The StoryPod is a great way to engage children without the use of screens, while providing a tactile sensory experience that children lack when playing on a tablet. Its engaging nature allows children to be autonomous and explore different stories even if their parents are busy at work. Although primarily designed for storytelling, this concept has great potential in the space of distance-learning, especially for young children. Students can have “crafties” that are each associated with a different subject (math, reading, social studies) that prompt some sort of lesson (perhaps going beyond soley audio) that the teacher has programmed for the day. This would put the power in the student’s hands of how they want to work throughout the day and start them on their path to being an independent learner.
Sheth, Sarangg. “This Smart Speaker is All Set to be Your Child’s First Bedtime Podcast-Player.” Yanko Design, 4 July 2020, https://www.yankodesign.com/2020/07/04/this-smart-speaker-is-all-set-to-be-your-childs-first-bedtime-podcast-player/
“Meet the StoryPod. Part smart-speaker, part plush-toy collection, the StoryPod is all about engaging a child without relying on screens. Designed to be the child’s first introduction to the world of podcasts, the StoryPod comes with two innovative components that help entertain and educate children. The hub of the StoryPod experience is its smart speaker, a small-yet-powerful audio device that plays back stories, music, and reads out fun facts to help educate children in a fun way. The HomePod-shaped speaker’s colorful design makes it instantly appealing to children, and an intuitive UI helps kids navigate the speaker’s features without the use (or the need) of a display.
“The StoryPod’s catalog of stories, songs, and educational tales manifests itself in a series of plush toys called the Crafties. Designed to provide a strong visual element to the StoryPod’s audio experiences, each Crafties plush comes with its unique character design and story, which plays through when the character is placed on top of the StoryPod. It’s sort of the equivalent of placing a record on a turntable… except instead of a record, you’ve got a plush toy which you place on top of the StoryPod to play its specific audio file . NFC-chips on the base of each Crafties toy help the StoryPod recognize the plush that’s placed on top, allowing you to play as many as 300 audio tracks from 30 different Crafties plush toys.
“StoryPod’s collection of tracks come in both English and Spanish, helping kids stay engaged while building their foundations of language and cognition. Aside from being your child’s first introduction to smart-speakers and to podcasts, the StoryPod offers the ability to teach children too, with a series story and activity books as well as games that help the child learn and grow while having fun, all while limiting their exposure to screens. Not to mention the adorable toy-collection that kids get to play with too!