Category Archives: THESIS

Workshop part III – 14 primary school children

Why? The aim for this workshop is get primary school children’s input on how they like to play, what they think is important when you play and how you play with someone who is older. The outcome of this workshop will be lists of different games and activities and drawings of how Rut and Karl could play.

The workshop with the primary school children has a slightly different set-up as they are both older and a larger amount of children. 14 children participated in the workshop. We are also limited to one workshop opportunity and I decided to take out the book section and just focus on play and how you can play when someone is in bed.

This session is more focused on writing and less crafty but their first task was to cut out the badge and then fill it in.

We are still dealing with the main subject of play. In three different ways; list of top 10 games, what is important when you play? and how do you play with someone who is 60 years of age?

To suit the amount of children I created some workshop sheets to work around for this first part.

To start the role-play session I read the narrative with Rut and Karl, now slightly changed to fit their games and interest. The children were asked to write and draw their suggestions for how Rut and Karl could play. Some of the children were participating in the role play and some were watching. We ended the session by everyone saying their suggestions and showing their drawings.

What worked?

The workshop set up sheets were suitable for the amount of children. 7 year old children are well able to write and draw by themselves if the have clear directions. The children were very generative and had so many ideas and suggestions which was so cool. They engaged and liked the tasks. The children loved how the narrative was hinting at them and they were listening very carefully.

What didn’t work?

It is impossible to facilitate the workshop with 14 children and document in a satisfying way at the same time. I could have left out the role playing bit also. They understood the narrative very well and it would have been enough to just draw and discuss it I think. The printer didn’t work in the morning which resulted in that I couldn’t hand over the diplomas. This didn’t feel good at all.

What did I learn

Never ever trust technology! A printer simply doesn’t work when you want it to. Always, always, always have a back up in black and white. It always works out. It might not be perfect but in some way it always turns out to be a ok in the end and it is always fun when you work with children!

Workshop Part II – How could you play around the bed?

Why? The aim of the next workshop session is to get more specific input on how you could play if you had to play when one is situated in bed.


As the previous workshop the children are initially asked to fill in the special sign with their name and age. This time I made the signs white so that they could color them in themselves.

To facilitate this session a narrative with two persons are initially presented. The two characters are created from the previous session to fit their insights on how to play with someone who is older. The story is about Rut and Karl and goes like this:

I want to tell you about Rut and Karl. Rut and Karl are good friends. Karl is almost always wearing his dotted scarf and Rut her red hat. Rut is 62 years old and Karl is 5 years old and they play together often. The play a little bit of everything. For example drawing, play games, lego  and read or look in books together. They think that is fun! Karl likes Star Wars and animal books and Rut likes to count things in the books.

When it was cold outside, Rut fell and broke her leg. Typical! Rut has a plaster and has to stay in bed and rest for 3 weeks. Karl and Rut have a problem now and they need our help. It is not as easy to play when one has to stay in bed. Do you know how they could play if one is in bed?

Jag vill berätta för er om Rut och Karl. Rut och Karl är bra kompisar.  Karl har nästan alltid på sig sin prickiga halsduk och Rut sin röda hatt. Rut är 62 år gammal och Karl är 5 år och dom leker ofta med varandra. Dom brukar leka med lite allt möjligt. T.ex. rita, spela spel, leka med lego och läsa eller titta i böcker tillsammans. Det tycker dom är kul! Karl tycker mest om Star wars och djurböcker. Rut tycker om att räkna saker i böckerna.

När det var halt ute ramlade Rut och bröt ena benet. Typiskt! Nu har Rut gips och måste ligga i sängen och vila benet i tre veckor. Karl och Rut  har ett problem nu, det är inte lika lätt att leka och de behöver vår hjälp. Hur kan man leka om den ena måste ligga i sängen? Har ni några förslag på hur man kan leka när den ena måste ligga i sängen?

After the narrative the children gave their ideas of what you could play. doctor, make up a new game, hairdresser, play still/ calm games, play games, nintendo, petshop game, svart petter (card), draw on the cast, finger dolls and chess.

Like a role play session we are then all imagining what it is like to have a broken leg or to sit around the bed. This workshop discussion is taking place around a sofa. Props are used for this session to create excitement about the characters and empathy of the situation. We are using a red hat and dotted scarf and a cast that you put on when you are Rut or Karl. The cast prototype is made from soft fabric and filling. By using a couple of selected toys or we are taking turns and acting out how this could be solved in a suitable way.

