Summer 2016 Think Tank

In summer 2016, the Learning Games Lab offered public sessions for students entering the 5th, 6th, and 7th grades.

  • Session 1: Monday, June 6 - Friday, June 10, 8:30am-12:00pm

Creation In Storytelling Apps: In this session consultants explored the affordances of various creative tools. For a final project, they researched New Mexico destinations and showcased their findings via storytelling apps and animation. Before creating their own storyboards, they reviewed storyboards from previous Media Productions projects and viewed current storyboards from designers. They also learned about finding and evaluating research information and Creative Commons images online. In addition to the final project, the consultants explored various content apps and animation tools.

  • Session 2: Monday, June 20 - Friday, June 24, 8:30-12:00pm

Math Games: The consultants in this session worked with the Math Snacks team and developed their expertise with math games. Playing a variety of math board games, apps, and computer games and participating in group activities, they analyzed design features of games and learned how to convey these ideas to their peers. Consultants also took part in math activities on expression and patterns with members of the Math Snacks team and teacher collaborators. Feedback from the consultants will be used to help the Math Snacks team build the next iteration of games and animations. For their final project, the consultants worked in groups to offer guidelines to a specific audience for recommendations about math games.

  • Session 3: Monday, July 11 - Friday, July 15, 8:30-12:00pm

Exploring Game Genres: This session focused on examining the affordances of technologies for gaming. Consultants played on iPads, computers, and game systems such as the Atari, Wii, WiiU, and GameCube, in the areas of science, math, and arcade. Accessing games via various platforms helped consultants conceptualize and discuss what makes gameplay good, such as character and story, input devices (touch screen and joystick, for example), and challenge. These gameplay experiences and group activities built the foundation for their final project, in which consultants compared two similar games in the areas of user-control, flow, and character in story.