Process for creating
Greatest Places games
How students created
were introduced to the Greatest Places (Amazon, Greenland, Iguazu Falls,
Madagascar, Namib, Okavango, and Tibet) by way of a standard wall map
and asked to offer their knowledge of each place. Next, students were
given time to browse the Greatest Places Online, to familiarize themselves
with the media available to them. The students were given a quick overview
of MicroWorlds and also shown student examples of MicroWorlds projects.
Away from computers, they created a storyboard for design and interactivity,
and finally went back to the computer to create their games, where they
collected and imported media from the Greatest Places Online web site.
MicroWorlds is a low-cost multimedia authoring program designed for
kids that uses the LOGO programming language as its base. The application
environment consists of a background or stage area upon which virtual
"turtles" or sprites interact with each other, mouse clicks,
background colors and can be controlled by variables, buttons and custom
LOGO commands. Sound files, music files, and video can also be imported
of MicroWorlds LOGO is a variation of straight LOGO but quite similar.
One starts with a definition of a procedure, defines the parameters for
that procedure, then declares an end to the procedure.
repeat 50 [fd 10 rt 90]
tells the turtle, named "turtle.one", to repeat 50 times the
act of going forward 10 pixels and turning right 90 degrees.)
Students were encouraged
to create their own procedures and to collaborate with classmates on programming,
rather than having the instructor complete the problem solving for them.
The class size was seven to eight students with eight Windows95 PCs;
there was one instructor leading the class and one classroom assistant.
Day to day
Classes ran Monday to Friday at 3 hours per day, either 9 to 12 or 1 to