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IDC Tables of Contents: 03040506070809101112131415

Proceedings of ACM IDC'15: Interaction Design and Children 2015-06-21

Fullname:IDC 2015 Conference on Interaction Design and Children
Editors:Marina Umaschi Bers; Glenda Revelle
Location:Medford, Massachusetts
Dates:2015-Jun-21 to 2015-Jun-24
Publisher:ACM
Standard No:ISBN: 978-1-4503-3590-4; ACM DL: Table of Contents; hcibib: IDC15
Papers:84
Pages:477
Links:Conference Website
  1. Workshops
Designing for youth interpreter professional development: a sociotechnologically-framed participatory design approach BIBAFull-Text 1-10
  Priscilla F. Jimenez Pazmino; Brian Slattery; Leilah Lyons; Benjamin Hunt
Informal science institutions (ISIs) are beginning to adopt mobile technology to support interpreters (docents), but not much is known about how to design these supports. One approach to designing technology for new scenarios is participatory design (PD), where end-users are involved as experts in the task domain who can help envision the application of technology. However, in our context end-users are often youth interpreters who are emerging professionals. This poses a challenge because traditional PD methods trust that the users can represent the task domain. Novice professionals may not yet fully understand the task domain, but eliciting their needs and visions is still important for producing a tool they will find useful. A design approach is needed that captures the requirements for supporting expert task execution as an underlying structure for the tool, while nonetheless eliciting and respecting the special needs of novices. We developed and applied two different framing strategies (one technological, one sociotechnological) to traditional PD methods to help youth non-expert interpreters generate task-relevant design ideas. We report results from using these strategies in an exploratory fashion and discuss opportunities for future research on PD methods that can address the needs of youth as emerging professionals.
HandiMate: exploring a modular robotics kit for animating crafted toys BIBAFull-Text 11-20
  Sang Ho Yoon; Ansh Verma; Kylie Peppler; Karthik Ramani
Building from our previous work we explore HandiMate, a robotics kit which enables users to construct and animate their toys using everyday craft materials [32]. The kit contains eight joint modules, a tablet interface and a glove controller. Unlike popular kits, HandiMate does not rely on manufactured parts to construct the toy. Rather this open ended platform engages users to pursue interest driven activities using everyday objects, such as cardboard, construction paper, and spoons. These crafted parts are then fastened together using Velcro to the joint modules and animated using the glove as the controller. In this paper, we discuss the results from two user studies which were designed to understand the affinity of HandiMate among children. The first study reveals that children rated the HandiMate kit as gender-neutral, appealing equally to both female and male students. The second study discusses the benefits of engaging children in engineering design with HandiMate, which has been observed to bring out children's tacit physics-based engineering knowledge and facilitate learning.
Marker-based augmented reality: instructional-design to improve children interactions with astronomical concepts BIBAFull-Text 21-28
  Stéphanie Fleck; Martin Hachet; J. M. Christian Bastien
This paper presents the instructional-design of an augmented learning environment named AIBLE-HELIOS® that is targeted at teaching astronomy to children. This environment takes benefit of Augmented Reality (AR) and tangible interaction to stimulate an active and learner-centered approach to scientific problem solving. This approach follows the pedagogical principles of the Inquiry-Based Sciences Education (IBSE). Technical specifications and the design of the application have been based on didactical principles. It is intended to children of 8 to 11 years old in formal education. HELIOS was tested in-situ, i.e., in real teaching conditions with pupils (grades 4-5) from two primary schools. This user study confirms the design assumptions that influence children's interaction with contents during sciences courses. The analyses of the children's interactions with the system as well as learning indicate that HELIOS supports children in their investigations. Moreover, it provides some new information on children's interactions possibilities that will be taken into account in future versions. All these parameters contribute to the understanding of the ways through which AR can be used in formal teaching curricula in K-12 schools.
Fishing with friends: using tabletop games to raise environmental awareness in aquariums BIBAFull-Text 29-38
  Sarah D'Angelo; D. Harmon Pollock; Michael Horn
We present the design and evaluation of an exhibit on the consequences of overfishing that we deployed at a local aquarium. The exhibit, Fishing with Friends, is a multiplayer game in which visitors compete to earn money by catching fish. As the game progresses, overzealous fishing results in damage to a simulated ocean ecosystem. Our goal is to encourage visitors to reflect on damage caused by overfishing and discuss strategies to preserve shared ocean resources. Aquariums are leading the effort to inform the general public about issues of marine sustainability. However, it is challenging to make these complex topics engaging and accessible to a diverse audiences in real-world settings. We conducted a study with 523 visitors at the aquarium to evaluate our design. Results from a questionnaire suggest that engagement with Fishing with Friends improved our target audience's awareness of environmental issues compared to those who were not exposed to the game. Our results also highlight challenges of using interactive tabletops displays in crowded and chaotic exhibit halls. On average, 52.6 visitors interacted with the game every hour that the exhibit was on display; this rapid flow limited engagement and presented unique design challenges that we discuss in this paper. Future work will be needed to assess longer term impacts and to compare game play to other forms of interactive and non-interactive interventions.
Maximizing children's opportunities with inclusive play: considerations for interactive technology design BIBAFull-Text 39-48
  Kiley Sobel; Katie O'Leary; Julie A. Kientz
Inclusive play, defined as play among children with and without disabilities, provides learning opportunities that challenge stereotypes, foster strong friendships, and help children develop empathy and other social and emotional skills. Designing technologies to support inclusive play are understudied in Human-Computer Interaction. We synthesized literature, conducted design ethnography in an inclusive classroom, and interviewed and surveyed parents and teachers to explore this problem. Our research contributes an empirical understanding of the current state of inclusive play and a characterization of the design space for interactive technologies that can support children and adults with inclusive play. We identify key facilitators of inclusive play: direct and embedded supports, transparency, adjustability, emphasis on children's interests and strengths, and current technology use. We also describe significant barriers to inclusive play: effort required to facilitate inclusive play, children's preferences, parental inexperience, and inappropriate technology. Through our discussion, we conclude that interactive technologies should be designed to harness the facilitators and help overcome the barriers in order to maximize children's opportunities with inclusive play.
Designing visible engineering: supporting tinkering performances in museums BIBAFull-Text 49-58
  Leilah Lyons; Michael Tissenbaum; Matthew Berland; Rebecca Eydt; Lauren Wielgus; Adam Mechtley
Interactive technologies like multi-touch tables enable museum exhibit designers to support visitors' learning with a wide range of resources (from multimedia to dynamic feedback to the presence of other visitors). Designers must decide, though, how best to align the affordances of these resources with the learning activities they are trying to support [23]. This work examines a multi-touch table exhibit designed to support an activity, tinkering, which has been identified as a form of interaction that may offer special benefits to novices learning about engineering [e.g., 4]. When a learner is tinkering, he or she is engaged in a process of iterative adjustment to a constructed artifact, making use of "just in time" resources and feedback to guide the next steps in their exploration of the problem space. The exhibit studied in this work provided several resources for supporting tinkering, and this paper presents a detailed case showing how these different resources (some technical, some social, and some sociotechnical) were or were not used by learners. A key design goal we identified was the need to transform the tacit engineering practices of visitors into visible engineering performances, such that those performances could serve as "cultural tools" [35] for mediating the learning of other visitors.
BrainQuest: an active smart phone game to enhance executive function BIBAFull-Text 59-68
  Stuart Gray; Judy Robertson; Gnanathusharan Rajendran
Brain Quest is an active smart phone game designed to promote both physical activity and executive function in 10-11 year old children. This paper describes the user centred design process which involved a team of psychologists, HCI experts, physical activity specialists and thirty four children over a period of 18 months. Results of two preliminary studies are promising, suggesting that Brain Quest is enjoyable, promotes moderate physical activity and has the potential to provide cognitive scaffolding of the key executive function (EF) skill of multitasking.
Designing motion-based activities to engage students with autism in classroom settings BIBAFull-Text 69-78
  Arpita Bhattacharya; Mirko Gelsomini; Patricia Pérez-Fuster; Gregory D. Abowd; Agata Rozga
We report on a nine-month-long observational study with teachers and students with autism in a classroom setting. We explore the impact of motion-based activities on students' behavior. In particular, we examine how the playful gaming activity impacted students' engagement, peer-directed social behaviors, and motor skills. We document the effectiveness of a collaborative game in supporting initiation of social activities between peers, and in eliciting novel body movements that students were not observed to produce outside of game play. We further identify the positive impact of game play on overall classroom engagement. This includes an "audience effect" whereby non-playing peers direct initiations to those playing the game and vice versa, and a positive "spillover" effect of the activity on students' social behavior outside of game play. We identify key considerations for designing and deploying motion-based activities for children with autism in a classroom setting.
