Learning with Minecraft at Elizabeth Forward Middle School

Our flagship district, Elizabeth Forward, is featured in this fantastic video from Edutopia!

With some help from Carnegie Mellon’s Entertainment Technology Center (whose instructors designed our courses!), Elizabeth Forward Middle School is pioneering the use of Minecraft as an educational tool. Watch and see how Minecraft is being used in the classroom and how students are responding!

NYT Front Page Article Questions Online Learning

GameDesign

Students engaged in Zulama’s Game Design course

Two comments about the article that’s creating such a buzz in the education community.

1. Zulama’s courses are high-quality, unique, and authored by experts. We have rigorous quality control standards and pride ourselves in delivering an exemplary experience to students and teachers alike. There are no “click-click” courses in our catalog.

2. It’s true that there is no sufficient data yet regarding the effectiveness of online learning in grades K-12. However, lumping all online learning into one bucket is not comparing apples to apples. Credit recovery courses may have much different success rates than dual credit courses, for example. As the practice of allowing and encouraging K-12 students to experience online courses grows and more data is gathered, differentiating among the types of courses as well as the delivery methods (online-only, blended, etc), and other factors all need to be considered.

Generally, educators agree that when students are motivated, learning takes place. That’s Zulama’s goal—to motivate and inspire students!

Building Virtual Worlds

I attended the annual exposition for CMU’s virtual reality course entitled “Building Virtual Worlds” as a guest of Zulama.  I had gone to the exposition the previous year and really enjoyed it, so I was looking forward to it this year.  It’s been really interesting to see a course like this continuing for as long as it has and drawing students from around the world. Continue reading

Diary of a Minicourse—A Week with Zulama and Carnegie Mellon’s Entertainment Technology Center (ETC)

May 17-May 21, 2010: Zulama and Carnegie Mellon’s Entertainment Technology Center (ETC) piloted a mini version of their much-anticipated Game Design Studio curriculum. Although it was condensed, seeing the way the select group of students (from the Winchester Thurston School in Pittsburgh, PA) responded to the course was inspiring.

During the rigorous week, students conceptualized and then executed a simple dice-based game. After all, you can’t make a technically complicated 3D computer game unless you can make an analog game that people actually want to play. We’ll call this “Walk Before You Run” week.

Continue reading