After their expert contribution they all received a medallion which they appreciated very much.


The narrative and props worked very well. The children was very engaged by the similarity in the story and themselves. When we started the role play they were all very excited and at times a bit too excited and we had to constrain it a little bit to two children participating in the role play at one time and then taking turns. Also the value of making some concrete tasks and some loose is crucial for a good dynamics. I have learned so much from these two sessions. Kids are the best collaborators! Tomorrow I will have a new workshop with 18 primary school children. We will handle the same topics but in a slightly different way.




Workshop week 9. 1,5h x2 (pre school children and primary school)

Why? The aim of the workshop is to get inspiration and ideas from children on how the like to play and what is important to them on this matter, as well as to find out what they think about books.

The workshop is planned to be a dynamic mix of discussion and tasks. To make them understand that their insights are very important the warm up is to fill in and complete special signs with name, age and to put it on our shirts. They are the extended and most important team members of this project and it is important to treat them accordingly. The aim for my set up is to “make them feel like experts” and to “treat their views with the same respect you would show an adult research participant” as suggested as one of the basics in working with children in the IDEO Method Deck Junior Cards (IDEO 2010).


• Introduction: Jag heter Stina och jag är 28 år gammal och jag jobbar med ett topphemligt projekt som handlar om lek. Jag har fått höra  ni är väldigt bra att leka och jag är här för att få er experthjälp.

• Name tag making, expert….name….age? (10min)

• What do you like to play? (5 min)

• Could you get that artefact or show that play? (15 min)

• What is important when you play? (5min)

• How do you play with a grown up? (10 min)


• Could you tell me what a book is? What do you do with a book? Favorite book? How and where do you read that book? (5 min)

• If you were to make a book, what would it look like and what would you do with it? (5 min)

• Task: Could you draw/make it? (20- min) papper och tyg i olika färger och massa pennor


4 chosen ones

will participate in my ethnographic study. How do I recruit them? Was the subject for the brain I facilitated today with three of my lovely classmates.

We warmed up with waiting sites and situations. And moved over to each one pretending to have one of the characteristics. Hate waiting, love waiting, feel like the wait a lot and one that tend to daydream while waiting. Four ideas was chosen for how to recruit.

May 2011……

….my thesis report will be delivered. After a discussion with Birgitta Cappelen my third advisor I was to think about what it will be in the end.

As a design student extremely interested in design research, I am constantly struggling with how to communicate the research I do in an academic yet playful way. As my thesis will deal with a lot of human factors research I am already looking at how to display this in the end. There will be a lot of data, interviews. I see a book as a good forum to explain this. But I plan to have my report as an audio book with pictures and audio. This book will be represented as a scaled up interactive version in the final exhibition. The audio will be triggered depending on what spread is up. The book installation features RFID and video tracking. My thesis report will then be an academic script!


So back in Sweden and its time that I start playing with my thesis. I will do cultural probing shortly to get inspiration and opinions on how people feel about queuing and waiting. Still have no idea what will come out of this topic and it scars me a bit to be honest. At times I find it challenging and that it could come something interesting out of it and sometimes I just find it crazy uninteresting. There are a couple of other ideas that I could work with but then I have more or less an idea of what the outcome could be and I don’t want to play it safe. I was involved in Idas cultural probe last year in Oslo and got some inspiration from that. Read Gerry Gaffney’s text on the topic also and will focus a bit extra on the kit since  “People respond positively to attractive kits, so using good quality materials is worthwhile”. I have handpicked 12 people around me in different situations and age groups to get a good range of the outcome. Their waiting/queuing kit will involve a little book with questions, a camera, a pen, a glue stick, maybe 20 kronor (to see what you could spend them on while waiting and some gum or something like that to show appreciation and give energy to the probe. Maybe I should design a waiting snack actually. Since the one time cameras look shit I have decided to designa new package for them. I am aware though that since I haven’t yet narrowed down and the questions are  not set the optimal way, that I might not get what I expect. But I feel now that the process needs to get going now. I will also do a future forecasting on the subject.

I can’t believe how long it takes me to get going on the probes, it is now beginning of march and I’m still working on the camera lay out. Next week they will be send out.

So now the first probe is finally send out to Mahmoud who is going to Iran for a couple of weeks. I hope to get some new perspectives on how we wait.