Designing technology for and with developmentally diverse children: a systematic literature review BIBAFull-Text 79-88
  Peter Börjesson; Wolmet Barendregt; Eva Eriksson; Olof Torgersson
This paper presents the results of a systematic literature review of research papers on the involvement of developmentally diverse children in design. The review shows that there is a growing tendency to include developmentally diverse children in the design process. Compared to other groups of developmentally diverse children, children with high-functioning autism between 8 and 12 years old are the ones that are most often actively involved in the design process. Other groups of children often have a more passive role, being observed, both in the requirements, design and evaluation phase. Working with mixed groups of children, either children with different disabilities, or typically developing children together with developmentally diverse children, also occurs more seldom. Compared to design with typically developing children, adults are involved more intensively in the design, either as users, proxies, experts and/or facilitators. Specific guidelines for how to prepare and perform design sessions with developmentally diverse children often emphasize the need for a coherence of activities, a clear structure in the sessions, verbal as well as textual explanations, and the active participation of caregivers, teachers and therapists. Based on these findings we give several suggestions for further research.
The medium matters: the impact of full-body interaction on the socio-affective aspects of collaboration BIBAFull-Text 89-98
  Laura Malinverni; Narcís Parés Burguès
Despite the increasing interest in embodied interaction for learning, research has not yet provided strong proof of its advantages with respect to other types of interaction, or with respect to other types of pedagogical approaches. In this paper we present two studies aimed at comparing how a collaborative interactive experience based on two different interaction paradigms -- one based on Full-Body Interaction and the other on Desktop computer interaction -- may impact the socio-affective aspects of collaboration as part of a learning process in children. Our results show that Full-Body Interaction had a highly significant impact on how the participating children perceived collaboration in small groups and on how they felt about the other children in the group. This indicates that Full-Body Interaction may be beneficial for supporting the construction of a positive social space for collaborative learning, given its potential to enable the use of embodied resources, which are fundamental for social communication and social cognition.
A case for intergenerational distributed co-design: the online kidsteam example BIBAFull-Text 99-108
  Greg Walsh; Elizabeth Foss
As more children's technologies are designed to be used with a global audience, new tools need to be created to include more children's voices in the design process. However, working with those children who are geographically distributed as design partners is difficult because existing technologies either do not support distributed design, or are not child-friendly. Industries that produce items for children to consume have begun using traditionally academic co-design techniques in order to design new products and experiences for children. As these groups need to reach out to more diverse and global populations, they will begin using technologies that support distributed co-design. As child-computer interaction researchers, we have a duty to understand this concept and identify recommendations for others to use that incorporate the ideals of our field. In order to do this, this paper describes the design process of an online environment to support geographically distributed, intergenerational co-design. Within this environment, children can work together despite differences of time zones, geographic location, or availability. The online environment was deployed for eight weeks during the summer and was modified each week throughout that time to better support the participants. Based on the experiences of participants within the environment, we make suggestions for new technologies including user management tools, creative expression tools, and ad hoc team membership that encourage more voices in the design process.
Touchscreen prompts for preschoolers: designing developmentally appropriate techniques for teaching young children to perform gestures BIBAFull-Text 109-118
  Alexis Hiniker; Kiley Sobel; Sungsoo Ray Hong; Hyewon Suh; India Irish; Daniella Kim; Julie A. Kientz
Though toddlers and preschoolers are regular touchscreen users, relatively little is known about how they learn to perform unfamiliar gestures. In this paper we assess the responses of 34 children, aged 2 to 5, to the most common in-app prompting techniques for eliciting specific gestures. By reviewing 100 touchscreen apps for preschoolers, we determined the types of prompts that children are likely to encounter. We then evaluated their relative effectiveness in teaching children to perform simple gestures. We found that children under 3 were only able to interpret instructions when they came from an adult model, but that children made rapid gains between age 3 and 3-and-a-half, at which point they were able to follow in-app audio instructions and on-screen demonstrations. The common technique of using visual state changes to prompt gestures was ineffective across this age range. Given that prior work in this space has primarily focused on children's fine motor control, our findings point to a need for increased attention to the design of prompts that accommodate children's cognitive development as well.
Using neurofeedback to teach self-regulation to children living in poverty BIBAFull-Text 119-128
  Alissa N. Antle; Leslie Chesick; Aaron Levisohn; Srilekha Kirshnamachari Sridharan; Perry Tan
In this paper we describe a neuro-feedback system and applications we designed and deployed to help vulnerable children at an NGO-funded school, called Nepal House Kaski, in Pokhara, Nepal. The system, called Mind-Full, enables traumatized children to learn and practice self-regulation by playing simple, culturally appropriate games using an EEG headset connected to an interactive tablet. Children can interact with Mind-Full using body actions that may change their physiology and brain states, which are sensed by the EEG headset and used as input to the games. One of the key challenges was to build an application that the children could immediately understand how to use when they are illiterate, don't speak English and have no computer experience. We describe Mind-Full and highlight the design principles we used to meet these constraints. We report on a subset of findings from a 14-week field experiment in which we use a mixed-methods approach to determine if children improved their ability to self-regulate during gameplay as well as in the classroom, playground and in therapy sessions. Findings from quantitative and qualitative assessment measures suggest that the treatment group significantly improved their ability to calm down and focus in a variety of contexts.
Hi-Lo tech games: crafting, coding and collaboration of augmented board games by high school youth BIBAFull-Text 130-139
  Yasmin Kafai; Veena Vasudevan
Most research on game making activities for learning has focused on programming screen-based designs. Only recently has research begun to include the design of tangible interfaces; connecting on-screen programming with hands-on crafting. In this paper, we examine the potential of a workshop that combines the high and low of technology with game design in which teams of high school youth crafted, coded and collaborated on their own augmented board games to highlight intersections between learning programming and making, and creating across digital and tangible modalities. We focused our analysis of students' projects, interactions, and reflections on how young designers conceptualized the integration of screen and board game elements, realized computational concepts and practices in their board game designs and augmentations, and reflected on their game design experience connecting crafting and coding. In the discussion, we review how the expansion of game making activities can create new opportunities for interaction design and research.
Understanding the lived experience of adolescents with type 1 diabetes: opportunities for design BIBAFull-Text 140-149
  Mary Webster; Emma Foster; Rob Comber; Simon Bowen; Tim Cheetham; Madeline Balaam
Type 1 diabetes affects approximately 1 in every 500 children in the UK. Although it is a lifelong condition, there are few if any overt manifestations, which can make it more difficult to meet people with the same condition. To avoid the risk of health complications, an emphasis is placed on a routine of self-management behaviours. However, factors such as the desire to 'fit in' with the peer group may impede adherence and thus increase the probability of diminished health later in life. Creating appropriate peer support networks may be valuable in aiding a young person with diabetes to attend to their condition through interactions with otherwise unseen peers. Through a series of design workshops the context of living with type 1 diabetes and the value of peer support are explored from the perspective of an adolescent. Four types of support are reported: informational; emotional; tangible; and belonging/companionship, and design opportunities explored.
Framing open-ended and constructive play with emerging interactive materials BIBAFull-Text 150-159
  Marianne Graves Petersen; Majken Kirkegaard Rasmussen; Kasper Buhl Jakobsen
In the materials sciences there are great expectations for how future nano-scale materials such as Graphene point towards a merging between digital and physical materials unseen before. This in turn provides new opportunities for framing open-ended and constructive play. To explore these opportunities we have conducted a large-scale workshop where several hundred children built music instruments using "conductive Lego" in the form of Lego bricks, copper tape, Makey Makey boards and a PC providing musical instrument sounds. Based on experiences from the workshop we conclude that emerging materials can provide multiple entry points into constructive play. However, we highlight that it is key to find appropriate sweet spots between structured and free play in order to engage children in meaningful activities. We provide a set of concepts serving as analytic lenses for reasoning about such sweet spots.
Small group learning with games in museums: effects of interactivity as mediated by cultural differences BIBAFull-Text 160-169
  Panagiotis Apostolellis; Doug A. Bowman
Museums are rich and complex learning experiences, using a variety of interactive approaches to engage their audiences. However, the largely unstructured nature of free-choice learning calls for alternative approaches that can effectively engage groups of school age students with diverse cultural backgrounds. In this paper, we present our findings from a recent study in a museum in Greece, where triads of students had to learn about olive oil production using a game enabling different levels of interactivity and collaboration. We found that facilitation by an expert guide led to greater learning gains as compared to students playing alone, with one or three simultaneous game controllers. We also compared these results with a previous controlled experiment conducted in the US with middle school students, using the same game but without the ecologically valid facilitation. Drawing ideas from sociocultural and cognitive theories we interpret the contradictory findings, identifying the impact of culture on their (social) interactions, their subjective game experience, and eventually learning, in these spaces.
