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The games in the lefthand column are as follows, from top to bottom: Strategy Challenges of the World Collection 1, Operation Neptune, Math Workshop, Math Heads, Math Blaster, Logical Journey of the Zoombinis, The Incredible Machine, and Escape From Dimension Q.

The games in the lefthand column are as follows, from top to bottom: Strategy Challenges of the World Collection 1, Operation Neptune, Math Workshop, Math Heads, Math Blaster, Logical Journey of the Zoombinis, The Incredible Machine, and Escape From Dimension Q.

Half of the group viewed the graphs which showed the girls' and boys' ratings of the games. A researcher (A) led a discussion with students about what they noticed about the graphs...

--A: What are some of the things that you notice about these graphs? ... What would you say was the game that the girls liked the best?

--J1: Math Heads.

--A: Math Heads. Why do you think Math Heads?

--J1: 'cause there's an awful lot of names on Math Heads.

--A: So you think that a lot of people played the game Math Heads. Any other reason why Math Heads might be a favorite of the girls? ... Well this is the rating down here, 1 was the best, 5 was the worst, and there's a lot of girls who gave Math Heads a 1. So that's another reason why. ... What other games were rated pretty well for the girls? What's the sort of second highest...?

--J1: Operation Neptune. And then the rest are tied, pretty much tied.

--A: That's a pretty good reading of the graph. Operation Neptune got 3 1's and a lot of, T. gave it a bunch of scores between 1 and half and 2 and a half. It got the second most 1 ratings out of all the games that the girls played.

--G: Nobody likes Math Blaster.

--A: Nobody likes Math Blaster is a pretty good observation. Only one person played it of the girls and she only gave it a 2. How about of the boys? What did the boys think of Math Blaster?

--?: They didn't like it.

--A: Well it got a 1, both of the people that played it got a 1 but not many people played it. What would you think is the boys' favorite game?

--J2: Incredible Machine...

--J1: Second would be Operation Neptune like the girls had second for Operation Neptune.

--J2: ...[because] there are a ton of names on number 1.

--A: A ton of people gave it a rating of 1. And Operation Neptune has the second most people giving it a 1? Any other, what was the least favorite game of the boys?

--J2: Math Workshop and Strategy Challenges.

--A: Mm hm. Because why?

--J2: Because only two people played.

--A: And they didn't give it a 1.

--A: If you look at the two charts, in general, do you have any general comments about how they look? ... ... About how the names are distributed around on the piece of paper? ...

--M (another researcher): Well did we already notice all this white space on the boys? (No.) I'm wondering how come the girls have colored pieces of paper all over theirs and none of the boys ever gave a game a 5 or a 4 or a 3 or any of the halves even. I thought that was interesting when I noticed that. What do you guys think about that?

--J1: The girls that rated them a 5 don't like those games very much. (Mm hm.) And a lot of people rated it in a 5 and after 2. ... [and] I guess the boys just like the games more than them.

--M: So you think the boys just like all the games? ... What do you think, why do you think the boys just only gave 1's and 2's? ... Do you have any different ideas? ... Someone looked at it at work, we had them hanging up at work when we were making them, and said well maybe the girls are pickier about games, they just are more particular about which games they like and don't like. But then somebody else said well maybe you guys brought lots of boy kinds of games, like games that boys like.

--J1: Boys rated more on the bright side of games, girls rated more on the on the um negative side of the games.

--M: More on the bright side, so you think boys were looking at the pieces that they like of the games? (nods) That's a different idea, haven't heard that one. T: [thinks boys] just didn't think about it.

--A: So you think boys just rated them quickly.

--Z: If I ever played Math Workshop (the game he didn't try) then Bang! I'd be down at 5.

--M: So Z. has a different idea. He didn't play Math Workshop and ... had he played Math Workshop he probably would given it a 5 but because he knew he wouldn't like it he didn't even play it at all. So that's one idea.

--Z: Since the boys played the games they would like in first and second place but the rest they don't play.

--A: They just didn't bother.

--Z: Yes.

last modified October 1998

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