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Face 2 Face

on 29 January 2015

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Transcript of Aliyah

A Day in the Life of
It's the first Monday of the Easter Holiday and Aliyah has had a lie in until about 9am. She then had breakfast and got washed and dressed, and since then she has been watching television in the living room (a football programme that her brother is watching.)

Aliyah's mum and siblings are around the house, but her dad is currently at work.
11:00am - Holiday morning
11:35am - Homework and revision
11:55am - Checking Twitter and 'Procrastination'
Whilst on the laptop Aliyah occasionally flicks to Twitter for a quick glance. I ask her what sort of things she looks for when reading through her Twitter feed, she looks a little guilty and says 'just tweets'. I ask if it's a treat between bits of homework and she laughs and tells me 'I procrastinate a lot!'
12:20pm - Watching YouTube
Aliyah switches to YouTube. She watches a video of Nash Grier - a young American YouTuber. Grier asks his four-year old sister various questions, such as what her favourite colour is and how many people she thinks will watch the video. One of Aliyah's older sisters comes into the room and watches the video from the edge of the bed.
12:50pm - Celebrity 'stalking'
Whilst they're watching YouTube videos, Aliyah excitedly tells her sister that the boy band Overload will be at Leicester Square next month and that she wants to go and meet them. Her sister tells her she might be able to go if someone gives her a lift. Aliyah tells her sister about a friend that regularly goes to meet bands and celebrities. She describes how her friend 'stalks' bands to find out when their flights are so that she meet them at the airport.
1:05pm - YouTube and prayer time
Aliyah and her sister begin to watch videos of the band Union J doing a mock 'Come Dine With Me'. The sisters joke about how terrible the band members' cooking is and complain that some are scoring the others too harshly. Aliyah's youngest sister comes into the room and tells them that it's prayer time. Aliyah and her older sister say 'one minute' as there's just 'one more video'.
1:20pm - Family lunch
After prayers Aliyah helps her mother set up the dining table. Various dishes are laid out, including a large bowl of white rice, curried chicken, beef, fish and fish eggs, as well as a tray of spicy pickled vegetables. We sit down to eat and the family break up the tender meat with their fingers and pack it into balls of rice, mopping up the spiced marinade.
2:40pm - Going shopping
Aliyah and one of her sisters leave the house to go shopping for baking ingredients. As we walk to the bus stop it starts to rain. We miss a bus but thankfully the bus has a shelter.
3:20pm - Work experience
The shopping centre is busy with families and teenagers. Aliyah's first stop is Boots where she needs to drop off her work experience uniform. Although Aliyah enjoyed doing work experience at Boots she feels a bit embarrassed going back to return the uniform. Afterward, Aliyah and her sister browse a number of homeware stores. Aliyah says that their father is going to have the loft of their house converted into a new bedroom for her this summer. In Wilko Aliyah and her sister look various sheets and cushions that might look good in her loft conversion room.
3:55pm - Browsing for clothes
Aliyah and her sister head to USC and have a look at some 'All Stars' converse trainers. They spend a bit of time discussing which ones they like which ones they don't like. Aliyah likes the ones with quite vibrant colours and designs. In Primark Aliyah spots a bright t-shirt with a colourful 'lollipops and ice-creams' pattern on it that she really likes and says 'how cool is that?' According to Aliyah's sister, Aliyah's favourite colour at the moment is 'mint'.
3:27pm - Baking ingredients
This half term Aliyah and her sister are planning to bake some 'cake pops' together, and today they are collecting ingredients and equipment. First they head to Asda to find some ingredients for their baking, including chocolate spread. Afterward they head to Poundand to see if they can find any baking utensils and cake pop sticks. At the checkout the shop assistant jokes that they should bring in their cake pops to share with the staff and the sisters both laugh.
Methodology Moment:
Sitting with Aliyah whilst she did her homework required that an extra chair be brought in for the researcher to sit on. Rather than sitting over Aliyah's shoulder, the researcher decided to sit on the opposite side of the room to Aliyah so that he would disturb her as little as possible.
Upstairs in her room Aliyah gets on with her homework. Aliyah is working from a GCSE Bitesize revision book and occasionally writes and draws in an exercise book. In the next room her youngest brother is sat watching cartoons and can be heard giggling occasionally. After awhile, Aliyah switches onto a website called SAM learning and completes some online mock exam questions.
You can read more about young people's use of YouTube in Patricia Lange's book 'Kids on YouTube: Technical Identities and Digital Literacies' (2014) See: http://www.lcoastpress.com/book.php?id=500
The bus is quite busy but we find seats on the lower deck. Just before we're due to get off an inspector comes on board to check everyone's tickets. Once we get off the bus we head straight indoors into the shopping centre.
Methodology Moment:
In the shopping centre it felt more awkward to record sounds and take pictures. Although the shopping centre is a public space, the sense of surveillance within the space made the researcher feel more conspicuous carrying recording equipment.
4:10pm - Heading home
After Primark the sisters decide to head home with their shopping. It's the end of my day with Aliyah and she says she's not going to be up to much else today. We say goodbye and I leave them as they wait for the next bus home.

