The innovation pilot "Chatter - a digital dialogue platform" explores two different digital variants of how we can talk to children about the design of their playgrounds. It is a pilot where we test a tool intended for quantitative data linked to verbs ("What is the most fun thing to do on a playground?") and test a more experimental tool where children can furnish a playground area with 3D objects in an AR app where the dialogue about how they think generates more qualitative data and insights that we (probably) do not get in a more structured form. We explore both tracks in parallel and examine how the two different types of input can create value in the conceptualization and design of new playgrounds and in the refurbishment of old ones. .
Children's voices need to be heard even more and it needs to be done with higher efficiency and greater clarity in what their voices get for the impact on their own city. We need to find new platforms to meet the city's children before the design of the environments in which they move. We have ongoing dialogues with the city's children on various issues concerning their outdoor environment. It is resource-intensive for both white-collar and white-collar workers, and there is not always room. We therefore want to develop the digital child dialogue with a focus on the children's places.
We believe that children who play on playgrounds know exactly what would be needed to make the playground even more fun, exciting, fun and challenging. The children are experts in play! We believe that a digital tool can help us prioritize in new constructions and refurbishments. We believe that this leads to the children gaining more influence over their own environment.
In a simple tool that we distribute via a website (works for computer, mobile, toad), the children can choose what is most fun to do on a playground by choosing five pictograms representing verbs of playful activities. The children make their choices together with an educator in a classroom, and in the educational conversation the children can explore what verbs are for something (we tested with year 3 who have just started talking about verbs) and talk more about play and what is fun.
Each child saves their choices and in the compilation we see which activities the children prioritize on the playground. Upscale in large quantities, we get a wide base with representation from different districts and ages.
We are currently testing a first version of the tool where we have made a number of pictograms. First we tested how the pictograms worked in themselves, then we explore how the clickable tool should look and work. Year 3 at Maria Parkskolan helps us in these steps, then we intend to scale up with more classes.
The AR variant
During the month of November, we enlisted the help of consultants from CGI who helped us build a first version of an AR app that we are now testing with children at school. The app, which is made for iPad and iPhone, provides the opportunity to exhibit 3D objects from the city's playgrounds on an area of 1.6 × 1.6 meters, which corresponds to 40 × 40 meters in reality. The children choose the objects they want on the playground and exhibit them as they see fit. 3-6 children work with 3-6 units around the same table and in the meantime we ask them questions and have a dialogue about design.
In the next step, we are outdoors and scale up the children's suggestions in real size. AR technology enables the placement of objects in real size on the site. The children can try to move around in the surface and we also have a dialogue with them - make them think aloud and ask questions about why they have made their choices in that way. It is possible to record the screen to see how the children move around in the surface. It is also possible to experience each other's constructions.
In this way, we explore new, fun and inspiring ways to get children to formulate their opinions.
During the autumn, the project made a Civictech Vinnova application. There we went on to the first selection, but fell on the finish line.