Mr Finlayson

Education and Technology

Sessions so far…

Posted by alexfinlayson on June 10, 2009

Well it’s been a crazy week. I think we’ve been in The Myst Room 5 times since my last post so we’ve covered a heck of a lot of work that I haven’t commented on. It’s been a strange and exciting experience teaching literacy in this way. Lots of other bloggers who have gone down this route comment on their students enthusiasm for it but I never really appreciated just how captivating the whole thing is. Every morning I am asked if we are ‘doing Myst today’, every day I am presented with new art work and new journal entries – all of which have blown me away but more importantly – I am seeing improvements.

Take today as an example – we finally entered the ‘temple with the red chair’ much to the students delight. This was a room we briefly looked at when we did our first tour of Myst Island. The children were fascinated by the creepy-looking ‘red dentists chair’, as they called it, so I – being a little sadistic – decided to keep that part until the end. Today, we finally had a need to enter the temple.

7ccf7847132dbedb5a14a5af3ab0380aI let the game stand at the doorway (see picture) for a long time as we discussed what we could see and the kids came up with some excellent descriptions for the chair.

 The music in the game changes as you get closer so we started our discussion with why a game would add music to one scene and not another – with some roundabout ideas and a bit of prompting (using the Rocky theme tune) we eventually decided that in this case it was to indicate something particularly important.

We stepped forward and the hand icon changed telling us that we could use the chair – our next discussion revolved around what might happen when we sat down – there were some very interesting and very funny (also disturbing) answers – we ended up talking about a ‘leather-bound, blood-red, human-devouring robot-chair’ – pretty gross and way-off but awesome ideas for a group of grade 5s.

  In the last week we have…

1) Used an internet game walkthrough to create a procedural account for completing the Spaceship Age (a difficult and time-consuming level otherwise)

2) Drawn maps of the Channelwood Age in order to better understand how the flow of the water-pipes effects the mechanics of the level.

3) Separated into two groups to debate which character, Sirrus or Achenar, we would rather trust and therefore free from their imprisonment

4) Tried to decipher what the other half of a torn note might say

5) Composed poems based on either ‘the misty walkway’ or ‘the bat-infested tunnel’

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