by Amy Packham on Huffington Post Online:
A mum has created an app that encourages kids to channel their imagination into creative writing, after she found her son struggled to do so.
Amanda Jane Duncan’s 12-year-old son Josh is left-handed and he found handwriting difficult. Due to this, she found she developed a tendency to write for him.
But she still wanted Josh to enjoy the creative process, so started to use visual techniques to help him form an interest in stories. It was something he enjoyed doing and the images helped broaden his vocabulary.
After seeing how much it benefitted her son, Duncan decided she wanted to make the resource available to other children who may also be struggling.
She began creating an image bank for what would become Scribeasy – an app that helps children compose their stories with images before writing them.
“I was compelled to scale and grow it for the children who might otherwise become locked out of life-long opportunities because they lack confidence in writing and articulating their feelings,” the 53-year-old from Dagenham told HuffPost UK.
To form the image bank, Duncan walked for miles and took photos of what she saw. Each night she cut out the elements from the pictures and used these to help her son form stories using his imagination.
She read about the benefits of visual learning (images have been shown to improve learning by up to 400%) and wanted to use this as the basis of her app.
“Ultimately I wanted to offer children and educators a remarkable range and a resource enabling storytelling outcomes of the best quality,” she said.
The idea was simple: To make writing more inclusive by adding fun, adventure and creativity.