650 million people worldwide face some “barriers” in their daily lives preventing them from learning and communicating through reading, writing, or speaking. In Portugal we talk about 1.7 million of people. We believe that all children should have equal learning opportunities and communicate without barriers, in a lesser restrictive environment. Only then we’ll have a more inclusive education.
EKUI is a Universal Design methodology for learning the alphabet. It uses visual clues (alphabet of Sign Language), phonoarticulatory clues (alphabet of sounds), and sensory clues (Braille) to enhance learning and communication for all learners, leaving no one behind. It is, therefore, more inclusive and accessible to all. To work the methodology, we use several materials (books, cards) in physical and digital (app) versions. In all materials, each letter has 4 forms of representation and expression: the graphic; the letter in Braille, the alphabet of Sign Language, and the phonetic alphabet (speech sounds). We train parents and professionals to implement the methodology. Afterwards, we provide mentoring in schools and online, and we evaluate the impact through questionnaires validated by universities (pre and post intervention, with control groups). EKUI is committed to preventive intervention to identify abnormal situations early on, before they become a problem in learning.
After 6 years of implementation, from 2015 to 2022, EKUI has reached more than 600 classes in Portugal and 12 classes in several countries. We trained 32,000 parents and teachers and therapists; we worked directly with 13,343 children and youth from 458 cities in Portugal and 12 in the world. At this moment we are a community of 200,000 people, including some migrant and emigrant communities.
We are scaling through a digital platform (in Portuguese and English), where we have provided training and materials with universal design, an App and a manual of use of the EKUI methodology.
We want to continue to deliver EKUI in more schools in Portugal and in the world!
Access the platform (EKUI.pt) and sign up for our trainings. You must do because: Impact evaluation has shown that professionals change their teaching practices. Children increased their ability to learn letters, developed phonetic skills and improved empathetic attitudes. EKUI has been considered an inclusive and very effective tool by the educational community, working on empathy-based learning.