A girl uses Kaligo Image Credit: Supplied

Child see, child do….and in so doing, a child learns. How to speak, how to read and write, how to be a contributing member of society.

Because of the novel coronavirus, called COVID-19, UAE schools and nurseries have been shut, interfering with the process of learning for the next four weeks. A number of solutions however have been found – apps and programmes that can help teachers and students interact as well as ways to make project-based teaching more viable.

One such app, for children as young as three and on up to eight, is called Kaligo. The handwriting application, which has already been deployed in healthier times, is being made available to children in the UAE for the next two months for free, to stem any learning loss that might occur at this time. “Kaligo is a handwriting application based on AI engine and the idea is we have a number of exercises straight through from tracing lines for younger kids to fine motor skills, pencil pressure – how much pressure kids put on the pencil and how they hold the pencil; important for muscle memory – capital letters, lower case, pre-cursive and cursive,” explains Faisal Hamid, Director of Kaligo.

How it works

The AI engine analyses what the child produces with the three criteria: shape, direction, order. It gives instant feedback. If something is incorrect, it makes the child reproduce and practice the correct way of writing it.

Who is it for?

Children aged 3 to 8.

Which languages does it work in?

French and English.

What equipment do you need?

“For younger kids – those who are doing tracing lines using a finger is actually perfectly fine. Even the letters, cursive. A tablet is obviously needed – so it’s available on both iOs and Android. And a stylus is the optimal way of using it,” says Hamid.

How long will it stay free for?

“We’ve done it for two months rather than four weeks, so they can use it during Ramadan as well. Parents can download it from the app store or the Google play store. Normally there’s a fee but we are taking the price off so now when children are home, they can practice their handwriting and easy exercises,” he explains.