Thursday, February 4, 2010

Gadgets & Gizmos, Part 4: A Desk Especially for Ben

Several years ago, Ben received a touch screen monitor from an assistive technology organization. Ben found ways to take apart the computer, eat the wires and throw the very light monitor onto the floor. When we tried the programs with Ben, his focus was more on how to eat, taste and destroy the components of the computer, rather than on the actual activity.

After looking for a desk that would serve Ben's needs and not finding one within our budget, I asked my husband's father if he would consider building one. Always up for a construction challenge and helping his grandson, he said yes, without really knowing what he was getting himself into.

We emailed back and forth drawings and designs and finally came up with something we thought would work now and grow with Ben as he got taller.

With the help of his long-time friend and his woodworking workshop, Ben's grandpa built an impressive desk.

The desk features a locked cabinet for storage.

Ben is able to get in and out of the seat easily, but it also makes him work his muscles when sitting. He cannot slouch because there is no back to the chair.

The computer itself is housed inside a locked cabinet. It has ventilation on both sides so that the temperature does not get too hot inside the cabinet. Incidentally, a new computer was paid for by funding through First in Families since the last one was in parts.

The touch screen monitor is locked into place behind a wooden frame. It cannot be removed by any ingenious children, and some very smart adults.

I would be happy to provide any information on how this was built if anyone has an interest in making one for their child. We have happily used it for over one year and are still thrilled by it!

Disclaimer: The equipment and tools I talk about in "Gadgets & Gizmos" is not sponsored by any company. This is not an advertisement for any product.

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