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DIY iPad/iPod Videogame Authoring

GameSalad is a desktop video game authoring tool simple enough for casual users. The authoring software only works on beefy Intel Macs running OS X 10.6 but the games can be distributed on-line and even sold for cash through the Mac iStore.  Dan Caldwell, a singer/songwriter science teacher from Utica, NY, develops science games for elementary and middle school students though his company SciTunes. It looks like a real kitchen table operation. In the demo video below, Dan seems to be sitting in his kitchen:

The game play is mostly point-and-shoot assignments with basic graphics illustrating the biological lessons. I can see how a five year old might spend hours shooting at bacteria, but he might not understand the key concepts without the smart supporting curriculum that wraps around the play.

I’ll bet the animated imagery is the real teaching tool: white blood cells you can drive to kill germs are a lot more compelling than static text-and-graphics in a picture book.

A local news team shot a feature on Dan last month.

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