Sensitivity to parental play beliefs and mediation in young children's hybrid play activities BIBAFull-Text 170-177
  Lizzy Bleumers; Karen Mouws; Jonathan Huyghe; Maarten Van Mechelen; Ilse Mariën; Bieke Zaman
Supporting young children's play in the digital world is a challenging endeavor. Little is known, however, about the parental beliefs and mediation practices regarding children's facilitated play in hybrid (mixed digital/physical) environments and how one can account for this through design. Following a Value Sensitive Design approach, we performed: 1) a conceptual literature investigation, 2) an empirical survey with 1398 parents of child(ren) aged 4-6 years, and 3) a technical investigation on online customer reviews of hybrid playful products for children. Our findings reveal the role of parents' mediation and beliefs in shaping young children's play. We provide designers with guidance to be accountable of the way design properties can foster parental play beliefs and support adult-child interaction. We conclude that young children's facilitated play in hybrid environments is shaped by both the social context in which it is enacted and the affordances provided through design.
Narrative support for young game designers' writing BIBAFull-Text 178-187
  Kate Howland; Judith Good; Benedict du Boulay
Creating narrative-based computer games is a complex and challenging task. Narrative Threads is a suite of software tools designed to aid young people (aged 11-15) in creating their own narrative-based games as a writing development activity. A participatory design process highlighted the areas where additional support was required, and informed the iterative design of Narrative Threads. The tools are implemented as a plugin to a commercial game creation toolset, and constitute character and object design tools, a branching narrative diagramming tool and an augmented story map view. In this paper, we provide an overview of the design of the tools and describe an evaluation carried out with 14 children over a four-day workshop. The study examined tool usage patterns, and compared games created with Narrative Threads to those created using the standard toolset. The results suggest a number of ways in which dynamic external representations of story elements can support writing activities in narrative-based game creation. Young designers using Narrative Threads wrote more character dialogue, made stronger links between the conversations they wrote and wider game events, and designed more complex characters, compared to those using the standard toolset. In addition to showing how Narrative Threads can support young games designers, the results have broader implications for anyone looking to support storytelling and writing through game creation activities and tools.
Reverse scaffolding: a constructivist design architecture for mathematics learning with educational technology BIBAFull-Text 189-198
  Kiera Chase; Dor Abrahamson
In the context of a design-based research effort to develop a technology-enabled constructivist algebra unit, a new activity architecture emerged that steps students through discovery levels. As they build a virtual model of a problem situation, students figure out technical principles for assuring the model's fidelity to the situation. These construction heuristics, we find, are precisely the conceptual foundations of algebra, such as tinkering with the model to assure that the variable quantity is of consistent size throughout the model. We articulated these principles as situated intermediary learning objectives (SILOs). At each interaction level, the student discovers a SILO, and then the technology takes over by automatizing that SILO, thus freeing the student for further discovery. We call this architecture reverse scaffolding, because the cultural mediator thus relieves learners from performing what they know to do, not from what they do not know to do. In a quasi-experimental evaluation study (Grades 4 & 9; n=40), reverse-scaffolding students outperformed direct-scaffolding students, for whom the technical features were pre-automatized. We speculate on the architecture's generalizability.
To block or not to block, that is the question: students' perceptions of blocks-based programming BIBAFull-Text 199-208
  David Weintrop; Uri Wilensky
Blocks-based programming tools are becoming increasingly common in high-school introductory computer science classes. Such contexts are quite different than the younger audience and informal settings where these tools are more often used. This paper reports findings from a study looking at how high school students view blocks-based programming tools, what they identify as contributing to the perceived ease-of-use of such tools, and what they see as the most salient differences between blocks-based and text-based programming. Students report that numerous factors contribute to making blocks-based programming easy, including the natural language description of blocks, the drag-and-drop composition interaction, and the ease of browsing the language. Students also identify drawbacks to blocks-based programming compared to the conventional text-based approach, including a perceived lack of authenticity and being less powerful. These findings, along with the identified differences between blocks-based and text-based programming, contribute to our understanding of the suitability of using such tools in formal high school settings and can be used to inform the design of new, and revision of existing, introductory programming tools.
Opportunistic uses of the traditional school day through student examination of Fitbit activity tracker data BIBAFull-Text 209-218
  Victor R. Lee; Joel R. Drake; Ryan Cain; Jeffrey Thayne
In large part due to the highly prescribed nature of the typical school day for children, efforts to design new interactions with technology have often focused on less-structured after-school clubs and other out-of-school environments. We argue that while the school day imposes serious restrictions, school routines can and should be opportunistically leveraged by designers and by youth. Specifically, wearable activity tracking devices open some new avenues for opportunistic collection of and reflection on data from the school day. To demonstrate this, we present two cases from an elementary statistics classroom unit we designed that intentionally integrated wearable activity trackers and child-created data visualizations. The first case involves a group of students comparing favored recess activities to determine which was more physically demanding. The second case is of a student who took advantage of her knowledge of teachers' school day routines to test the reliability of a Fitbit activity tracker against a commercial mobile app.
Challenging group dynamics in participatory design with children: lessons from social interdependence theory BIBAFull-Text 219-228
  Maarten Van Mechelen; Bieke Zaman; Ann Laenen; Vero Vanden Abeele
In this paper we explore whether Social Interdependence Theory (SIT) is a useful theoretical framework to anticipate on challenging intragroup dynamics in co-design with children. According to SIT, there are five principles that mediate the effectiveness of cooperation: positive interdependence, individual accountability, promotive interaction patterns, social skills and group processing. First, we theoretically ground six challenging group dynamics encountered in a previous study. Next, we introduce SIT and describe how we applied each of the five mediating principles in a new case study in which 49 children aged 9 to 10 were involved in a series of co-design sessions. Afterwards, we present our findings and reflect upon the SIT inspired co-design procedure. Finally we touch upon topics for further research and we make a call for more research on SIT in the Child Computer Interaction (CCI) community.
"I have a tutorial for this": the language of online peer support in the scratch programming community BIBAFull-Text 229-238
  Deborah A. Fields; Katarina Pantic; Yasmin B. Kafai
Millions of kids are visiting and communicating in online sites and communities. While some concerns have been raised unsupervised and potentially harmful communication, a number of studies have identified great potential in kids' online talk, especially when related to feedback on user-generated content. Yet little research has been done at scale to show whether or not positive communication practices are broadly engaged in or supported online. This paper focuses on the informal peer support present in the online Scratch community, a youth programming site. Drawing on a random sample of 8,000 comments from over 5,000 random participants on the Scratch website gathered from January to March 2012, our analysis focuses on the quality of comments about projects and identifies their constructive, emotional and functional foci In the discussion, we address what these findings tell us about productive participation, potential for future research, and opportunities for scaffolding broader and richer participation.
Using haptic inputs to enrich story listening for young children BIBAFull-Text 239-242
  Siyan Zhao; Jill Lehman; Ali Israr; Roberta Klatzky
Research on children's cognitive development has demonstrated the positive effects of listening to stories. However, traditional story listening is losing its appeal to other entertainment technology such as video games. Hence, there is growing interest in studying the influence of ancillary media such as sound and interactive effects, although haptic sensory input has remained relatively unexploited. We implemented a haptic vest that generates vibrotactile stimulation related to story content to augment story listening. Study 1 showed that 5- and 6-year olds, but not 4-year olds, could associate haptic effects with semantic interpretations. In Study 2, children listened to stories containing elements with or without haptic effects. The 5- and 6-year olds showed better comprehension of the haptically-signaled content in the higher-performance story. The results provide initial evidence that haptic effects can potentially enhance the reading/listening experience of children beyond 4 years.
Design and evaluation of socially assistive robotics providing assistance for children through machine learning of languages BIBAFull-Text 243-246
  Park Sanghoo; Noh Geeyoung; Cho Jun-Dong
This study aims to design socially assistive robotics (SAR) that provide assistance to children aged 4-6 years; this is achieved through machine learning of languages, and by evaluating changes in children's reactions according to language learning stages of a robot. To this end, an assistive toy for language learning, named ARA, was developed and taught the language spoken by children who played with Furby and the responses and reactions of children during the different language learning degrees of ARA were video-recorded and analyzed. The recorded videos were quantitatively analyzed from a behavioral perspective (i.e. talking to Furby, touching or stroking Furby, and talking to his/her mother) and emotional perspective (i.e. positive expression, neutral expression, and negative expression). The analytical results were compared according to the language learning stages of ARA. Furthermore, on the basis of the analysis, it was evident that if robots can naturally communicate with children through gradual language learning based on conversations with the children, the children can improve their conversational ability as well as their communication skills by playing with robots. In addition, the children can interact with a communication target more positively compared with their reaction to simple movements or sound of a robot, and this can help achieve more positive emotional development in children.
