Dual language resources for bilingual children and parents
and for the multi-lingual classroom
Strategic Partnerships are a key asset to our company. We have loyal partners in our supply lines as well as upstream towards customers. This enables us to rachet up our R&D efforts so that individual partners' technical competencies are always grounded to customers needs and aspirations. We have efficient and innovative printers in UK who print 90% of our resources and with our distributors, we assist them in building or adapting their marketing instruments, such as websites, promotions and product development.
One of the key features of our mission is to collaborate with external organisations (Charities, Not For Profit organisations as well as Corporations) who have all found ways of bringing TalkingPEN technology into the work that they do.
Listed below are our current partners:
In partnership with the Royal National Institute for the Blind, RNIB UK, we pioneered this award-winning, best-selling product. PENFriend has been sold to the blind and partially sighted in the UK, the USA and Europe as an essential labelling device. An important, in fact vital, issue with blind people is a strong desire not to be a burden to others and always calling for their assistance. PENfriend has been a liberating factor.
No longer do blind people have to ask fo help in finding the right CD or the can of tomatos.
This has been so appreciated that PENfriend won UK's 2009 Enable Award for 'the technology that changed lives'. In 2010 it won Canada's equivalent award too.
With the growing range of special easy-to-peel sticker packs (set A to set H so far), users can over 2000 individual sticky label which can record their voice describing anything: addresses, telephone numbers, cans of foods, diaries, CDs.... A video introduction can be viewed by clicking here or just follow this link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ePE0-U73Ajc
We are the UK partner in this transnational project including universities and education organisations in Germany, Italy, Latvia, Spain and the Netherlands. There is a trajectory in education philosophy which is along the following lines: in the past teachers taught and children obeyed. Next the focus switched to teachers working towards helping children to learn and understanding the learning process.
In the near future, especially for children in the West, the focus will be on thinking skills; teachers using their expertise in helping children to develop clearly defined thinking tools. The PASS project is the pre-cursor to this process in schools. Using parents in everyday situations, the PASS project will develop resources that will help children to acquire several thinking skills and tools in order that they acquire, in this project, the ability to speak a second language.
The project targets children 4 to 6 and will take 2 years to complete. A key philosophy or theoretical framework underlying the resources is the creative toolkit commonly called TRIZ. TRIZ, "The Theory of Inventive Problem Solving", is the methodology developed by a Russian enginneer who concluded that "creativity is something not inspired but something that can be structured." Although used extensively in solving engineering problems, this PASS project will look at how to use TRIZ in addressing language learning problems.
You can visit the PASS Project website (currently under development) here. This project counts with the support of the Lifelong Learning Programme of the European Union.
BRISTOL CITY MUSEUM AUDIO GUIDE
TalkingPEN Publications has partnered with Bristol Museum, enabling blind visitors to find out about many historic artifacts for the time. Objects in the Egypt exhibitions ast the museum have been given stickers with audio descriptions stored on PENFriends.
It is the first time athat the musemum has provided Audio interpretation and the first time PENFriend has been used to improve access for visually impaired people in a museum or heritage setting.
"For visually impaired people, they just walk round museums adn it's jus one glass case after another. This really brought it to life. We knew what we were looking at, we knew the hitory of the items and how old they were and what they were used for. All things that we had no idea of before." Jennifer Stirratt, registered blind person.
We are currently developing similar projects with The National Trust.
TED HUGHES POETRY TRAIL AUDIO
TalkingPEN Publications worked with Stover Country Park – a Site of Special Scientific Interest and a Local Nature Reserve that includes the Ted Hughes Poetry Trail. Using the TalkingPEN, they designed an audio pack for those who have a visual impairment and wish to enjoy the Ted Hughes Poetry Trail. Next to each title and poem on the sheet are soundspots for the TalkingPEN to play back the relevant recording. The poems in the pack were recorded by the nature poet Alice Oswald.
PULSE, SOUTH ASIAN DANCE AND MUSIC
Pulse is perhaps the world's first Arts Magazine which is sound enabled. This is a quarterly magazine on Indian Dance and Music practiced and performed in the world outside India. Publised by charity Kadam in UK, we have worked closely in providing a quarterly magnificent in the quality of its photographs and writing. Add sound and open the page on "Understanding Ragas". With TalkingPEN you can hear the differences and progressions that the author is writing about. You can listen to the music in dance performances, as well as previews of forthcoming CDs.
OTHER MANTRA LINGUA DIVISIONS
BirdVoice: uses the TalkingPEN technology to enable bird lovers to recognise and record different species in the UK and abroad. By using the birdcaller software, users can transfer songs and calls from CDs that they have purchased onto sticky labels which would then be used to sound-enable any specialist book. www.birdvoice.net
Museums and Trails: The discovery pen kit enables small to medium-sized museums and heritage houses to quickly create tours at low costs. With the discoveryLINK software, museums will be able to utilise one of Mantra Lingua's key assets which is translation and narration in over 50 languages. In this area we have partnered with Discovery Tours in the USA www.discoverypen.co.uk www.discoverypen.com