Notes and resources from my presentation at the Education Scotland National Qualifications support event for Higher Computing Science on Thursday 29th May 2014.
Learn to code websites
- Crash course in EnchantJS
- Tutorials coming soon for this at http://teachgames.wordpress.com
Presentation [Google Drive]
Tasks to go with the example files [Google Drive]
Zip file containing all of the examples from the presentation.
Over the past year I’ve been working with Fife illustrator Michael Philp on a comic book adaptation of the story of King Robert the Bruce, the Wars of Independence and the Battle of Bannockburn. The comic is now complete and has gone to print.
We’re launching the comic on 22nd March 2014 at Little Shop of Heroes, a comic book store in the shadow of Dunfermline Abbey where King Robert the Bruce is buried. Helping out will be actor Jock Ferguson of Herald Events who will be appearing as King Robert the Bruce! Also that week Strathleven Artizans will be unveiling a reproduction of the Bruce’s throne in Dunfermline, and costumed actors will be re-enacting the coronation. Later this year, in June, will be the Bruce Festival, a medieval fair in Dunfermline featuring battle re-enactment and jousting.
Find out more about Robert the Bruce at www.kingrobertthebruce.com.
It’s the end of the first week back at college after the holidays. What have I been up to and what is on the horizon?
- Finished One Game A Month 2013 and ranked number 8 in the high scores
- Started One Game A Month 2014 and am planning only two games this year, one made with my students (until May) and then a personal project after that.
- Teaching a variety of subjects this term – Fashion photography, Photography Graded Unit 2 (HND), 2D animation, 2D Animation (Advanced), Games: Media Assets, Portfolio Production, Portraiture, Corporate Photography. The new block starts in March, but most of my subjects continue until June.
- Anticipating a change of management at work. As part of the college merger process a number of head of department jobs have been advertised internally, so each department may have a different manager in the very near future. Uncertain times!
- Started teaching on the Adobe Generation Animation course this week and am looking forward to starting a new course on Video in February.
- Heading to Aberdeen in February to run an animation workshop at the Aberdeen Learning Festival.
- Looking forward to participating in, but not teaching, the Adobe Generation App Design & Game Design courses later in the year.
- Looking forward to publishing my first comic book in March and releasing a short film in April (details soon).
- Hoping to start on a World War 2 history project in the Summer.
This week’s big news from Adobe was an update for Flash that includes support for the HTML5 Canvas element. Up until now the CreateJS toolkit avoided the use of the canvas tag, so this update has been long awaited.
Included with the update are additional HTML5 Canvas code snippets that allow you to construct interactive applications by choosing common scripted actions from a list. The Code Snippets panel has been around since Flash CS5 (I think), but so far it has only been for Actionscript. The arrival of code snippets for HTML5 Canvas will make it much easier to create simple interactive animations directly in Flash.
I hope to have some examples to share with you soon, but for now a screenshot of the new feature will have to suffice!
Learning through Gaming is part of the Festival of Dangerous Ideas 2013. Held at Dundee College, the conference featured a series of presentations from educators and industry specialists on the use of video games for education.
Along with David Renton of Reid Kerr College I presented a session on current classroom practice, with reference to a variety of video games that are being used in education. Part of the session looked at a recent competition, designed as part of the conference, to get students designing an ideal learning environment using the Minecraft videogame.
- Lemonade Tycoon
- Brain Training – schools use Brain Training [BBC]
- Professor Layton & the Curious Village – Presentation from Clackmannan Primary School
- Lego Star Wars
- Manga High
- Polarity Shift
- Time Explorer
- Skills Express
- Game Dev Story
History project involving video games
Serf’s Quest 2004 – http://www.r-e-m.co.uk/rem/xrem.php?T=26281&view=
BBC Games – http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/interactive/games/
How can teachers inspire creativity in their classroom? Lead by example and demonstrate what can be done with a bit of spare time and a little bit of know-how.
During the Spring break I worked on 3 video projects. I shot & edited a video of a local family event, The Mad Hatter’s Tea Party, made a video about the Declaration of Arbroath with a Scottish actor and edited a video of a flash mob that was shot by two of my students.
This week, Adobe UK are hosting workshops for teachers at their headquarters in Maidenhead. Teachers are exploring Digital Creativity and how they can use digital tools across the curriculum in creative ways.
I did a short presentation for the event via Adobe Connect on the subject of computing in schools.
The presentation is available here – Computing in Schools presentation