OSOTA Family Spotlight: Meet The Inventors of PolyBlox!

Polyblox inventors

Let’s take a look!


Polyblox Totems is an early-learning spelling experience. It is a patent-pending set of 14 blocks called “totems” with strategically placed letters in English, American Sign Language, and Braille accompanied by pictures and numbers that correlate.  On the bottom of each totem is a unique geometric shape. The shapes not only help with identifying but they have a special function too. The shapes will work with the mobile app to help children solve trickier words.  The app helps by knowing what totems the learner needs to use to spell the word and lets them know which shapes to grab to have the right totems to figure out the word. It does not give the order to use them in so children use their critical thinking skills to find the right side combinations to spell the word correctly.

The innovative, elegant design allows children to read and experience words in multiple languages at a glance. In addition, future iterations of the totems will include increased challenge levels. The Polyblox website will offer a compendium of activities, created by teachers, parents and specialists for use in the classroom, at home and in practice. The companion apps feature a solutions algorithm to assist with tricky words and to develop a dynamic word bank for clients. For example, an educator can speak a word list into the app and it will provide activities and solutions for use with the totems.

Carolyn is the heart and soul of Polyblox. She’s very creative and never shy when it comes to meeting people! Mark is THE glue of Polyblox. He does everything right the first time. He is the digital design guru that keeps the gears turning and the machine oiled!

For more information about Polyblox, and to support the creative genius of our innovative families, please visit their website www.thepolyblox.com and like their Facebook page Polyblox Totems. They will be offering early-bird specials, posting links from radio interviews, dates for upcoming events and upcoming articles. Also, stay tuned for the July/August edition of Playground Magazine

We give a lot of attention to our scholars who blow us away every day with their talents, gifts, and innovative ideas. And rightly so! But it’s not every day we can celebrate our talented, gifted, and innovative parents. So today is that day! Laresa Tapia, Mark and Carolyn Izzo have really raised the bar on what it means to be creative thinkers and doers. On so many levels these inventive families have modeled what it means to be a part of our One School family by thinking out of the box, and daring greatly.

The idea was born with Enso. I wanted to find a learning toy that taught him in multiple languages, at a glance, that was sensory smart and had a way of delighting and sparking a love for diversity and how differently-abled children learn and navigate the world.
— Laresa, the creative mind behind Polyblox
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