From: Ayal Goury
Submit: Post Field Note
Date: 23 Oct 1996
Remote Name: lang-lab-mac43.ucsc.edu
I'm sorry but I still don't know the name. It was a boy aged 7
Me and this child were trying to play the hangman program. From the excitement in his face I could tell the child very much enjoyed playing it. But when he would guess letters he would almost never try a vowel. This led me to believe that he didn't understand the structure of word i.e. consonants and vowels. So i asked him if he knew what vowels are and he said know. Time had then run out and Maurice came by giving the boy a paper and asking him to write a letter to the wizard. The boy asked for my help and we spent the last few minutes of the day trying to learn to spell Hello to the wizard. Needless to say the letter was not written because we didn't have time.
I wanted to continue on hangman with the boy but at the same time I wanted to teach him the vowels. The program is very difficult and since it is pre-programmed it is not aware of the users literacy level wheras I have a better idea. So I thought maybe I could get a paper and play hangm,an but with word more appropriate for his level. I don't really want to do that because the child likes the computer game so much, even if he gets hung.
The letter to the wizard was also an uncomfortable position. It would take forever to write one that says something as simple as "Hello Wizard I Like your games" But I don't want the child to feel bad because he can't write this letter. So where would I go from here.
These events are situations for which the goal is way out of the child's ZPD. But since the child has already seen the goal It is hard to steop aside and Say "I'm sorry you're not ready" What does one do?