Interactive eye tracking for gaze strategy modification BIBAFull-Text 247-250
  Quan Wang; Feridun M. Celebi; Lilli Flink; Gabriella Greco; Carla Wall; Emily Prince; Sharlene Lansiquot; Katarzyna Chawarska; Elizabeth S. Kim; Laura Boccanfuso; Lauren DiNicola; Frederick Shic
Atypical looking behaviors in neuropsychiatric conditions such as autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are not only a reflection of inherently abnormal neuropsychological processes, but also suggest that future access to observational learning opportunities may be limited. The work presented in this paper uses interactive eye tracking as a first step towards the development of automated tools that can help toddlers and young children with atypical visual attention learn to attend to social information in a more typical fashion. In our study, we designed an automated visual strategy training system that would redirect a viewers' attention to locations highly salient to the normative control group when the viewer drifted from those locations for a significant period of time. We evaluated our experimental technique on typically-developing adults, obtaining results that suggest that looking patterns can be altered to be more similar to those evidenced by a normative group of young children. Furthermore, these alterations appear be retained in post-training sessions when considering new presentations of videos participants had been trained upon, and, on more sensitive outcome measures based on integrated scanpath probabilities (heatmaps), seemed to generalize presentations not trained upon as well. The development of these techniques may provide a new model for modifying attentional biases not only in toddlers with ASD, but also in children affected by other neuropsychiatric conditions, and may thus lead to new therapeutic interventions as well as more efficacious methods for identifying the patterns associated with abnormal, attention-driven experience.
Anxiety storm: creating a playful prevention program against performance anxiety in primary school BIBAFull-Text 251-254
  Ralf Schmidt; Stephanie Scheja; Thanh Thu Lam; Maic Masuch
The paper presents a work-in-progress report on a long-term project to create a game-based prevention program against performance anxiety (PA) in primary schools. The approach described reflects the special requirements of children and teachers within the context on a didactical, organizational and conceptual level as well as those of a low cost development with student teams. A study on the first game prototype conducted among 61 pupil showed positive results in learning and insights on the situated context and further design and development. The general concept of a situated multimedia approach with didactically framed interactive game-components seems correct.
Sketching through the body: child-generated gestures in full-body interaction design BIBAFull-Text 255-258
  Marie-Monique Schaper; Laura Malinverni; Narcis Pares
The aim of this paper is to explore techniques to design specific gestures with children to improve the interaction design of a Full-Body Interaction Learning Environment. This exploratory case study is part of the EcoSystem Project, a learning environment aimed at supporting children's understanding of environmental issues related to air-pollution. In order to involve children in the design of the physical interaction with the system, we used two different techniques to facilitate the design of gestures: "sketching through the body" and "sketching with puppets". The results indicate that children adopted different strategies to design gestures for each technique. Within them, the most effective approach was related to the switch between performing gestures with their own bodies and simulating those gestures with puppets. This finding indicates the potential of those Participatory Design methods which combine multi-modal resources as instruments to allow children to reflect upon their own knowledge and express it more precisely.
Investigating technology for children with selective mutism BIBAFull-Text 259-262
  Ishwarya Manivannan; Jerry Alan Fails
This study explores the lifestyles of children with Selective Mutism (SM) to identify how to help children with SM communicate with those around them. Parents of Selectively Mute (SM2) children were interviewed to understand the challenges faced regarding SM and to examine why their children use technology. Children with and without SM were also interviewed through drawings to recognize their technology preferences. It was found that children frequently use technology like tablets for entertainment purposes and sometimes for interacting with others. Parents reported that their children become calm when they use technology and believed that technology could be used to promote speech. The findings from our study can act as a guide for speech-promoting technology. These findings indicate that an ideal technology is one that is inclusive and mobile and encourages stimulus fading and play therapy.
"Let's dive into it!": Learning electricity with multiple representations BIBAFull-Text 263-266
  Elham Beheshti; Mmachi Obiorah; Michael S. Horn
Electrical circuits are difficult to understand. In this paper, we introduce Spark, a museum exhibit that enables learners to interact with multiple representations of electrical circuits at the same time. The goal is to familiarize children with fundamental concepts of electricity such as current and resistance. We tested our design with 6 parent-child dyads at a major science museum. Our study investigates how families make sense of representations at the level of circuits and at the level of electrons and ions. Our findings show a wide variety of visitor interactions with the exhibit, in particular when connecting the two representations of a circuit.
Interactive design by children: a construct map for programming BIBAFull-Text 267-270
  Alexandria K. Hansen; Hilary A. Dwyer; Charlotte Hill; Ashley Iveland; Timothy Martinez; Danielle Harlow; Diana Franklin
In this paper, we present our analysis of 92 fourth graders' digital story projects completed in LaPlaya, a Scratch-like programming environment. Projects were analyzed for the way that students programmed the start of the story, and if the program integrated user-centered design by providing instruction to the user on how to interact with the digital story. We found that fourth grade students rarely used user-centered design while creating digital stories in our block-based programming environment. Without explicit instruction, the demands of learning programming and simultaneously programming for an abstract user may be too cognitively demanding for the average fourth grader.
Code and tell: assessing young children's learning of computational thinking using peer video interviews with ScratchJr BIBAFull-Text 271-274
  Dylan J. Portelance; Marina Umaschi Bers
In this paper, we present a novel technique for assessing the learning of computational thinking in the early childhood classroom. Students in three second grade classrooms learned foundational computational thinking concepts using ScratchJr and applied what they learned to creating animated collages, stories, and games. They then conducted artifact-based video interviews with each other in pairs using their iPad cameras. As discussed in the results, this technique can show a broad range of what young children learn about computational thinking in classroom interventions using ScratchJr than more traditional assessment techniques. It simultaneously provides a developmentally appropriate educational activity (i.e. peer interviews) for early childhood classrooms.
Game based learning tool seeking peer support for empowering adolescent girls in rural Assam BIBAFull-Text 275-278
  Minal Jain; Pradeep Yammiyavar
Adolescent girls especially in rural parts of India are shrouded in myth, superstition and various restrictions since the time they attain menarche. These misconceptions and ignorance lead to severe health consequences. In this paper we describe evaluation of a digital game -- 'Help Pinky' designed to bridge information gaps and alleviate taboos related to menstruation and puberty in adolescent girls in rural Assam. 'Help Pinky' dwells on the paradigm of game based learning and seeks support of peers for achieving success in the game. The evaluation study was conducted in two parts -- a pilot followed by the final test. The game was found effective in triggering discussions about stigmatized topics related to puberty. We discuss through our study and literature how learning through games seeking local community support could be a step towards dissolving the existent silence that prevails around these topics, thereby leading to free discussions and better health in the long run.
Design for self-reporting psychological health in children with intellectual disabilities BIBAFull-Text 279-282
  Petra Boström; Eva Eriksson
In this paper, we describe the development and initial results of an interactive touch based questionnaire aiming to support self-reporting of the psychological health among children with intellectual disabilities (ID) aged 12-15. The questionnaire was developed in co-operation with pupils and teachers in special education and is tailored to assess psychological health, peer-relations, school- and family environment in youths with various disabilities. Preliminary results indicate that the application can be reliably completed by pupils without assistance from adults, independent of the youth's level of word comprehension and reading ability. The application allow for children with ID to self-report on psychological health, an essential first step in order to understand factors that contribute to variation in psychological health. This information can be the ground for designs that can change the everyday life for all children and youth with a chronic intellectual disability. The project is still ongoing, and the contribution of this paper is the lessons learned from developing a questionnaire that support self-reporting and assessment of psychological health in children with intellectual disabilities.
LEGO music: learning composition with bricks BIBAFull-Text 283-286
  Uwe Oestermeier; Philipp Mock; Jörg Edelmann; Peter Gerjets
We present a multi-touch tabletop application that utilizes LEGO bricks as physical representations for musical notes to create a novel digital learning environment for musical composition principles. Our application makes use of the physical qualities that graspable objects provide and combines them with dynamic visualizations on a multi-touch screen. While the system can be used to collaboratively create melodies and harmonies, our concept specifically aims at introducing and teaching composition principles. In this paper, we illustrate the concept and the iterative process that lead to the final application design. Furthermore, we discuss findings from four composing workshops which were conducted with school children with varying levels of musical expertise.
Supporting creativity in designing story authoring tools BIBAFull-Text 287-290
  Elisa Rubegni; Monica Landoni
In this paper we describe our experience in designing an application to support children in producing their stories in a formal setting, a primary school. In particular, we reflect on the implications of our findings on levels of creativity found in the produced stories. Besides, we compare two versions of our application: one is text-based and the other is image-rich. Feedback from teachers and children is presented and discussed in terms of implications for the design. We will then use our experience to revise the existing guidelines to design authoring tools to stimulate creativity.
Physics-based gaming: exploring touch vs. mid-air gesture input BIBAFull-Text 291-294
  Christiane Moser; Manfred Tscheligi
Physics-based games, like Cut the Rope, have become very popular and are now available on different operating systems with different input modalities. In a user study with 20 children aged 11 to 14 years, we investigated the differences in player experience when playing Cut the Rope on the tablet with touch gestures and on the computer with mid-air gestures using a Leap Motion. The quantitative data from the questionnaire revealed no substantial differences regarding the player experience, which might be due to the novelty effect of the Leap Motion mid-air gestures. However, the observations indicated several problems of accuracy and orientation when playing the game with mid-air gestures. This is due to the lack of hardware-based physical feedback when interacting with the Leap Motion and results in a different affordance that has to be considered in future physics-based game design using mid-air gestures.
