Sunday, March 9, 2014

A Quarter of Innovation

My middle school technology wrapped up their latest Innovation Projects this past week. Since this is a semester course, it was their first round of innovating.  Since I love to showcase student work on this blog, please click the links as you are interested!

Waite used his Lego skills to create a Star Wars stop motion video. He admitted to me in the proposal stage that he was familiar with stop motion, but he wanted to learn how to edit and insert sounds.  

Kate wanted to learn about the Revolutionary War and presented that knowledge in her first ever blog. She did a great job of including pictures, quotes, and her own narrative. 

Connor has taken my class before and his first Innovation Project was a web site displaying his graffiti art.  This project was another web site about another hobby -- knife flipping.  He included videos of his tricks plus lots of text about the tricks and the history of the knife brand he uses. 

Daniel started this project with the goal of creating his own video game using C++.  It wasn't long into the project that he realized he was in over his head and we shifted the focus. He is now enjoying teaching himself Java and will eventually grow into the bigger stuff. He created a video to show off his newfound skills.

Dom is sports monster. I would not be surprised if you hear his name in college and pro ranks down the road.  He took his love of sports and created a highlight reel of our school's middle school football team.  

Drew has also taken this class. Last year, he created his own song on Garage Band.  This year, he wanted to try his hand at MineCraft. Actually, he used an app called Eden that I'm not familiar with and recreated MetLife Stadium, where the New York Giants and Jets play football. 

Sam wanted to learn MineCraft and did so by creating a pyramid with a maze inside to hide the treasure.  He ran into some troubles, mainly because he built the pyramid in the air. His final project include a few smaller pyramids around the main one, and I must say it looked great overall.

Justin also wanted to learn MineCraft and attempted to build the Empire State Building. Sadly, he learned a lot about MineCraft crashing on him.  He wound up with no final product to show us, but talked about the things he did accomplish and learn.  I tried to encourage him that sometimes bad things happen and what counts is how we learn from them. 

Jacob has had some MineCraft experience but really wanted to branch out.  He created his own working amusement park. (Keep in mind that I had a group of four students do this project last semester.)  His final presentation was a video taking us through the amusement park. The video is awesome, and I'll link it here when I finally get it uploaded to YouTube. 

Cooper walked us through a video game called Killer Instinct. Obviously, with a name like this, I was concerned about promoting violent video games within the school context. We agreed on a T for Teen version and to keep the violence to a minimum. Cooper did not want his work posted online, but he talked us through the history of the game and some playing tips, then presented a video showing us how to play the game. 

Matthew did something similar playing a game called Skyrim. His final project was to talk to us about the history of the game, show some playing tips, and walk us through a video of how to play the game (keeping the violence to a minimum).

Overall, I'm quite proud of these students for the hard work they put into these awesome projects. I hope you enjoy them.  Feel free to drop them a note on their product, or send me a message, to tell them how awesome they were!

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