From TurnTalk to ClassTalk: the emergence of tangibles for class conversations in primary school classrooms

R. Gennari*, A. Melonio, M. Rizvi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Primary school curricula teach children conversation norms for promoting positive social interactions, such as turn-taking and turn reserving, while curricula discourage other aspects of conversations, such as overlapping in turns. However such norms are abstract and difficult to master. Recently, interactive tangible solutions (briefly, tangibles) have been used to sustain the scaffolding of conversation norms. This paper continues this line of investigation. It discusses how meta-design and action research complement each other and tackle trade-offs in designing tangibles for conversations in primary schools. It reports on the emergence and genesis of tangibles for class conversation, named ClassTalk. Then it focusses on usages and actions with ClassTalk in 2018 in primary school classes, and it discusses them in relation to children's and teachers' engagement and usages of tangibles. It concludes by reflecting on the entire experience, and considers trade-offs and lessons learnt for meta-design and action research, as well as for the design of such tangibles per se.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)88-107
Number of pages20
JournalBehaviour and Information Technology
Issue number1
Early online date14 May 2019
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2020


  • action research
  • children and teachers
  • Class conversation
  • meta-design
  • social interaction
  • tangible design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • General Social Sciences
  • Human-Computer Interaction


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