Xavier Diaz, 6, sits quietly, chair pulled close to his Dell laptop, playing “Alien Addition.” In this math arcade game, Xavier controls a pod at the bottom of the screen that shoots at spaceships falling from the sky. Inside each ship is a pair of numbers. Xavier’s goal is to shoot only the spaceship with numbers that are the sum of the number inside his pod.
But Xavier is just shooting every target in sight. Over and over. Periodically, the game gives him a message: “Try again.” He tries again.
[With thanks to muriel]