Helping Children Develop Life Skills With Technology

Smart-home technology is not just for adults. Smart-home technology helps provide support for growing children and their families.

As children prepare to transition into adulthood and community-based living, smart-home technology can assist them in developing independent living skills. These assistive systems help children learn essential independent living skills while keeping them safe.

Janet Smith, mother of Anissa, a teenager with developmental disabilities says “The technology has been such a blessing. As a single parent, it was difficult for me to monitor Anissa round the clock. Now I can be on the opposite side of the house from Anissa and know if she goes into the kitchen or leaves the house in search of food.”


Meet Anissa

Just like any other teenager, Anissa wants more independence in her home and the community. With her diagnoses of Prader-Willi syndrome and developmental disabilities, Anissa requires intensive monitoring to keep her safe and healthy.

When Anissa’s mother first contacted SimplyHome, she was supervising Anissa around the clock so that Anissa didn’t overeat or leave their home in search of food.

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Anissa spent six months at a Prader-Willi treatment facility where she was taught many life skills to help her manage her behavior and weight. When Anissa returned home from the treatment facility, her mother and her care coordinator contacted SimplyHome to find ways to help Anissa.

Through SimplyHome’s assessment, Janet determined that door sensors, a bed pressure pad, and several motion sensors would give her the peace of mind necessary to support Anissa’s increasing level of independence.

The system’s sensor-based technology sends both alerts to Janet’s cell phone and gives audible notifications in the home.

Anissa, Her Family & Enabling Tech

Anissa learned fast that when the system created an alert, her family would come and check on her. As a result, Anissa learned to change her behaviors, such as returning to bed when need to and not leaving home without supervision.

Anissa’s mother also found that with SimplyHome’s enabling technology, their family no longer has to stay up and monitor Anissa all night, allowing Anissa’s mother to return to work.

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For Anissa to be more independent, her family want to teach her skills regarding:

• Self-control related to eating outside of mealtime routines

• Staying upstairs at night

• Visiting relatives across the street by herself

Anissa’s system was designed to include motion sensors, a bed pressure pad and door sensors to:

• Detect motion in areas of the home after school and at night

• Help prevent ingress and egress during the night

• Alert her and her family if she hasn’t returned to bed at night

The SimplyHome technology sequences activate only at certain times of day:

• When Anissa is home

• When Anissa needs a “teachable moment” to address or re-direct her behaviors

• When Anissa’s safety requires natural support from family

Focusing on Anissa's future and her success as an independent adult, her family, still knows she is a teenager.

However, as Anissa's mother, Janet says “We know we are not going to be around forever. If we don't start supporting Anissa's independence now, then she won't have as many choices when she's an adult."

To learn more about the SimplyHome system and how it can help children develop independent living skills contact AdaptMy today.

andy maddux