Below you can find out more about Aliyah, including her favourite objects from her past and the present.
Favourite Things
From the past: A Tamagotchi
Aliyah's favourite object from her past is a Tamagotchi she got for her 7th birthday from her parents. She says that

"no one knows about Tamagotchis now, but back then it was really like everyone had it, and it was something really big to have. Now everyone has really big phones and gadgets and stuff, but this was like a gadget at the that time, everyone had a Tamagotchi."
Listen to Aliyah talking about her Tamagotchi here!
Keeping a memory box
Aliyah keeps her Tamagotchi and other special objects from her past in a memory box. This includes her old school uniform tie and other bits and pieces. Aliyah was inspired to put the memory box together after watching a video by YouTuber 'Jacksgap'.
Watch the Jacksgap video that inspired Aliyah
From the present: Her mobile phone
Aliyah's most important object right now is her mobile phone. Although she's really happy with her current phone, she hopes that her older brother will buy her an iPhone for her next birthday so that she can download apps like Vine and Snapchat.

“I chose my phone because, well, right now I can’t live without my phone, I can’t imagine myself living without my phone in like ten years. I can’t imagine myself living without a phone so, yeah, I had to choose my phone.”
Listen to Aliyah talking about her mobile phone here!
'Starbucks queen'
Aliyah's phone case has a big logo of Starbucks coffee shop on the back. After school or on weekends Aliyah and her friends will meet at Starbucks before going onto somewhere else, such as bowling. Aliyah describes one of her friends as a 'Starbucks queen':

"my friend Lisa, she always goes, she’s like the Starbucks queen, she knows everything about Starbucks. So sometimes after school she wants to go Starbucks and if anyone wants to go with her then, yeah. I didn’t go yesterday, but yesterday they went Starbucks and bowling, so we always end up going Starbucks"

Aliyah typing on the laptop keyboard and her younger brother watching cartoons in the next room.
The sound of the clock in Aliyah's room and her brother's cartoons in the next room.
Aliyah and her older sister watching YouTube videos.
The boy band 'Overload'
Aliyah watching YouTube videos.
Aliyah and her sisters watching Union J's YouTube videos
The sound of food being prepared in the kitchen.
The sound of the heavy rain and traveling on the bus.
The sound of the busy shopping centre.
The sound of the shopping centre.
The sound of the shopping centre
This multimedia document represents a 'day in the life' of Aliyah (aged 14 years) and was recorded on Monday 7th April 2014. The day was recorded by a researcher as part of the 'Face 2 Face' project, using a range of sound, visual and written materials. Aliyah's name and other personal details about her life have been anonymised.

'Face 2 Face' is an ESRC funded research project (2013-14), jointly organised by the Universities of Sussex, Brighton and the Open University. You can find out more about the project here:
Introduction & Navigation Information
Navigation information:

You can explore this multimedia document either in 'presentation' mode - which presents a chronological account of the young person's day - or by moving around the document by scrolling and zooming with your trackpad or touchscreen.

You can interact with multimedia content along the way by zooming in on pictures and playing video content. Audio clips (where available) will play automatically on each slide.


Methodology Moment:
Offers an insight into some of the methodological issues that arose during the course of the research.
Provides a short description of the sound playing in the background.
Offers suggestions for further reading
Aliyah describes her day so far to the researcher
Full transcript