This game, created at ASU, teaches middle school students about nutrition and the new My Plate icon while engaging them in cooperative exercise.
It has been designed for both the SMALLab rigid body tracking and the Kinect environment. A recent pilot study with a fourth grade class revealed significant learning gains on a pre to posttest nutrition knowledge measure, paired t (18) = 4.13, p < .001, after one hour of play. Significant gains were also seen on how to construct the My Plate icon, paired t (18) = 3.29, p < .004.
Centripetal Force is an innovative learning scenario created by our team when we were at the School of Arts, Media and Engineering at ASU. It is funded by an NSF DRK12 grant. We have worked on embodying Centripetal Force for several years now starting with in-classroom studies and including controlled lab experiments to assess whether students learn more in a certain platforms depending on the amount of embodiment designed into the lesson (i.e., afforded by the environment). The table for the latest experiment represents the 2 X 3 design crossing level of embodiment (High versus Low) with type of platform (desktop, Interactive Whiteboard or Immersive SMALLab).
As an example of the two conditions in SMALLab for Centripetal Force (CF):
1. High embodied - p’s manipulated handheld trackables, felt sensations of CF in upper body and core.
2. Low embodied - p’s worked in same platform, same content, but primarily observed simulations of CF, controlled projected sliders with trackables (this is NOT a congruent gesture with the content to be learned)
Please contact us for results (paper currently under review).
Gears and Levers is being created with funding from an NGLC Wave II Gates Foundation grant. We decided to tackle the complexities of teaching about energy via simple machines. This multiday curriculum includes teacher outlines, embodied Kinect games and innovative assessment measures. All content is being built in conjunction with the ASU spinout company, SMALLab Learning LLC. Recent iterations of the Kinect game are free and can be found under the project heading FLOW at: http://www.smallablearning.com/scenarios/lifting-gears-game.
This project is currently being designed and coded (Sept 2012). It has been funded by an NSF DRK12 grant. Our goal is to create several learning environments that compare learning gains in the content area of electric fields. We will be using a Kinect sensor and an interactive whiteboard (IWB). We will assess differences in learning in an embodied manner with hands-free gesture (Kinect) versus a more traditional IWB system (holding a pen/stylus). In addition, students will be randomly assigned to collaborative versus non-collaborative conditions.
The Situated Multimedia Arts Learning Lab (SMALLab) is a 15 foot by 15 foot space with an interactive floor display that supports numerous innovative motion-tracking enabled learning modules. SMALLab is installed in several schools across America (for example, Quest to Learn in NYC and Phoenix Country Day School). The research lab is housed at the School of Arts, Media and Engineering at ASU. SMALLab uses 12 infrared OPTITRACK motion cameras and a trackable rigid body “wand” that allows the physical body to function like a 3D cursor in the interactive space. SMALLab can track up to four learners simultaneously, making it an ideal environment for collaborative learning. To see videos of some of the learning scenarios, please visit www.smallablearning.com
To watch a particular teacher training video, open the scenario and then click on the video link.
The span of content and sample of publications - from language arts (Hatton, Birchfield, & Megowan, 2008), science, technology, engineering, and mathematics [STEM] content (Tolentino, Birchfield, Megowan-Romanowicz, Johnson-Glenberg, Kelliher & Martinez, 2009), and special education (focus on individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders) (Savvides, Tolentino, Johnson-Glenberg & Birchfield, 2010) suggest that embodied learning in such environments is not content dependent.
SMALLab Learning LLC is a spinout company founded at ASU in 2010 by David Birchfield and Mina C. Johnson-Glenberg. Dr. Birchfield is the President and CEO and headquarters the company in Los Angeles, www.smallablearning.com. Dr. Johnson serves as the Chief Learning Officer and oversees Tempe-based operations. SMALLab Learning is the leader in embodied learning for K-12. The site offers both free content and also sells directly to schools, districts, individuals, and museums. We are constantly designing new content for both the immersive SMALLab platform and the Kinect-based FLOW platform.
