make the process of sticking the magnets in the slots much easier because in our current design it is challenging but doable.   

 

Final

Hayley Zukerberg and 2 OthersJordana Conti
Jesse Roberts
1 / 5
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Our groups original idea was to create a type of extension or adaptation of a pianos keyboard that would allow children with CP to this play a pianos music with ease. Most importantly we wanted young kids to have the basic ability to play notes. We designed our project to make the difficult activity of playing the piano more simple. Our group accomplished this by creating buttons that would sit above the small keys. We also made our buttons different sizes in the front and the back rows making it easier to play.  By doing this with the large buttons we have created larger targets and less room for error. 

We faced many problems designing this product, One of our larger issues was decieding how to make an instrument usually played with such precision and accuracy, playable by a child with CP. Another frequent problem we had was dealing with was the sizing and measurement of the button and separate pieces because of how compact and precise a piano keyboard is. Also dealing with the black sharp keys was difficult and got in the way of the measurement for the other keys .

Our project allows kids with cerebral palsy to participate in an everyday activity in which without this product, they would not be able to physically do. This not only makes them feel included in this hobby, but it lets them create something of their own as they do it.

Final Post

Vida Bailey and Lilly Caro
1 / 4
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Main Idea: Our product is a stabalizer for a cane or crutch made specifically for people with Cerebral Palsy (CP). It is an attachment that goes on the bottom of a cane or crutch; when the patient shakes, our design prevents the cane or crutch from collapsing or getting off balance.

Design Problem: With a typical crutch, the bottom has only a single leg that is meant to keep the person stable. This can be difficult with CP because of the jerks and twitches that come with it.  Our attachment has four feet that can bend; when a person gets shaky it keeps the pole and person stable. This stability is caused by springs expanding when pressure is put on the pole, causing the feet to go further apart, making the base wider and more stable. If we were to do another itteration, we would have incoorperated only one spring and made the design sleeker. Additionally, the piece that keeps the legs at an angle aren't strong enough.

Why it is important: Our attachment makes the every day lives of people with CP easier and safer. People with CP will feel safer knowing that if they make an involuntary sudden movement they will remain stable. It also doesn't look that different from crutches with four legs at the bottom that do not move, so they won't feel too abnormal in a group of people.