For our first Digital Schoolhouse activity at Northern Saints we chose to do something that fitted right into their space topic. Having explored the algorithms behind the classic Space Invaders arcade game we played a physical computing game called Alien Invasion where the children had to model the behaviours of the characters in the game. After a discussion of the roles in the games development industry we set out to recreate a classic text adventure. To set the scene we played The Hobbit – an old ZX Spectrum classic. The children worked in groups of three with each group having a story teller, graphic designer and programmer. Each group created a text based adventure game on a space theme using the Adventure Creator app. Games development is a great cross-curricular way to get your students writing for a purpose. The teacher commented that one boy in the class wrote more that morning than he had during the previous term.
Score one for using computer games as the lever to engage their interest.
We look forward to seeing the results.
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