Friday, 31 January 2014

Mini Brain Storm


The basis of the game is to grow overly large veg to win prizes. However it will need to be in top condition to win prizes rather than just size. To get top condition large veg, the player will have to learn about the veg, what soil they are best grown in, how much sun light, water etc. It will also provide information about the veg and how they are good for children. Like the myth of carrots help you see in the dark etc.


You are a chef in your own food bar. You have to produce foods for your customers want. Depending on what food you give and how you cook these foods  (healthy or non) will effect your customers healthy. Constantly feeding them non healthy foods or using to much oil/fat will make them gain weight while healthy foods keep them healthy.

Mini Beasts

Making/using your garden to create animal and bug friendly environment by learning about the habitats of these creatures. (possibility of getting outside game interaction?) Matching the bug or animal to there habituate you will be able to make a home for these mini beasts. This could be by putting a bird feeder in a tree or making a rocky areas for creatures to crawl under. The more friendly your garden, the more wildlife comes into your garden.

How could this possibly get outside game interaction?

Rating their own garden on how much wild life is living in the garden

Tips on how to get more wild life in the garden

How to make homes/habitats for these garden critters

Kids Games Research

Ipads are bad for children?

I came across an article in the Daily Mail which goes against the use of Ipads to teach children at young ages. This article has a bold claim that the next generation is the generation of the Ipad. Some of these children cannot hold a pencil due to these touch-screen devices.

(Some of the bullet points from the article)

  • More children are struggling to use pencils, pens and crayons
  • Government guide encourages young children to recognise technology
  • Some nurseries have spent millions on Ipads, smartboards and cameras
  • Experts claim overexposure to gadgets at a young age is dangerous

(The article goes on to discuss toddlers and nurseries: Straight from the article)

Toddlers these day are barely out of nappies before they are playing with touch-screen toys and fiddling with Ipads. And now, it seems, they are paying the price-because when they arrive at nursery they are apparently struggling to pick up basic fine-motor skills such as holding a pencils, pens and crayons. Some nurseries have installed interactive smartboards, digital cameras and tough-screen computers to try to expose children to gadgets at an early age.

‘It makes children comfortable and familiar with the technology and that is extremely useful when they start school’.

 ‘I think what children really need up to the age of seven is real life in real space and real time, which means three-dimensional experiences'.

‘We already have problems with children not being able to hold a pen or pencil.

But we are giving our kids instant gratification all the time with ICT and it makes it harder for them to persevere with something that takes a while to learn'.

‘There is a real fear that too much engagement with this quick-fix technology is making it more difficult for some children to learn how to read and write'.

Although this age group is not what I will be going with, this article pushes the idea of making a game that possibly gets kids to interract with outside influence or making them aware of  healthy playing.

 The online article cane be found HERE.

Getting Kids Outdoors:-Medway Matters

(Image not accurately from article)

In Medway Matters, an article came to my attention about Halling Primary school. Article titles : Children all line up for outdoor learning fun.

This article talks about Forset School teaching which is an outdoor based lesson. The artical goes to say  "The children have an afternoon a week outside in our wild area. This happens all year, whatever the weather. Activities include shelter building; nature art; cooking; using tools such as potato peelers; and hunts for mini-beasts".

It goes on to say how parents are also welcome to join these sessions so that the children can show them what they have been doing. The also learn communication skills, problem solving and knowledge and understanding of the local environment, whether that is hunting for insects or finding out about plants or trees.

This article was quite a nice read and also backs up some ideas around 'mini-beasts' and outdoor games. It also brings to the table of the need to engage children of all ages to allow them to explore and have fun learning.

This article can also be found HERE 

Children's Psychology Research

While roaming the world for children educational games for some market research, I was guided towards the book From Birth To Five Years: Children's Developmental Progress.  

Although I am still unsure on the age I intend to use as my target for my game concept, this books has come in handy and has some good information about a child's development. This has helped the understanding on what a child is capable of understanding and doing at certain ages. 

(Some of the information I have noted:)

-(Motor Skills)

Age 2-7 :  Maturing functional movements such as running, jumping, catching, throwing, writing etc

:  Improving rhythm, sequence, integration and flow to achieve efficient, co-ordinated and controlled performance in day to day activities.

- Development For Motor Skills:

:  Give simple step-by-step instructions for the task

:  Set up a variety of activities

:  Allow time for practice.



(Social Behaviors And Play)

Age 3-5 :  Breadth of interest  in social world

:  Asking 'why' questions

:  Growing understanding of rules

:  Increasing understanding of the links between peoples mental state and actions

These stages are closely tied to cognitive, social and symbolic development. At 4 years, he/she may be investigating bugs under stones in the garden.


(Age 4: Narrative play)

:  Use of miniature

:  Creation of conventional and fantasy scenarios

(Age 5)

Bargaining, compromise and reconciliation


I have picked out these snippets of information out, as to help me in the frame work of the game concept. Although I may rise the age for the game itself, it is good to know what the child would be cable of before hand which may help in designing how the game works.

Monday, 27 January 2014

Ideas For The Major Project

For the major project I was thinking of doing something for young kids; a game, character, toy or something along those lines. I have been trying to think of some ideas around this concept and came up with 3 possible areas to explore for an education game; Math (basic numbers), ABC, and colours.

With it being for young kids, namely around the age of pre-school and year R, I will have to make the game very simple, easy to play and  easy to understand.

I have had  an idea in mind but am not sure how it would be used or evolved as of yet:

The set is made up of large cubes which can be moved and turned 90 degrees in any direction. The player uses the character to answer questions or follow a path working there way through this cube set, moving the correct cubes to get to the end.

For some child friendly influence I have looked at a few TV programs, Games and toys to get some ideas around characters, colours etc

Monday, 6 January 2014


Im looking at font types to try and get the right one that fits smoothly with my world. The ideas I had in my head while searching for fonts were two types of font, one being a little more elegent while the other being a little more cartoony. By cartoony I mean like no 9) being a little more child like rather than to smart like no 2). 

Im not to highly fond of the 'posh' looking font of no2, a bit to fiddly, but I do like no 3 although its a little to 'coca cola',  so on that front, to curly is a little to far from my world. I like the curves of 4 through to 7 but so far no 9 stands out to me more of what I had in my head.

Any help on this, view etc would be welcome.