It all started from an English test during which my autistic student couldn't match the smiley with the correct emotion. He is listed as "high functioning" in the autism spectrum, but the covid lockdowns and isolation increased his difficulties regarding social interactions. So I thought about a project in which he could work on it with his classmates, even if we were stuck in our homes.
The child in question developed an higher sense of understanding others' emotions, but most of all he began collaborating actively with his classmates, not avoiding social interactions or feeling not at ease, as before.
The core of the project was building a website (using Sites by Google Workspace) and an application (using App Lab at Code.org). The site was used as a kind of diary on which children explained with their own words how a certain emotion made them feel using metaphors, colours, sounds, or whatever they felt like using.
The App was an interactive game where the children helped a monster understand its emotions and then they explained how they experienced that same emotion in their daily lives. During the project we used music, especially opera ("The Magpie" by Rossini, our fellow citizen), in which we role-played into the characters' emotions; we learnt expressive reading and recorded a podcast of stories about emotions.
We still haven't published the app for google play and Apple Store, but we let all the children in our school play with it and tried to understand its strengths and weak points. The children costantly want to add details and as they grow up the depth and complexity of the emotions they feel have a mirror in their site and a costant upgrade in their app. They've come up with new games and activities to help children with their "load of emotions", as they pointed out. Children of other classes and age played with the app and used our "sensitive room", a room we created to express ourselves every time we felt overwhelmed or couldn't control strong feelings.
You can see our site here https://sites.google.com/icolivieripesaro.edu.it/esploratoridiemozioni/home-page
and play with our app here https://sites.google.com/icolivieripesaro.edu.it/esploratoridiemozioni/how-are-you?authuser=0
My email for further information: email@example.com
We're currently translating our site in English.