oDreams: Scalable Game Design Project

odreams-emintsoDREAMS, online Design-based Reform-oriented Educational Approach for Motivating Students, is based on the highly successful Scalable Game Design project at the University of Colorado-Boulder (UCB). The goal of the NSF funded project is to prepare educators to teach students computational thinking skills as they learn to design, program, and debug their own video games using the AgentSheets software developed at UCB.

Together eMINTS and UCB, have designed online and blended  professional development that helps teachers:

  1. Teach computational thinking (CT) concepts and processes to students
  2. Create 2D games and adapt knowledge to create science simulations
  3. Incorporate above CT objectives into their existing curriculum and align to the Common Core and Next Generation Science Standards.
  4. Learn about pedagogy and it’s impact on learning
  5. Develop lesson plans, assist themselves and students, learn about research, expand knowledge and understanding
  6. Use CT assessment instruments such as the CTPA (the Computational Thinking Pattern Analysis assessment tool) understand student learning
  7. Support and coach other teachers interested in Scalable Game Design curriculum 

Three Ways to Participate

Through the oDreams project, “Critical Thinking and Problem Solving with Game Design,” eMINTS prepares teachers to introduce programming to their students. Teachers leave the course with lesson plans and game examples for immediate classroom implementation along with a building license for the AgentCubes Online software.

Response to the course has been very positive. Since the projects beginning in 2013, the eMINTS course alone has led nearly 200 classrooms to introduce programming to students. Afterschool programs have been included as well. The success of this project has led eMINTS to additional funding for programming workshops and courses. eMINTS received funding from both Google and Pathways to train teachers.

For more information on the oDreams Project, contact chaffinc@emints.org.

Pathways to Prosperity through the Missouri Department of Education asked to fund a workshop which includes both programming and a Genius Hour path for teachers in rural Missouri. Interest in the project has led eMINTS to offer the workshop a second time. Interest in St. Louis is building for a potential workshop and Summer Coding Institute.

Sign up for the most recent opportunity here.

For more information on oDreams and the Missouri Pathways Project, contact chaffinc@emints.org.

Google Computer Science for High School (CS4HS) has funded two grants in two years. The first year grant was to expand the project to an advanced level online programming course. The second year grant expands programming to the University level where faculty teach university students who in turn go to local schools to teach younger students to program. Working in cooperation with the University of Missouri Adventure Club, programming is being introduced in Columbia schools as an afterschool program. The Columbia schools and the Adventure Club staff have requested more opportunities for training to expand the program.

For more information on the oDreams project and the related CS4HS grants, contact chaffinc@emints.org.

Learn more about
the oDreams Project