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AHA! Island Media and Hands-On Activity Sets: A Formative Research Report

March 12, 2019 | Media and Technology

AHA! Island is a new project that uses animation, live-action videos, and hands-on activities to support joint engagement of children and caregivers around computational thinking concepts and practices. This research is intended to examine the extent to which the prototyped media and activity sets support the project’s learning goals. Education Development Center (EDC), WGBH’s research partner for the project, conducted a small formative study with 16 English-speaking families (children and their caregivers) to test out these media and activity set prototypes. During the in-person video viewing session, researchers showed children one of four possible media sets, each related to a CT concept, and engaged in an interview protocol immediately following viewing. During the hands-on activity session, caregivers reviewed a hands-on activity prototype, conducted the activity with their child, and participated in an interview upon completion. Following the activity session, caregivers were given a tablet with additional media and hands-on activities related to the same CT topic, and were asked to use these materials at home with their children over a one-week period. At the end of the week, a researcher conducted a phone interview to gather caregiver reflections on the at-home experience.


  • REVISE logo
    Principal Investigator
  • Heather Lavigne
    Co-Principal Investigator
  • REVISE logo
    Project Manager
  • Leslie Cuellar
  • Citation


    Funding Program: AISL
    Award Number: 1612642
    Funding Amount: $3,000,000.00
    Resource Type: Evaluation Reports
    Discipline: Computing and information science | Education and learning science | Mathematics | Technology
    Audience: Pre-K Children (0-5) | Families | Parents/Caregivers | Museum/ISE Professionals
    Environment Type: Media and Technology | Broadcast Media | Websites, Mobile Apps, and Online Media
    Access and Inclusion: Ethnic/Racial | Black/African American Communities | Hispanic/Latinx Communities | Low Socioeconomic Status

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