Brenda López Silva

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This paper describes a frequently-overlooked aspect of embodied interaction design: physical effort. Although exertion is the <i>direct</i> goal of many embodied activities (e.g., exergames), and is used <i>indirectly</i> to discourage certain user interactions (as with affordances), exertion has not been used to support direct expressive interaction with(More)
The broadening array of technologies available to support the design of classroom activity has the potential to reshape science learning in schools. This paper presents a ubiquitous computing application, WallCology, which situates a virtual ecosystem within the unseen space of classroom walls, presenting affordances for science learners to engage in(More)
Researchers and practitioners have studied how technology can support visitors' learning in science centers, but few have considered technology specifically designed for science center docents; the staff that explains and interprets exhibits to visitors. We present a qualitative, exploratory study at a zoo where we designed and evaluated technological(More)
There is a growing interest in learning studies about the use of interaction models that involve sensorimotor activities and affordances within an educational experience. This paper explores how concrete experiences, in this case an educational application designed for an Interactive Slide, can make concepts of buoyancy and Archimedes' principle(More)
In consecutive years, a fifth grade teacher of a self-contained classroom enacted five-week Earth sciences units that included learning activities focusing on the interpretation of seismograms and the location of earthquake epicenters. In one class, the unit utilized an embedded design that situated learners within the spatial and temporal extent of the(More)
This paper describes an empirical study conducted to explore the expressive design space for what we dub "effortful interaction." Effortful interaction is a form of human-computer interaction where different degrees of physical effort are intentionally incorporated into the interaction design in order to communicate information. In this sense effortful(More)
This paper describes the design and pilot enactment of an instructional unit for elementary school students, <i>Hunger Games</i>, which centers on development of learner understandings of animal foraging behavior. Inspired by traditional teaching practices employing physical simulations, within the unit students engage in an embodied enactment of foraging(More)
The National Center for Learning and Teaching in Nanoscale Science and Engineering was established to conduct research on how to effectively introduce emergent sciences into K-16 classrooms, using nanoscale science and engineering (NSE) as an example. One of the NCLT's main goals is to develop an approach to map out the knowledge domains (constructs)(More)
Several simulation environments exist that create a place in which students can explore scientific phenomena. In this paper, we propose design guidelines for creating a classroom environment that puts scientific concepts directly into that physical space. We examine the results of two implementations of WallCology, which we characterize as an embedded(More)
The propagation of Inquiry Based Learning has lead to many more elementary students interacting with authentic scientific tools and practices. However, the more problematic realities of scientific data collection, such as noise and large data sets, are often deliberately hidden from students. Students will need to confront these realities and be able to(More)