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Sonique - Sonique is a sound exploration toy for children that allows them to learn about sound through the manipulation of physical elements. The different modules, represented by the different shapes and colours, allow the sound produced to vary in pitch, timbre and amplitude. Through playing, children are not only able to learn about sound but also boost their sensory perception and sensitivity to the world around them.
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Research - Design Brief:
Enhancing the sound exploration experience for children 6-9 years old through the physicalising of sound and at the same time, boosting their sensory perception and sensitivity to the physical world around them.
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User Testing - Initial - The concept of modular building sound pipes was tested out on a group of kindergarten kids using PVC pipes as mock-ups.
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User Testing - Solo Play - The mock-ups were improved on after the last testing. The next user testing was carried out on a primary school kid.
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User Testing - Communal Play 1 - The concept was then tested out on a group of primary school children at a child care centre.
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User Testing - Communal Play 2 - Testing was done on the same group of kids. In this session, different modules were in different colours, to increase playability.
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Details - Different components are in different colours:
- mouthpieces of 8 different colours, to allow for play of up to 8 children
- straight modules of 4 different lengths
- curved modules of 4 different lengths, corresponding to the straight modules
- connectors
- amplifying cone
- sliding tube
- flexible bendy tube
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Usage - Modules of different lengths will give sounds of different pitches.
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Usage - - Attaching the cone amplifies the sound
- Sliding the tube up and down changes the pitches of the sound due to the varying lengths of the pipe.
- Twisting and bending the flexible tube distorts the sound
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Usage - Combining the modules in different configurations will give the notes of the C Major scale, enabling a group of kids to play a song, with each of them playing a different note.
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Usage - Whether it is combining different modules to test what kind of sounds it will produce, or building something and playing it together with a friend, endless possibilities abound with children coming up with their play methods.

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