UNICEF Innovation Fund Graduate: Yuudee

Interactive games and animation to improve the language skills of children with autism

Wei Zhang
Guoguo is playing with his father in Aijia Village of Dianjun District,Yichang City
14 June 2019

The UNICEF Innovation Fund is proud to see portfolio member, Yuudee, graduate. They’ve come a long way – from numerous product iterations to deep diving into understanding their ecosystem better, strengthening their business model, and gearing up to take their solution to market. They’re now ready to collaborate at a larger scale – as they find new pathways to work with partners, investors, and the open source community.

Yuudee is an interactive platform that uses games and animation to teach and improve linguistic skills of autistic children. Parents can download Yuudee on both Android and iOS application markets for free.

About 1 in 100 children in China has autism, with different levels of linguistic issues. Children with autism often face challenges in constructing long sentences and mainly use simple words to express their feelings and thoughts. Most parents with autistic children would want their children to be able to receive the support and have tools that can help to improve their skills in language learning. However, Parents face big obstacles and pressures addressing their child’s needs due to the lack of domestic qualified language trainers, associated monetary costs and time constraints.

Solving Linguistic Challenges

Yuudee aims to develop new methods to solve linguistic challenges for children with autism.

Yuudee specifically looked into Noam Chomsky’s generative grammar theory and Steven Pinker’s phrase structure grammar theory when developing the curriculum structure, product interface, and functionality.

Additionally, the features of the platform can be beneficial to study the children's needs and progress in an efficient manner. Recently, we negotiated with highly influential domestic organizations and platforms of the industry about cooperation and publicity, we project to reach more than 10,000 users and have more than half of them as active users in six months after Yuudee is published.


What's Next?

We are evaluating the effectiveness of our design -- to help support this -- our team has designed a data analysis module which analyzes users’ training data to understand the value Yuudee brings. In addition, we use a Preschool Child Development Inventory (PCDI) questionnaire evaluation to analyze the children’s ability to construct sentences. We also use an ABC questionnaire evaluation to analyze areas where Yuudee needs improvement.

Yuudee remains steadfast in creating new methods to solve language barriers for children with autism. With all our code open source on Github, we hope to encourage more peers within the industry to create more effective methods to innovate for children with autism and conquer language barriers in the near future!