Augmenting children's tablet-based reading experiences with variable friction haptic feedback BIBAFull-Text 295-298
  Drew Cingel; Courtney Blackwell; Sabrina Connell; Anne Marie Piper
This paper explores the integration of tactile feedback into children's electronic books (e-books) through variable friction surface haptics enabled by the TPaD Tablet technology. Through a user study with 10 pairs of children and their parents, we examine how children and parents conceive of and add haptics to a popular e-book. We report conceptual and practical differences in the ways in which children of various ages (3-8 years old) and adults envision haptic feedback within an e-book and conclude with a discussion of design considerations for creating haptic e-books.
Initial validation of an assistive technology to enhance executive functioning among children with ADHD BIBAFull-Text 299-302
  Oren Zuckerman; Ayelet Gal-Oz; Neta Tamir; Daphne Kopelman-Rubin
Children with Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) experience a deficit in cognitive processes responsible for goal-directed behaviors, known as executive functioning (EF). In an effort to assist them, we developed TangiPlan -- a prototype of a tangible assistive technology intended to improve EF during morning routines. TangiPlan was designed based on the following guidelines: implement intervention techniques recommended by experts; reduce conflicts with caregivers; avoid intrusion; support flexibility and autonomy. These design guidelines were implemented in a prototype consisting of six tangible objects, each representing a task that needs to be completed during a child's morning routine, and a tablet application for planning tasks and matching them with objects. An initial evaluation of the prototype with two case studies resulted in improved organization and time management, increased satisfaction, and fewer conflicts with parents during morning routines.
Using children's drawings to improve a programming app BIBAFull-Text 303-306
  Robert Sheehan; David Haden; Sara Metz
After being shown a prototype tablet programming environment, iFizz, children were asked to draw computer programs, either games or stories, that they would like to make with such an environment. The drawings in conjunction with the children's descriptions were then inspected to see what functions were missing from the programming environment in order to make it easier for children to produce their programs. A small number of programming functions were extracted from the drawings along with some changes to the programming environment's user interface and tools. These additions and changes are described and the most common requirements are now being added to the programming environment.
Learning complex systems with story-building in scratch BIBAFull-Text 307-310
  Amanda M. Bell
Complex systems are difficult for many students to understand. But new technologies are promising tools for helping students learn about systems thinking. In this paper, I present a case study of a middle school student creating stories in Scratch to learn about programming and complex systems. I discuss his learning in relation to the affordances of the Scratch activities and the student's abilities and goals. Results show that while the student did learn about programming, the linearity of stories in Scratch did not afford opportunities for learning about interconnections in complex systems.
The influence of constructing robot's behavior on the development of theory of mind (ToM) and theory of artificial mind (ToAM) in young children BIBAFull-Text 311-314
  Karen Spektor-Precel; David Mioduser
A new theoretical scheme named ToAM (Theory of Artificial Mind) was examined by means of qualitative and quantitative methodology among twenty four 5-7 year old children from central Israel. The study also examined the effects of interacting with behaving artifacts (constructing versus observing the robot's behavior) using the "RoboGan" interface on children's development of ToAM and ToM and looked for conceptions that evolve among children while interacting with behaving artifacts which are indicative of the acquisition of ToAM. The quantitative analysis indicated that the interaction with behaving artifacts, for both age and condition groups brought into awareness children's ToM as well as influenced their ability to understand that robots can behave independently and based on external and environmental conditions. The qualitative analysis indicated that the engagement in building the robot's behavior influenced the constructors' ability to explain several of the robots' behaviors, their understanding of the robot's script-based behavior and rule-based behavior and the children's metacognitive development. The theoretical and practical importance of the study is discussed.
Kiteracy: a kit of tangible objects to strengthen literacy skills in children with down syndrome BIBAFull-Text 315-318
  Janio Jadan-Guerrero; Javier Jaen; María A. Carpio; Luis A. Guerrero
Kiteracy is an educational kit designed to improve the literacy process of children with Down syndrome by enabling higher levels of interaction. The kit is based on two Spanish literacy methods: global and phonics. In this work, we present a qualitative study based on video-recorded sessions with twelve children from a Down syndrome institution. The study analyzes three forms of interactions: cardboard, multi-touch and tangible. The task carried out by special education teachers and children in the experimental sessions involved working in pairs (Teacher-child) and autonomous self-learning (child only). Through the sessions, we identified situations in which the teacher took the control in the cardboard version. In the multi-touch version, both the teacher and the child shared the control. However in the tangible version the child took the control. In the self-learning sessions, we observed that multi-touch and tangible interaction seems to offer an enjoyable time for children. Surveys and interviews with teachers revealed that tangible objects offered greater adaptability to create playful reading strategies.
A tangible programming system conveying event handling concept BIBAFull-Text 319-322
  Danli Wang; Yunfeng Qi; Lan Zhang
Tangible User Interfaces (TUIs) can create opportunities to learn programming for children, which have positive effect on children's development. TanProRobot is a tangible system designed for children at grade 1-2 to learn programming concepts. It consists of three parts, tangible programming blocks, the robot car and the manipulatives. The input and output of the system are both tangible. Children can program the robot car to act certain actions by arranging programming blocks. Also, children can interact with the car with manipulatives. TanProRobot aims to introduce event handling concept and sensors to children. During the game, children can also learn some traffic rules, which are import to self-security.
The role of materiality in tangibles for young children's digital art drawings BIBAFull-Text 323-326
  Janelle Arita; Jinsil Hwaryoung Seo; Sharon Chu; Francis Quek
The purpose of this study is to investigate the role of materiality in tangible interaction design for children. We specifically target children aged 4 to 6 years old because of societal trend of early exposure to touch screen devices for children. This study compares three types of material (felt, wood, and plastic) for tangibles along with touch-based interaction and how the differences implicate child art creation on an iPad application. Through mixed-methods analysis of twenty-six participants' experiences, we use data sources of video recordings, drawings, and interview. The main finding looked at the hardness of materiality for physical and digital drawing tools and its influence to digital art drawings. The findings from this study may be applied to design tangible user interfaces for young children.
Creative design process in making electronic textiles BIBAFull-Text 327-330
  Verily Tan; Kylie Peppler
This paper looks at the creative design process in making electronic or e-textiles. E-textile artifacts were first evaluated for creativity using the Consensual Assessment Technique. By comparing the design processes of artifacts with high and low creativity scores, we draw inferences about the creative design process. Deductive coding using themes from literature on design and creative processes showed the importance, and interaction between the following factors: attention; high degree of divergence before convergence during idea and solution finding; aesthetic and functional considerations; and designing to convey social themes. The paper concludes with a discussion on how to engage youth in creative design and future research directions.
Colouring the path from instruction to practice: perspectives on software for struggling readers BIBAFull-Text 331-334
  Emily S. Cramer; Alissa N. Antle; Min Fan
Mainstream paper and pencil interventions for Anglophone students with dyslexia emphasize a strategy of analyzing syllables to compensate for irregularities in English letter-sound correspondences. Classroom interventions have developed effective scaffolds for supporting students in analyzing syllables in instructional contexts. However, students typically fail to transfer knowledge to practice contexts (i.e, reading without a tutor). Software has proven to be an effective medium for helping dyslexic students practice basic literacy skills (phoneme awareness and letter knowledge). However, at present, there are no systems specifically designed to support dyslexic students in practicing syllable analysis. Correspondingly, there is a lack of information about which design features would best support dyslexic students in transferring syllable analysis skills from instructional (classroom) to practice (software) contexts. In an attempt to address this gap, we propose two guidelines for software supports of syllable-analysis in dyslexia: 1. Design software that serves as a dual medium for instruction and practice 2. Design scaffolds that serve as dual catalysts for learning and transfer. We realize our guidelines in a prototype software system for syllable analysis that uses colour-coding to direct attention to information during learning and to retrieve learned information during practice.
"Siri, is this you?": Understanding young children's interactions with voice input systems BIBAFull-Text 335-338
  Silvia Lovato; Anne Marie Piper
The increasing pervasiveness of voice input systems in consumer devices (e.g., Apple's iOS Siri) creates the potential for young children to use features and access content that previously required the ability to read and write. However, whether and how young children use voice input systems and associated voice agents on mainstream devices has not been studied in detail. This paper reports preliminary findings from an online survey with parents about children's use of voice input systems and a content analysis of YouTube videos depicting child interaction with one popular voice input system. Our results reveal three primary ways in which children use voice input systems: exploration, to understand and relate to the voice agent and for fun; information seeking, related to fact-finding questions and information about their surrounding environment; and functional, as a means of operating the device. While our results are preliminary, they highlight a variety of opportunities and challenges voice input systems present for children and parents.
