Child-Robot Interaction to Integrate Reflective Storytelling into Creative Play

Layne Jackson Hubbard, Yifan Chen, Eliana Colunga, Pilyoung Kim, Tom Yeh

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

21 Scopus citations


When young children create, they are exploring their emerging skills. And when young children reflect, they are transforming their learning experiences. Yet early childhood play environments often lack toys and tools to scaffold reflection. In this work, we design a stuffed animal robot to converse with young children and prompt creative reflection through open-ended storytelling. We also contribute six design goals for child-robot interaction design. In a hybrid Wizard of Oz study, 33 children ages 4-5 years old across 10 U.S. states engaged in creative play then conversed with a stuffed animal robot to tell a story about their creation. By analyzing children's story transcripts, we discover four approaches that young children use when responding to the robot's reflective prompting: Imaginative, Narrative Recall, Process-Oriented, and Descriptive Labeling. Across these approaches, we find that open-ended child-robot interaction can integrate personally meaningful reflective storytelling into diverse creative play practices.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationC and C 2021 - Proceedings of the 13th Conference on Creativity and Cognition
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
ISBN (Electronic)9781450383769
StatePublished - 22 Jun 2021
Event13th Conference on Creativity and Cognition, C and C 2021 - Virtual, Online, Italy
Duration: 22 Jun 202123 Jun 2021

Publication series

NameACM International Conference Proceeding Series


Conference13th Conference on Creativity and Cognition, C and C 2021
CityVirtual, Online

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Owner/Author.


  • child-robot interaction
  • conversational agents
  • creativity support
  • reflection
  • storytelling


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