Journal of the trial:

20/4/09 Comments:
Students have completed a survey that I developed, asking their view of games, their experience, and if they think they can learn from games. Interesting...

22/4/09 Comments:
Students have completed the TORC test. It will be enlightening to compare these scores with those when retested at the end of the term.

23/4/09 Comments:
The students have been very excited about being involved in this program. They begin today, using the demo version as we are waiting on the arrival of more games.
The rest of the games have arrived, so the students are all set to go tomorrow with their own games. Pity I am not here due to the CLRP Elluminate session.

1/5/09 Comments:
Students’ “Expression potential” does not update until they complete a number of set games. It usually takes them about 35 minutes to complete this however we only have 20 minutes set aside for this take four times a week.

Therefore we are investigating if we can possibly extend 1 or 2 sessions per week. If not, the EP will never update.

5/5/09 Comments
Had a positive reply from the My Word Coach developers today. Ubisoft have agreed that we can use screenshots, etc for our digital stories and displays. Great news, very helpful and supportive. Have been asked to write an article on my trial by the Dutch magazine MediaCoach...

We are now having one extended period per week (Friday) of 35 minutes. The students are so excited about this and Friday is the perfect day for it. They remain very motivated about coming to the class.

13/5/09 Comments
Things are going well and the students are loving making progress. They feel so proud when they reach a new EP, they are getting the kind of instant feedback that we often don't actually give them in class. One student asked to use the game at lunchtime on Monday. This presented a dilema as the program is about using the DS in the literacy class. However, never to be one to turn students away from a learning opportunity, I let her use it. She proudly showed her friends and explained to them how to use the program.

One thing that I have thought about is the absence of voice on the MWC program. It would be helpful for the students if the words were pronounced as well as listed for them. There would be a higher possibility of them using the words in conversation if there was a guide to pronunciation. I contacted Ubisoft to pass this thought on. They were pleased with the feedback, but couldn't promise anything for new editions.

18/5/09 Comments
Last week I discovered that if the students go to the 'Quit' icon, the games that they have been using that day are saved for another day. So that is encouraging! This means that the students make quicker progress through the program that we initially thought.

The people at the game developer Ubisoft Australia have been fantastic and sent me a CD full of images from the program that I can use both in the digital stort as well as any displays. They have also sent me a couple of games to preview and trial. In return, I have offered to keep them informed of our progress and copy them any articles that I write/the school trial is featured in.

The Principal has asked me to contact the local newspaper about the trial. I sent them a pre-written article and photos that students/parents had agreed to.

23/5/09 Comments:
Although I sent the local newspaper an article regarding the trial, they did not return my phone calls or respond to my email with the pre-written story. It's a shame as I think (and so do the students) that our trails are some of the more interesting things that have been happening in schools lately.

22/6/09 Comments:
Students have had their second TORC test, so it will be very interesting to see the results and compare to the first test, which was completed at the beginning of the term.