Learning Sciences Institute, ASU
The Department of Psychology
LSI Senior Scientists & Investigators
Dr. Johnson-Glenberg graduated with a degree in cognitive psychology from the University of Colorado at Boulder where she worked on one of the first computer tutoring programs to remediate students with dyslexia. She has extensive experience in implementing and assessing the effects of reading and text comprehension programs for K-8. She has received multiple private and Federal grants to research cognition and learning especially in individuals with fragile X syndrome and in the STEM domain (Science Technology Engineering and Math). In 2001, she started the educational technology company the NeuronFarm with multiple SBIR grants from the NIH and the US Department of Education. In 2007, she moved to ASU to research and teach the design and implementation of serious games. In addition to her academic duties, she serves as the Chief Learning Officer at SMALLab Learning, LLC a spinout company positioning itself as the leader in embodied learning. She currently directs the Embodied Games for Learning lab at LSI, where the team creates cross-platform content that uses the body as a learning interface.
Click here to see Mina discuss entrepreneurism at ASU in her Tech Cocktail interview.
Dr. Megowan-Romanowicz is a 20 year veteran high school physics teacher who earned her PhD in Physics Education Research in 2007. Her research focuses on the role of shared representations in mediating student thinking in Modeling Instruction. After obtaining her PhD in 2007 she served as postdoctoral researcher for the SMALLab project (School of Arts media and Engineering). She accepted a faculty appointment at ASU’s School of Educational Innovation and Teacher Preparation in 2008. In 2009, she obtained NSF funding to create a Master of Natural Science degree program for middle school science and mathematics teachers, a Middle School STEM College-for-Kids and STEMnet, a local network of secondary STEM teachers and helped to write the NSF DRK12 Embodied STEM Learning across Different Technology-Based Learning Environments. She currently serves as the Executive Officer of the American Modeling Teachers Association. She continues to teach graduate courses and conduct research as a member of ASU’s Learning Sciences Institute.
Matthew "Hue" Henry is a designer and educator with over a decade of experience in the fields of game design, software development, and education. He has held a variety of positions in the entertainment industry, including work as a web programmer, writer/director on a direct-to-video documentary, content designer on Stargate Worlds, and Director of Design for the MMORPG Alganon. He has also served as Lead Instructor overseeing the Game Production program at Collins College. He is currently working towards a PhD in Educational Technology with a focus on games for learning.
Tatyana Koziupa is a graduate student in the School of Arts Media + Engineering. She has a Master of Education in Educational Technology, and a Master of Arts in Media Arts & Sciences. She has been working in the video game industry as a Sound Designer since 2005, and has years of experience creating and implementing audio solutions for interactive media for various platforms. Tatyana has extensive experience developing and implementing technology in educational settings, and has worked with teachers and subject matter experts to develop effective learning experiences in classrooms using the SMALLab platform. Currently, she is preparing to enter the Dissertation phase of her graduate work, which centers around the design of learning games in museum exhibits, and other informal learning installations.
Caroline Savio-Ramos is a PhD student in Educational Technology. Prior to joining EGL, she worked at the "Situated Multimedia Arts Learning Lab" (SMALLab) where she investigated learning difficult topics, such as Physics, through high-embodied vs low-embodied experiences. Caroline's research interests include: educational technology in learning, embodied learning, human-computer interaction, Physics education, mobile learning, and user experiences. Prior to her doctoral studies, Caroline worked as a high school Physics teacher in New Jersey for 8 1/2 years where she taught college prep, honors, and advanced placement Physics. She also taught undergraduate students as a faculty adjunct. She holds a B.A. in Physics and Spanish from Rutgers University, an M.A. in Science Education from New York University, and an M.S. in Educational Technology from Ramapo College. She is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese, and speaks some French and basic Italian and Japanese. You can learn more about her here
Christopher Dean is a senior in the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts at Arizona State University. He started his studies at the University of Arizona in Math, Physics, and Philosophy, and transferred to ASU to pursue his true passions. Now he studies programming, animation, 3D modeling, and digital technology innovation in Digital Culture. He is interested in utilizing all of these skills in developing video games and smart phone applications. He spent the last year designing educational game scenarios for SMALLab, which integrates motion capture technology and digital games for embodied learning experiences. He is the president and founder of the Digital Culture Student Association. When he isn't facilitating and designing his own interactive games and stories for table-top role playing games, Christopher enjoys video and board games, fantasy and sci-fi novels, ping pong, and racquetball.