Make, wear, play: remix designs of wearable controllers for scratch games by middle school youth BIBAFull-Text 339-342
  Veena Vasudevan; Yasmin Kafai; Lei Yang
Most approaches to constructionist gaming -- students making their own games for learning -- have focused on screen designs. Hybrid crafting approaches that integrate crafts with digital components can extend game making beyond the screen and provide new opportunities for creative expression and learning. In this paper, we report on a workshop with middle school youth (ages 11-13 years) who were using MaKey MaKey, textiles and other conductive materials to sew and glue together wearable game controllers to play their own remixed flappy bird games in Scratch. We examined students' approaches to computing and crafting their onscreen and offscreen designs using Papert's concept of syntonicity that emphasizes resonance across multiple dimensions with children's interests. Finally, we discuss in which ways constructionist gaming can benefit from extending their designs into the physical world.
Designing games for learning and assessment: the radix endeavor BIBAFull-Text 343-346
  Jody Clarke-Midura; Louisa Rosenheck; Jennifer Groff
In this paper, we briefly present a design framework, XCD, that we developed through the design of The Radix Endeavor, a multiplayer online game for STEM learning. The framework provides a method for ensuring that the learning objectives, game mechanics, and data collected are closely aligned throughout the design process. We present this method here as a resource for other learning game designers, with the goal of making designing games with deep learning more accessible.
Resources, facilitation, and partnerships: three design considerations for youth makerspaces BIBAFull-Text 347-350
  Breanne K. Litts
As the maker movement proliferates, interaction design scholars and educators more commonly refer to makerspaces as learning environments and adopt making for more formal education. So far, researchers have primarily adopted an activity lens toward making, that is, they focus on making as an activity of learning, and in this paper I also consider community and identity lenses by examining makerspaces and maker identities. Specifically, I investigate the affordances and constraints of activity, identity, and community design features across youth makerspaces. I present a comparative case study across three youth makerspaces and offer three design considerations (managing resources, equipping facilitators, and establishing partnerships) that cut across these spaces. Drawing on these features as typical of youth makerspaces, I discuss implications for the design and support of makerspaces.
Blending robots and full-body interaction with large screens for children with intellectual disability BIBAFull-Text 351-354
  Andrea Bonarini; Francesco Clasadonte; Franca Garzotto; Mirko Gelsomini
The core contribution of this paper lies in exploring new spaces of interaction for children with Intellectual Developmental Disorder (IDD). In the KROG (Kinect-RObot for Gaming) Project, we blend full-body interaction, virtual worlds on large screens, motion sensing technology, and mobile robots to support game-based interventions. This paper highlights the design challenges induced by this mix of technologies and interaction paradigms, presents the prototypes that have been iteratively designed and tested with 22 specialists, and discusses the lessons learned from our project.
Designing a relational social robot toolkit for preschool children to explore computational concepts BIBAFull-Text 355-358
  Michal Gordon; Eileen Rivera; Edith Ackermann; Cynthia Breazeal
Designing toolkits for teaching programming concepts to children using robots has received growing attention in recent years. However, teaching preschool children computational concepts, such as non-determinism and event-based programming, presents particular challenges. We have developed a programming toolkit that is embedded in an interpersonal interaction context with a social robot. The toolkit enables young children to program social robots by "teaching" them to interact. In order to "teach", the children show the robot rules designed with reusable vinyl stickers. In doing so, children can experiment with computational concepts while having a playful interaction with the social robot. We present the purpose, context, and design of the social robot toolkit (SoRo Toolkit), and an evaluation performed with 22 preschool children. We show that children have an engaging experience designing and "teaching" social interaction rules to the robot, orchestrating give-and-take exchanges, and delighting in how the robot engages with them as they explore computational ideas.
Designing a virtual assistant for in-car child entertainment BIBAFull-Text 359-362
  Michal Gordon; Cynthia Breazeal
Driving is an attention-demanding task, especially with children in the back seat. While most recommendations prefer to reduce children's screen time in common entertainment systems, e.g. DVD players and tablets, parents often rely on these systems to entertain the children during car trips. These systems often lack key components that are important for modern parents, namely, sociability and educational content. In this contribution we introduce PANDA, a parental affective natural driving assistant. PANDA is a virtual in-car entertainment agent that can migrate around the car to interact with the parent-driver or with children in the back seat. PANDA supports the parent-driver via speech interface, helps to mediate her interaction with children in the back seat, and works to reduce distractions for the driver while also engaging, entertaining and educating children. We present the design of PANDA system and preliminary tests of the prototype system in a car setting.
A value sensitive design approach to parental software for young children BIBAFull-Text 363-366
  Marije Nouwen; Maarten Van Mechelen; Bieke Zaman
Parental control software enables parents to support risk-management of their children's digital media use. However, tools to support online opportunities are left unexplored. This paper presents an explorative inquiry into stakeholder values related to parental software for young children, using a Value Sensitive Design approach. By studying values, we aim to illuminate design of parental software solutions that are responsive to the issues families find most important. We engaged in value exploration of corporate and parental values, and conducted a workshop with the corporate stakeholders to align stakeholder values. The results highlight the importance of values such as 'control for safety' and 'involvement' in the development of parental software for young children. The contribution of this paper lies in the understanding of stakeholder needs and values concerning software tools that balance online risks and opportunities for young children.
Mattie: a simple educational platform for children to realize their first robot prototype BIBAFull-Text 367-370
  Matthias Hirschmanner; Lara Lammer; Markus Vincze
The landscape of robotics platforms for education is broad and mainly focused on technical problem solving skills. The different application areas serve for adding some variety regarding skill sets and areas of interest, however design or product development skills are often neglected. Mattie is a simple robotic platform for children to realize their first robotic product ideas. The design is kept very simple. Materials are affordable and easily available. The aim is to guide children to build their first robot prototype from scratch by learning product development and scientific working. The concept around the Mattie robot incorporates different perspectives like product, behavior, marketing or design besides technology and engineering. This way, robotics can appeal to those children who are not interested in engineering or programming right away. We have successfully used the Mattie robot in classroom workshop settings with seven different classes (6th, 7th and 9th grades). The feedback from teachers and students aged 11-18 is very positive.
Paper mechatronics: a design case study for a young medium BIBAFull-Text 371-374
  Hyunjoo Oh; Michael Eisenberg; Mark D. Gross; Sherry Hsi
Paper Mechatronics is a novel interdisciplinary design medium for children, enabled by recent advances in craft technologies: the term refers to a reappraisal of traditional educational papercrafts in combination with accessible mechanical, electronic, and computational elements. We present a design case study -- building computationally-enhanced paper flowers -- and discuss the iterative design process involved in the creation. We also describe a workshop we conducted with teenagers to evaluate paper mechatronics as a creative learning activity for children. We conclude with a discussion of future directions.
Learning practices of making: developing a framework for design BIBAFull-Text 375-378
  Peter S. Wardrip; Lisa Brahms
While the Maker Movement has gained momentum in formal and informal settings, the practice has been ahead of the research, especially on learning. In this paper, we introduce a framework of learning practices (LPs) of making for the Children's Museum of Pittsburgh's makerspace, called MAKESHOP. Through a collaborative and iterative process with the Teaching Artists, we developed and revised a framework of LPs of making. The LPs are described and illustrative data from a circuit block activity are provided to further explain the practices. Implications and some future work are discussed.
Exploring children's designs for maker technologies BIBAFull-Text 379-382
  Daniel Fitton; Janet C. Read; John Dempsey
There is growing interest in maker technologies around how they can be included in school curriculums to engage children with science subjects and about their use to explore new creative possibilities. Given that maker technologies are currently unfamiliar to most children across the world this work sought to use these technologies to investigate whether technology experience has an influence on design within a making context. A study was carried out with 29 participants aged 8-9 that involved a design task and a scaffolded making task based around a physical game using Arduino. Half of the participants completed the making task first then the design task, the other half completed the design task first then the making task. The design ideas created were then coded on 5-point scales for complexity of construction and novelty of concept, the coders also looked for evidence of transference from the making task to the design ideas. Results indicated that completing the making task prior to the design task increased the mean complexity of construction score. No clear evidence was found of elements from the making task being transferred into the design ideas. In addition to the specific findings about technology influence on design, the paper offers more general insights for those working within this space.
