Replayables are open play activities intended for early and middle childhood age groups and possibly early preadolescents as well. Replayables resemble puzzles and games, though each is designed without instructions, rules, or predefined linear solutions. Rather, each Replayable can be played and replayed with new variation that each player or group of players brings through experimentation and modification.
Replayables hope to offer a framework that engages children through intuitive discovery, building core abstract concepts that can be applied to real world problem solving later in life. Replayables don’t teach, they allow children to learn. Each activity is purposefully designed to allow personal play but also encourage cooperative and collaborative group play through simple modular board designs and feature limitation. In other words, each Replayable can facilitate even more possibilities and variations when it is joined together physically with others. Variety is initially limited to individual players in the form of colors and functionality that encourage players to trade and combine resources.
Each activity is made of simple materials like paper, cardboard, or string and can serve as templates for local reproduction with available materials.
Replayables strive to find a gender-neutral ground and ranges of complexity that allow access for the youngest of players as well as advanced level interpretation. Some Replayables may show promise for children with disabilities where tactile play could offer access to the visually impaired.
Seen here are a few early stage prototypes that focus on a few concepts including modularity, procedural thinking, associative hierarchies, and polymorphism.
Further research and development will include subsequent prototyping with initial user testing followed by late-stage prototype candidates tested with children in Uganda.