Archive for February, 2012
Ryerson alumnus Liam O’Donnell is an elementary school teacher for the Toronto District School Board. He recently wrote about his experience of creating a multiplayer Minecraft server that spanned across 3 schools using server space at the EDGE Lab.
“After realizing the deep, meaningful connection the game had made with some of my former students, I just had to introduce it to a new batch of kids. But this time I wanted to do something a little bigger. Already, I had used Minecraft to engage a small group of students who came to me for literacy support. Minecraft was the ideal game to let their imaginations and writing abilities go wild. From strategy guides to avoiding Creepers to documenting their scientific inquiry into the results of lava-water collisions, the results were impressive. I had to do it again. But this time, I really wanted to put the multiplayer into the game. This time, I’d have one new world but 30 students, from across 3 different schools: A Multi-School Minecraft Server.”
EDGE Lab Graduate student Melanie McBride will be presenting at the iSchool Colloquium Series at the University of Toronto on Thursday April 19, 2012. The session takes place at 140 St. George St., Room 728 between 4 – 6 p.m. If you would like to hear Melanie speak about the ‘hidden’ and ‘null’ curriculum of digital gaming and play, click here here for more details.
EDGE Lab RA Vlad Cazan presented the Button Masher at the TIFF Nexus Locative Media Day on Oct, 28th, 2011. It is a single or two player interactive tactile experience consisting of two devices each with 30 LED-embedded buttons and multiple game modes. Games range from Snake-like game play, reaction based two player games and a strategy game similar to Othello. The size and nature of the device create an experience you cannot find with traditional controllers. Devices like the iPad are too small and the Kinect lacks the tactile response.
The Peripherals Initiative – Button Masher
EdgeLab hosted the DocSHIFT Institute, a mentorship/incubator for digital documentaries. Richard Lachman did presentations on strategic approaches to digital documentaries and on tools for digital documentary production, as part of the Institute projects.
Prototypes developed under the program were recently presented at the DocSHIFT Summit where the EdgeLab also helped to program.
Here is a compendium of interesting projects in the digital-doc space.
Link to pics of a cardboard desk and school bus easel/book holder by Ourania Xanthopoulous.
Ourania completed a placement at the EDGE Lab in summer 2010 and is now at OISE in the teacher education program. She continues to apply what she learned and is working on a Science assignment that bridges Adaptive Design into the grade 4 Ontario Science Curriculum topic of structures.
Adaptive Design Internship
Will Richardson’s post Preparing Students to Learn Without Us features EDGELab’s grad student Melanie and her thoughts on autonomous learning.
Melanie McBride, a Toronto-based educator and researcher with Ryerson University’s Experiential Design and Gaming Environments lab, echoes that sentiment.
Personal and autonomous learning is self-directed and self-selected according to the learner’s own needs, preferences, and learning arrangements … Truly autonomous and personal learning means making our own choices about what we wish to play or learn with, whom we wish to learn with or from, where we want to do this learning, when we prefer to learn or play, and how we want to learn. (personal communication, October 3, 2011).
BTW, we have just published a paper on the topic of children and autonomy:
The Stranger Danger: Exploring Surveillance, Autonomy, and Privacy in Children’s Use of Social Media