Lifelong learning lab: collaborative design of hands-on science for Chinese schools BIBAFull-Text 383-386
  Francois Grey; Jiawei Li; Qingyuan Shi; Ellie Doney; Weng Hoe Chen; Jeffrey Shen
A new kind of lab is being established to study and promote collaborative learning and hands-on creativity in China: the Lifelong Learning Lab. The goal of this lab is to support current reform efforts in the Chinese education system, with its traditional focus on rote learning and exam results, by developing effective ways to integrate collaborative and hands-on learning experiences. The emphasis is on collaboration between different age groups, from pre-K to primary school through high school and university and even beyond, to the emerging world of online education in China. As a prototype of this lifelong learning approach, we describe here results from an initiative called LEGO2NANO, where undergraduate and graduate students from China and the UK collaborated with Chinese high school and middle-school students to design a novel hands-on science learning experience based on a DIY Atomic Force Microscope. We detail a range of outcomes of this student-led collaborative design initiative, ranging from hardware and software development to interactive design and child psychology.
Designing a socially assistive robot for pediatric care BIBAFull-Text 387-390
  Sooyeon Jeong; Kristopher Dos Santos; Suzanne Graca; Brianna O'Connell; Laurel Anderson; Nicole Stenquist; Katie Fitzpatrick; Honey Goodenough; Deirdre Logan; Peter Weinstock; Cynthia Breazeal
We present the design of the Huggable robot that can playfully interact with children and provide socio-emotional support for them in pediatric care context. Our design takes into consideration that many young patients are nervous, intimidated, and are socio-emotionally vulnerable at hospitals. The Huggable robot has a childish and furry look be perceived friendly and can perform swift and smooth motions. It uses a smart phone device for its computational power and internal sensors. The robot's haptic sensors perceive physical touch and can use the information in meaningful ways. The modular arm component allows easy sensor replacement and increases the usability of the Huggable robot for various pediatric care services. From a preliminary pilot user study with two healthy and two ill children, all participants enjoyed playing with the robot but the two children with medical conditions showed caring and empathetic behaviors than the two health children. We learned various types of physical touch occurred during the child-robot interaction, and will continue to develop more intelligent haptic sensory system for the Huggable robot to better assist and support child patients' socio-emotional needs.
Sketching intentions: comparing different metaphors for programming robots BIBAFull-Text 391-394
  Richard Davis; Engin Bumbacher; Oceane Bel; Arnan Sipitakiat; Paulo Blikstein
This paper introduces a new environment for programming robots and physical computing devices -- the Spatial Computing Platform (SCP)-- and compares it to a text-based programming environment (the Cricket Logo). The SCP simplifies the process of constructing conditional statements that link the robot's inputs and outputs together. It does this by providing the user with a virtual canvas that they can draw rectangles on using the mouse. Each rectangle represents a range of sensor values, and specific outputs can be assigned to each rectangle. When the sensor values enter into the specified range, the outputs will turn on. We designed a study with 60 youth to compare this environment to Cricket Logo, a well-known variant of Logo designed to control robotic devices. We found that participants using the spatial computing platform were able to build programs of higher complexity and make more changes to their programs over the course of an hour-long workshop.
Using augmented reality to support observations about trees during summer camp BIBAFull-Text 395-398
  Heather Toomey Zimmerman; Susan M. Land; Michael R. Mohney; Gi Woong Choi; Chrystal Maggiore; Soo Hyeon Kim; Yong Ju Jung; Jaclyn Dudek
This research examines how augmented reality (AR) learning experiences supported children's engagement in science. We conducted a video-based study of seven sessions over two weeks at a summer camp program. We investigated how scientific talk related to observational practices could be supported by a mobile app incorporating AR. Researchers coded videos of youth (n=35) during an outdoor program on the tree life cycle to understand science talk related to observations of trees. Findings suggested that the use of AR to support tree identification led to learner-initiated talk and observations as demonstrated by high levels of perceptual (describing) talk. Learners relied on the AR technology and peers in order to engage in this observational work.
Making physical and digital games with e-textiles: a workshop for youth making responsive wearable games and controllers BIBAFull-Text 399-402
  Gabriela T. Richard; Yasmin B. Kafai
Most research on game making has focused on designing digital games, as opposed to incorporating the potential for the designs of peripherals and controllers. In this paper, we illustrate how youth created wearable and physically interactive controllers by combining digital and tangible construction kits: Scratch, ModKit, the MaKey MaKey, and the Lilypad Arduino. In an eight-session workshop, 14-15-year old youth coded and created their own Scratch games and created wearable or electronic textile-based bidirectionally responsive game controllers using sensors to activate a response on the screen, through the physical artifact, or both interfaces. We analyzed students' design of game controllers, as well as post-workshop interviews, to understand how they articulated an understanding of bidirectionally responsive design and its affordances, focusing on a case study. In the discussion we address some of the insights and challenges presented through the workshop, and offer suggestions for future work.
uChoose by InteractAble: learning social skills via game play BIBAFull-Text 403-405
  Melissa Morgenlander; Allison D'Eugenio; Deidre Witan
uChoose by InteractAble, Inc. is a fun and engaging game that uses a unique platform to teach social skills to individuals with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). The highly visual and animated platform guides the user through various social scenarios using a series of multiple choice questions, mini games and conditional events for every game play. Achievable goals encourage the user to explore multiple outcomes for the same scenario with repeat plays. The near term learning outcome expected (and revealed in preliminary pilot studies), is a better understanding of various actions and cues key to successful social interactions. Longer term, after hours of play, we anticipate that a child with ASD will process information in social situations according to methods learned and generalized for unexpected situations.
TADCAD: a tangible and gestural 3D modeling & printing platform for building creativity BIBAFull-Text 406-409
  Paula Te
In the era of personal fabrication, 3D printers are becoming widely accessible. 3D printing something from one's imagination, though, can be challenging with existing computer-aided design. TADCAD helps kids learn 3D modeling in a fun and physical way that gets them engaged and inspired to build complex creations. It recognizes simple 2D shapes and uses gestures to transform them into 3D. In the spirit of DIY culture, children learn the basics of 3D modeling by printing their own tools and building upon them. The current implementation of TADCAD is a prototype and a starting point to discuss applications of augmented reality, gestural interaction, and tangible interfaces in interaction paradigms in working, learning, and creating in the domain of 3D modeling and elsewhere.
Strawbies: explorations in tangible programming BIBAFull-Text 410-413
  Felix Hu; Ariel Zekelman; Michael Horn; Frances Judd
In this demo we present Strawbies, a realtime tangible programming game designed for children ages 5 to 10. Strawbies is played by constructing physical programs out of wooden tiles in front of an iPad. This interaction is made possible with the use of an Osmo play system that includes a mirror to reflect images in front of the iPad through the front-facing camera. We combined this system with the TopCodes computer vision library for fast and reliable image recognition. Here we describe a set of principles that guided our iterative design process along with an overview of testing sessions with children that informed our most recent instantiation of Strawbies.
ScratchJr demo: a coding language for kindergarten BIBAFull-Text 414-417
  Amanda Strawhacker; Melissa Lee; Claire Caine; Marina Bers
This paper describes the ScratchJr research project, a collaboration between Tufts University's Developmental Technologies Research Group, MIT's Lifelong Kindergarten Group, and the Playful Invention Company. Over the past five years, dozens of ScratchJr prototypes have been designed and studied with over 300 K-2nd grade students, teachers and parents. ScratchJr allows children ages 5 to 7 years to explore concepts of computer programming and digital content creation in a safe and fun environment. This paper describes the progression of major prototypes leading to the current public version, as well as the educational resources developed for use with ScratchJr. Future directions and educational implications are also discussed.
KIBO robot demo: engaging young children in programming and engineering BIBAFull-Text 418-421
  Amanda Sullivan; Mollie Elkin; Marina Umaschi Bers
Robotics offers a playful and tangible way for young children to engage with technology and engineering concepts during their foundational early childhood years. This paper describes the development of KIBO, a newly created robotics kit for children ages 4-7 developed at Tufts University through funding from the National Science Foundation. Designed explicitly for very young children, the KIBO kit has gone through several design iterations based on feedback from teachers and children over the past three years. The newest version of KIBO allows young children to become engineers by constructing robots using motors, sensors, and craft materials. Children also become programmers by exploring sequences, loops, and variables. In line with screen-time recommendations for young children, KIBO is programmed to move using tangible programming blocks -- no computer, tablet, or screen required.
Spin: a photography turntable system for creating animated documentation BIBAFull-Text 422-425
  Tiffany Tseng
While project documentation can help young Makers showcase their learning, prototyping skills, and creativity, motivating documentation practices has remained a challenge. Current tools for photographing projects are often disruptive to the flow of creating a design project, and compiling documentation into a readable and sharable format can be time consuming. To address these issues, I introduce Spin, a photography turntable system for creating animated documentation. Spin consists of a motorized turntable that pairs with a mobile device to capture 360-degree views of a DIY project at a particular point in time. These photographs are compiled into an animation of the project called a spin. As a project is developed over time, spin animations are compiled into a set animation showcasing the evolution of the project. This paper describes the motivation for creating the Spin system, its current implementation, and a planned pilot study involving introducing the system to several Makerspaces across the United States for extended use.
