This presentation is focused on the emotional and social needs of children and youth with regards to the global pandemic. Educational platforms and counselling processes are adapting, and the use of digital communication games will be presented with strategies for using the communication games in video conferencing and in classrooms. The framework for discussing the impact of the pandemic, will be a model of reframing burnout, crisis and emotional overwhelm as a stage in building emotional resiliency.
The Auxilium Horizon suite of games are designed to address and engage students in building the core competencies of the BC Curriculum in the areas of communication, thinking, personal and social skills. As the BC curriculum overview states “Today’s technology enables classrooms, communities, and experts around the world to share digitally in a learning experience, wherever they may be” (2019). The games provide a focus of self-reflective communication with listening and speaking, promoting emotional awareness, and building skills in social well-being. The games provide an engaging way to practice skills in valuing diversity and promoting “understanding of others and respect for all” (BC Curriculum overview, 2019).
The feeling games serve to increase emotional self-awareness and provide opportunity for personal storytelling. Personal and social competency is the set of abilities that relate to students' identity in the world, both as individuals and as members of their community and society. The Hopscotch game has many cards to promote discussion regarding feelings and brainstorming potential responses to challenging social situations. We are developing a new set for the pandemic. The citizenship and self-esteem games support the development of thoughtful communication and critical thinking. The suite of games is designed to develop and practice core competencies of communication and social skills.
Monica Carpendale, BFA, DVATI, RCAT, HLM, BCATR, art therapist, founder and academic dean of the Kutenai Art Therapy Institute, developed the original Blue Heron Communication Tools as a series of 9 board games with Blake Parker. She has over 35 years of teaching, supervising and doing art and play therapy. She is the author of Essence and Praxis in the Art Therapy Studio (2009), Traveler's Guide to Art Therapy Supervision (2011) and the Geography of Art Therapy and Dream work (2020).
Jason Carter is a computer programmer with some 30 years of experience, particularly working in the fields of imaging and video. A professional developer with a reputation for detail his technical interests include neural networks, AI and logic programming. Jason is to be Auxilium’s Technical Lead and developer of the digital content.