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Magic Land: the design and evaluation of an interactive tabletop supporting therapeutic play with children

Lookup NU author(s): Olga Pykhtina, Dr Madeline Balaam, Gavin Wood, Dr Sue Pattison, Dr Ahmed KharrufaORCiD, Professor Patrick OlivierORCiD


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We consider the role and design of digital technologies in play therapy settings with young children. Through an aggregation of the researcher and practitioner literature, and results of discussions with therapists and counselors, we propose a set of design requirements for digital technologies that support non-directive play within a play therapy context. We explore how to design for these complex requirements through the development and evaluation of Magic Land, a set of four play therapy applications for an interactive tabletop. Based on our experiences we recommend that designers create digital interactive toys, which create opportunities for play that would not normally be possible within the traditional play therapy environment.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Pykhtina O, Balaam M, Wood G, Pattison S, Kharrufa A, Olivier P

Publication type: Conference Proceedings (inc. Abstract)

Publication status: Published

Conference Name: DIS 2012: Proceedings of the Designing Interactive Systems Conference

Year of Conference: 2012

Pages: 136-145

Publisher: ACM Press


DOI: 10.1145/2317956.2317978

Library holdings: Search Newcastle University Library for this item

ISBN: 9781450312103