Seen music: ambient music data visualization for children with hearing impairments BIBAFull-Text 426-429
  Jeeeun Kim; Swamy Ananthanarayan; Tom Yeh
In this paper, we propose a prototype of music visualization system that captures and records the music component into digital data form, and then displays the data in visual form for children with hearing impairments. The analog sound data of music played physically is scaled into a binary matrix and scalar values that is then used as data structures for transcribing the output. We designed a system that detects tune and speed from a physical violin, and demonstrated three tangible music visualizations that children see in their daily lives, employing a flowerpot, plants and a picture of frame. We describe how the data captured from physical musical instruments can be seen through these objects, and suggest future possibilities for interactive sound visualization in music education for children with hearing impairments.
Cyberchase shape quest: pushing geometry education boundaries with augmented reality BIBAFull-Text 430-433
  Iulian Radu; Ellen Doherty; Kristin DiQuollo; Betsy McCarthy; Michelle Tiu
Cyberchase Shape Quest is an augmented reality math app from PBS KIDS and THIRTEEN that exposes elementary-school children to three-dimensional immersive puzzle worlds, teaching geometry and engaging spatial cognition skills through the use of augmented reality (AR) technology. Designed for children 6-8 years old, the app features 3 games, Patch the Path, Feed the Critters and Hide & Seek. In Patch the Path, players to use a tablet device's camera and a printable game board to interact with 3D puzzles within five different virtual environments, over 30 different levels. While playing, children must engage their spatial memory, visualization, and planning skills to successfully complete each level of the game. In this demo, we focus mainly on Patch the Path, highlighting the game design and the roles of prototyping and formative research during development.
Odyssey: an interactive simulation to learn concepts of the solar system BIBAFull-Text 434-437
  Abhishek Chakraborty
Children of age group 10 to 14 face difficulties to understand the concepts of the Solar System as it is vast and beyond comprehension. There is no feasible scope for direct exposure. Astronomy kits are usually expensive to afford and the current means applied in Government schools fail to address this issue. Odyssey is an interactive virtual Solar System which helps children visualize concepts of scale and distance and various events, for instance, Eclipse and Lunar Phases. Odyssey creates a realistic simulation of the movement of the planets and various other events by taking into account the Planets' positions at a given time, their mass and the gravitational forces between them. Odyssey follows an approach where students figure out concepts by trial and error, by changing different values and seeing the effects in real-time thereby learning by doing.
Crafting technology with circuit stickers BIBAFull-Text 438-441
  Jie Qi; Andrew "bunnie" Huang; Joseph Paradiso
Chibitronics circuit stickers are a new toolkit for crafting with electronics. Circuit stickers are modular, flexible circuit components with conductive adhesive pads. They feel like stickers but behave like electronic units and can be stuck to any conductive connector, such as copper foil tape, conductive ink or conductive thread, to make circuits. The toolkit includes, LEDs, sensors, pre-programmed function generators and a programmable microcontroller. Along with the circuit stickers, we have also created a suite of educational support resources such as the Circuit Sticker Sketchbook, which contains lessons and activities for crafting circuits onto templates inside the book. In this paper we describe the design and initial public adoption of the Chibitronics circuit sticker toolkit.
Using computational manipulatives to support story construction by early and emergent readers BIBAFull-Text 442-444
  K. K. Lamberty; Isaac Smolund
Our objective is to give emergent readers an engaging, interactive learning experience to help develop their reading and early writing skills. To this end, we have created a software tool to help these learners develop better sight word recognition and reading ability. Our iPad application allows users to combine word tiles into sentences and stories and hear the results spoken aloud. It provides a creative way for children to interact with text. This paper describes the designs of both the student-facing and teacher-facing parts of our system.
Pencil code: block code for a text world BIBAFull-Text 445-448
  David Bau; D. Anthony Bau; Mathew Dawson; C. Sydney Pickens
Pencil Code is a block-based coding tool that helps beginners work with text-based web programming languages. It has been used to allow help first-time programmers of all ages create programs in JavaScript and CoffeeScript.
   Pencil Code allows students to toggle between text code and blocks freely. This approach allows students to transition smoothly from blocks to text as they become familiar with syntax. It also allows educators to create block vocabularies for specific lessons without working with an entirely new programming language.
MakerShoe: towards a wearable e-textile construction kit to support creativity, playful making, and self-expression BIBAFull-Text 449-452
  Majeed Kazemitabaar; Leyla Norooz; Mona Leigh Guha; Jon E. Froehlich
Electronic textile (e-textile) toolkits have been successful in broadening participation in STEAM-related activities, in expanding perceptions of computing, and in engaging users in creative, expressive, and meaningful digital-physical design. While a range of well-designed e-textile toolkits exist (e.g., LilyPad), they cater primarily to adults and older children and have a high barrier of entry for some users. We are investigating new approaches to support younger children (K-4) in the creative design, play, and customization of e-textiles and wearables without requiring the creation of code. This demo paper presents one such example of ongoing work: MakerShoe, an e-textile platform for designing shoe-based interactive wearable experiences. We discuss our two participatory design sessions as well as our initial prototype, which uses single-function magnetically attachable electronic modules to support circuit creation and the design of responsive, interactive behaviors.
LevelSpaceGUI: scaffolding novice modelers' inter-model explorations BIBAFull-Text 453-457
  Arthur Hjorth; Bryan Head; Corey Brady; Uri Wilensky
We present an interface for programming relationships between two or more NetLogo [18] models running concurrently. The interface is designed specifically to help high school aged novices explore and define computational relationships between agent-based models, and to investigate how prompting learners to reason about the relationships between complex systems may change how they reason about the systems individually.
Early math with Gracie & Friends™ demo: app-infused curriculum and teacher support for preschool BIBAFull-Text 458-461
  Jillian Orr; Louise Flannery; Ashley Lewis Presser; Phil Vahey; Sonja Latimore
This paper describes the Early Math with Gracie & Friends™ preschool math curriculum based on the four-year, National Science Foundation-funded Next Generation Preschool Math project. Our team developed and published eight iPad apps, 38 hands-on activities, a digital Teacher's Guide, and professional development modules to help preschool children learn foundational math concepts. Research showed significant learning gains in children who used the app-infused curriculum. Note: All materials and resources are available for free at first8studios.org.

Workshops

Innovations in interaction design & learning BIBAFull-Text 462-465
  June Ahn; Tamara Clegg; Jason Yip; Elizabeth Bonsignore; Jochen Rick
Many new technologies for children focus on fostering learning. However, designers and researchers often come from disparate traditions that either stress innovative design methodologies (e.g. participatory design) or rigorous examination of learning (e.g., design-based research). This workshop brings together researchers who are actively engaged in, or interested in, weaving together these research fields to develop usable, engaging, and innovative technologies that are also deeply grounded in theories of learning. We invite participants to submit position papers describing their work in progress. The goals of the workshop will be to better articulate the unique issues that arise at the intersection of interaction design and learning design, and develop an agenda for a next wave of research that draws a clear link between methodologies in these fields. All topic areas related to design, learning, and children are welcome.
Digital assessment and promotion of children's curiosity BIBAFull-Text 466-469
  Goren Gordon; Jamie Jirout; Susan Engel; Alicia Chang
This half-day IDC 2015 workshop focuses on children's curiosity and how novel digital technologies can help assess and promote it. Our goal is to explore the design, development, use and evaluation of new technologies for this purpose, in terms of: i) challenges in assessing children's curiosity; ii) different evaluation methodologies; iii) design approaches to promotion of curiosity; iv) cognitive and social aspects of curiosity and their interaction with these technologies.
Every child a coder?: research challenges for a 5-18 programming curriculum BIBAFull-Text 470-473
  Kate Howland; Judith Good; Judy Robertson; Andrew Manches
The current drive in many countries to teach computing, particularly programming, to all from an early age, has potential to empower and support children in creative and problem-solving tasks. However, there are a number of challenges in ensuring that computing curricula, tools and environments embody appropriate progression and engender motivation for the topic across the school years. This workshop will consider the key research challenges in learning coding throughout childhood, with contributions from developmental psychologists, educators, researchers of children's programming, and designers of developmentally appropriate technologies for children.
Balancing the needs of children and adults in the design of technology for children BIBAFull-Text 474-477
  Lettie Malan; Catalina Naranjo-Bock; Tejinder K. Judge
In the design of technology for children, many products hope to encourage ideal behavior. Goals or desired outcomes for children-oriented products, such as learning, exploration or self-expression, are often set by adults (e.g. parents, guardians, teachers). These adult goals are often considered alongside the goals and interests of children, but what happens when these are conflicting? It is common for technology creators to have to make choices that support or prioritize one set of goals over the other.
   In this workshop, we will be discussing real world case studies, as well as theoretical approaches used by researchers, designers, and academics to design technology for children between the ages of 5 and 14. The expected outcome of the workshop will be a set of principles to consider when balancing the needs of children and adults in the design of technology for children.