Turn-Taking, Children, and the Unpredictability of Fun

  • Jill Fain Lehman Disney Research
  • Iolanda Leite Disney Research


When the goal is entertainment, designing language-based interactions between characters and small groups of young children is a balancing act. On the one hand, an autonomous character should support the freedom of expression and natural behaviors of children having fun. On the other hand, an autonomous character is only capable of supporting the activity it’s designed for and the behavior it anticipates. In the last five years we have watched this tension between freedom and constraint play out in hundreds of small groups in a variety of activities. Using two of the activities as examples, we chart the ups and downs of turn-taking and other language behaviors along the Fun Curve.
How to Cite
Lehman, J. F., & Leite, I. (2017). Turn-Taking, Children, and the Unpredictability of Fun. AI Magazine, 37(4), 55-62. https://doi.org/10.1609/aimag.v37i4.2685