Throughout the many many showings I’ve hosted at The Eureka Room, I’ve noticed that some personality types prefer for certain programs. People who might be marginally participatory in the earlier programs get way more into Turkey Volcano. People who like chaos prefer the earlier programs.
Obviously I’m not doing a full personality test for everyone (or anyone) that walks through the door, so this is just a hypothesis, but I think there’s a spectrum of playfulness for people. And that it should be taken into account in designing programs and activities.
On the far left end is “unstructured play” and on the other, “structured play”. The Eureka Room is designed more for the unstructured (or mostly unstructured) play folks.
People preferring structured play need rules and clear goals. Winning is important. Status amongst strangers is needed to be established. Appearance is important. Structured-play guests are better dressed. When the Eureka Room experience is done, they ask questions more related to the business of running the Eureka Room.
Those preferring the unstructured play can follow the rules but aren’t the best at paying attention to the rules when explained to them. They get far more excited when they are given some loose guidelines and are invited (explicitly or implicitly) to express themselves through play. Rather than determining status with others, they seem to prefer a “yes and” collaborative attitude with strangers. When the experience is over, they keep it going and end it in their own time.
I don’t think that people land on just one point of the spectrum, though. Some people can navigate a wide swath of it. I think those that have a wider range have more fun.