yuanjun's blog

Race to the White House 

Race to the White House has been quite a journey for the last two weeks. I certainly enjoyed it very much. This project has been quite successful in my opinion. Looking back at all the preparations before the program starts, I think it all worked out very well.

 

Although this program started two weeks ago, we started preparing it many weeks in advance. I made the maps and set up all the GPS devices for them. We had to buy sunscreen, batteries garden gloves and bug repellent. I used to think these items were not necessary but they all had their uses once we got into the park. Many students used gloves to reach place  they normally wouldn’t touch. For example, students have to reach a hole inside a hollow tree or the crack of a big rock. One time we went to Marine Park where there aren’t any shades, so students all have to use sunscreens.

 

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Since we went to four parks in New York City, I needed to make four maps showing each geocaches to be found. This would make it easier for the students to find geocaches. The biggest challenge was to get to the place. We had to use public transportation. The weather was really hot and we all had to walk in open fields.

 

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NYC Haunts reflection 

NYC Haunts is very creative in its design. It is a program in which youth use ARIS on Ipads to explore historical neighborhoods.  I like the idea of exploring neighborhoods with techknowledge. We worked in a nice library. We set up the apps on the iPads and started exploring Little Italy in the afternoon. About six middle school kids participated in the game.  The weather was very nice, sunny and not hot. We walked out of the library looking for Jonas, who is a virtual character.

We did a lot of testing before the students actually get to play it. We went to the library two days before the game and pretend we were playing. We learned about each of the virtual characters in the game, and fixed some conversations between players and virtual characters. We walked outside and went to the markets. Surprisingly the locals were so supportive and were very interested in the game we were testing. The chef in the market even tried to tell us stories about this neighborhood.

My Experiences in Playtesting "Conflict in Little Italy" 

NYC Haunts is very creative in its design. It is a program in which youth use ARIS on Ipads to explore historical neighborhoods.  I like the idea of exploring neighborhoods with techknowledge. We worked in a nice library. We set up the apps on the iPads and started exploring Little Italy in the afternoon. About six middle school kids participated in the game.  The weather was very nice, sunny and not hot. We walked out of the library looking for Jonas, who is a virtual character.

 

We did a lot of testing before the students actually get to play it. We went to the library two days before the game and pretend we were playing. We learned about each of the virtual characters in the game, and fixed some conversations between players and virtual characters. We walked outside and went to the markets. Surprisingly the locals were so supportive and were very interested in the game we were testing. The chef in the market even tried to tell us stories about this neighborhood.

 

 

In my opinion, this is a very successful game. Kids love to use ipads. One of them told me that it was very cool to use an ipad. Some of these kids grew up in this neighborhood, so they were surprised to learn new things about it. They were happy playing the game together and using the ipads.

My First Day Reflection 

        Today was my first day interning at Global Kids. Unfamiliar with the neighborhood, it took me quite a while to get there. Even though I had been there for the interview, when I got out of the subway, it still took me some time to figure out the directions.

 

       The day was fine. It was full of surprises. The first person I recognized was the girl I saw when I had the interview. Second person I was looking for is Daria since she emailed me the schedule.  After that, Daria introduced me to everyone else in the room. This is a big room and lots of people were sitting inside doing their work. I didn’t know they all work for global kids in the beginning; I thought some of them belong to some other organizations.  About ten minutes later, I was invited to a staff meeting. Juan, Daria, Joliz and I started talking about the agenda for VVP. To be honest, I didn't understand everything they were discussing. But the meeting was a very good start for me. Now I know better what to say in a meeting like that in the future.