Saturday, April 15, 2006

my new game: Africa

Last week I won a 0.2 teaching position at my school in working with new arrivals (mainly from Africa) in improving their ICT skills. This is in addition to my other roles of teaching year 11, 10 and 9 computing and Chess. So essentially I am back on a full load of five lines, although nominally 0.8, because Chess is off line without a full subject teaching load status, even though I am offering it as a SACE Unit (South Australian edu-speak jargon)

This semester my Year 11 course is about Game Design and Making and after a term of skill building we are just starting the design and make your own game part of the course.

So, I thought I'd combine my new role and my established programme by designing and making an educational game about Africa!

In this way I could both improve my knowledge of the countries and conditions my African students originate from as well as modelling for my year 11s the process of designing and making a game myself.

Since I have asked my year 11s to work in groups then I should try to do the group thing myself. I'm thinking that I should setup a wiki and invite others to contribute ideas towards this African game project. I'm currently uncertain about which wiki to use so am seeking advice about that.

Here are my current answers (they will certainly change) to the same four questions that I've asked my year 11s.

Name of your game?
  • Curious about Africa?
  • Ubuntu, the game ("humanity to others", "I am what I am because of who we all are")
What are you going to teach? Provide details
  • basic geography and demography facts
  • the humanitarian situation, some details
  • the politics of Africa
How are you going to teach it? Details
  • show and tell followed by quiz for basics (behaviourist / instructionist)
  • build Africa from a jigsaw (constructionist)
  • shame file (the UN does not look good)
  • I have not thought hard about the game play yet
Who is your target audience? Identify at least one real person

First up I will check that two African students in my Year 10 homegroup like what I am making


Anonymous Graham Wegner said...

Wikispaces offer free accouns to educators (I have one set up there) but a lot of edubloggers I read are very complimentary about pbwiki. Here in SA, you will have to get your network administrator to unblock the word "wiki" and possibly the URL as well to get access in school. Another example of block before evaluation from our department's choice of internet filter.

3:18 PM  
Blogger Bill Kerr said...

hi graham,

I knew about wikispaces but not about pbwiki, so thanks for the tip. I'm checking them out now. It's v. hard to decide!

4:54 PM  
Anonymous ros said...

Onya, Bill - I'm impressed that anyone can actually MAKE a game; I just enjoy playing them : ).

I'd be interested to follow your progress! Best wishes


8:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Bill,

I reponded to your CSTeachers post. I haven't looked at pbwiki but will try and do so.

Foggy Territory

11:22 AM  
Blogger tarannau20 said...


I tend to use Writely, it has some very nice features including publishing directly to your blog. Writely is free but at present they are not accepting new accounts - but there is a backdoor, someone who has a writely account can create a new document and share it with non writely users, which in term creates them accounts :) I have just used writely with a group of Yr10 girls who were producing a script for their podcast.


6:53 AM  
Blogger vonnie said...

Hi Bill,
I agree with Graham re choices. I have tried wikispaces and pbwiki but you might be interested in using the wikimatrix compare wikis wizard tool to further investigations to match your needs.

5:03 PM  
Blogger Bill Kerr said...

Thanks for suggestions

I've set the africa game wiki up at africa game

I have received a lot of mail about the africa game suggestion and have posted some of it to the wiki, check the mail received link

I found the wikimatrix site myself vonnie (thanks anyway), it's good

There has been a useful discussion thread about which wiki? at TALO

11:08 PM  

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