Tracy(Specialist) Makey Makey for Blindness/Autism

Below is Tracy’s project for the Makey Makey Contest. This thread will be used to develop this project during the Makey Makey course Dec 3- Jan 26 2021.
Please feel free to reply to this thread to post progress, to ask questions, or to add input, ideas or suggestions!

Thanks, Zee. I am hoping to use Makey-Makey to help two students in blind: one gifted in music, another one with limited verbal communication.

  1. A basic communication device:
    The device would play sounds when you touch is the building block.
    • An example in the market: Using jewelry works as a basic communication device. There are rings that use wifi to track steps and things. The ring is central. The phrases could be set initially but would be good if a parent or therapist could change them to meet the specific needs of a student or child.
    • It could start very small then build into a much more intricate AAC (Augmentative and alternative communication) device for the nonverbal population someday. Maybe someday they will not need to carry a large AAC device everywhere with them.

  2. A device would help kids blind and with autism interact with people more.
    An example in the market: MIDI controller TouchMe:

  3. A device connecting sounds to come from Alexa or even to a phone through an app or connect to wifi for sending messages from kids otherwise not being able to.

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I am excited to learn at tomorrow’s workshop, hope to get some ideas how to help these two students. Thanks.

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Hi Tracy! Did you know that Playtronica was inspired by Makey Makey! I think you could use Makey Makey as a way to encourage blind or autistic children to interact with people! You can use an application on your laptop called SoundPlant to map keys to specific sound effects! Here is a guide I wrote for mapping sound effects to water:

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I was really inspired by the Vest Buddy kids! Look at how they made a friend a talking device :

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Thanks, Colleen. I will dig into those resources.

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Holiday greeting!
Is it possible to do math like addition, subtraction …for blind using Makey and Makey with Scratch? Thanks.

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@gravescolleen @MMC_Jake any ideas?

Project update:
@gravescolleen, thank you for all the videos, they are very helpful.

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@ZKv, thanks. @gravescolleen @MMC_Jake. I tried to work on math addition questions. I have a few questions:

  1. It seems there are not enough keys (only 12 keys in Makey Makey) to get all the numbers 0-9 and also press keys.
  2. Is there any possibility for voice recognition in Scratch?

Here is a very short of video with a math addition:

Anyway, would you check if I am on the right track? Thanks.

Happy a wonderful 2021 ahead!

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You can remap both headers on the back to get more inputs. You can even remap inputs and make them into numbers!

Here is a remap guide:

I once made a giant calculator you can step on. I’ve been meaning to make a smaller paper version.


Oh! And you can see some cool math ideas students made last year for kindergarteners!


@brentcourson could you or one of your May We Help friends help create Tracey a custom case for the makey makey/a tablet to go inside?

@ZKv we can help with the case. We would just need @zhangcu2 to fill out the request form on the May We Help Website Once the form is submitted, it will be sent to our team in Ann Arbor.

Is there a general design you have in mind?

Thank you so much! Will do.

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@gravescolleen, Colleen, thank you very much. the information you shared was very helpful. I did remapping, and have enough keys now. I am thinking to put braille on the representation of keys and maybe compare the answers from users and MM… More to go. The link is a new short video:

We are looking forward to working with you and are happy to help fabricate whatever you need.


You’re the best Brent! thanks!

@brentcourson, thanks, Brent. I submitted the form. Let me know how I could help with. Appreciate!!!

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@brentcourson, Brent, I just talked to Beau from May We Help. He will pass the information to you. This is wonderful. Thank you!

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