Our programs and workshops follow a similar structure carefully designed to captivate kids attention, keep them engaged and to motivated them and look forward to the next steps as they build skills.
Every session includes:
- Awe and excitement: Show something new and cool to the kids.
- Engagement and Reflection: Interactive and participative discussions where kids interact with concepts, goals and introduce their own perspectives to own the topics.
- Awareness of the concepts to be learned.
- Learning by Doing: Practical hands-on activities, personalized by each kid.
- Achievement of goals: Every lesson ends with tangible results or creation.
- Motivation for more: Possibilities, alternative creations and next steps and things to be done in the following sessions are explained.
Captivate with fun
We start by having the kids play for a short time one or more custom videogames we have prepared.
Engage with reflection
We then invite them to comment the game and motivate them to make suggestions for changes and improvements.
Show the Magic to Motivate
We then quickly make changes to the game in front of them or show them variations of the game to reflect their suggestions and comments.
The kids can appreciate the changes made to the game's graphic elements, background, sounds, speed, messages, characters, etc. setting the stage for awareness of the elements later.
We then get them to experience the joy of creation by doing 2 quick activities.
- Create a program on PocketCode that displays a character, which when tapped with the finger complains.
- Make a quick drawing and turn into an interactive game with the "Draw your Game" app.
We ask the question of what is a videogame and we lead the discussion to point out that a videogame is but an interactive story where the player controls the flow through his or her actions. A story with characters and elements, challenges and goals, rules and emotions. A story we can build and design with our own elements.
Connect with their universe to apply the creativity and make it relevant
We ask kids what games they like, what's their favorite game and why. And also which games they don't like and why. What makes them fun, what makes them boring?
Trigger the imagination and creative process
What if we could change those games or make our own? Would that not be cool? We saw how games are made of elements we can change.
Kids are invited to imagine a videogame, the story behind it and what makes it cool.
They must write the story and make a drawing representing it. They must then present and explain their game idea to the rest of the group.
To keep the processes practical and the motivation, we direct the kids to create their first game, where the player controls a character that needs to collect an object while avoiding an obstacle. A clear, practical, engaging and hands-on structure is followed:
- We explain the process and show the finished goals
- A simple explanation of the game and what will be required to consider or build.
- Examples are shown of multiple final results and alternative games.
- Easy to follow step by step instructions in short blocks are provided.
- The kids build a personal version of the game with elements from the game they imagined earlier and making their own personal choices.
- The kids present and share their games with others.
Kids are guided to create a new, simpler game on their own, to test and put into practice the skills and concepts they should have acquired:
Game 1: Elements are thrown from the top of the screen and the player has to catch them.
Game 2: Elements are thrown from the top of the screen and the player has to avoid them.
Kids are invited to explore multiple games and examples we have created which illustrate and show how to achieve game behaviors and techniques they can use in their own games.
Those participating in the longer program are at this stage invited to rethink their original idea of their game and afterwards presented with a template to clearly define its elements.
While they work on their own personal games, kids are monitored by the tutors who will discuss and gradually introduce them to advanced game mechanics and specific elements like multiple scoring, levels, bonus, jumping, bouncing, etc.