For research assignment, I picked a paper from Proceedings of ACM IDC11 Interaction Design and Children called Evaluating technology that makes physical games for children more engaging. The paper is somewhat relevant to the project Winnie and I are building.
The authors wish to explore one of the two learning objective in kinesthetic literacy, learning to move. They found out that interactive technologies incorporated in a physical sport helps get players more engaged. And people that played it well will most likely pick up the sport in real life. Few pre-existing successful materials that embrace these ideas are Splashball, Remote Impact, and PingPongPlus.
The game proposed was for user to throw toys toward a display screen. An image shows up when the toy hits the screen and eventually create a digital collage of all the toys in the end.
Some findings through play-test:
1. Children throw differently with a physical object in hand rather than a virtual one
2. Using alternative soft toys instead of hard bouncing balls help eliminate risk of injury and distraction from their end goal
3. Adding element to create personal connections with the children motivate them more
4. Keeping the interaction simple so players of all physical abilities can play.
5. Giving feedback on their hand position, throw velocity etc helps player reflect on their progress or skills