Enacting orbits: Refining the design of a full-body learning simulation

Michael Tscholl, Robb Lindgren, Emily Johnson

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Interactive and immersive digital environments offer promising avenues for embodied interaction - learning by enacting concepts through one's body. These environments have the potential to generate intuitive forms of understanding about processes and principles in areas such as science. More needs to be known, however, about how to design systems that effectively elicit both the desired physical actions and the relevant conceptions, such that they become amenable for change. In this paper we describe the design of a full-body simulation environment where students are tasked to enact trajectories of a virtual asteroid projected onto the floor. The paper presents preliminary analyses of semi-structured interviews that allow insights into how the experience of "creating an orbit" shaped the participants' developing understanding about orbital motion, the role of gravity, and general principles about how things move in space. An initial evaluation of the effectiveness of the design and future work is discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of IDC 2013 - The 12th International Conference on Interaction Design and Children
Number of pages4
StatePublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes
Event12th International Conference on Interaction Design and Children, IDC 2013 - New York, NY, United States
Duration: Jun 24 2013Jun 27 2013

Publication series

NameACM International Conference Proceeding Series


Other12th International Conference on Interaction Design and Children, IDC 2013
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNew York, NY


  • Embodied Interaction
  • Learning
  • Middle School
  • Mixed Reality
  • Science Education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Software


Dive into the research topics of 'Enacting orbits: Refining the design of a full-body learning simulation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this