Dec 13, 2011

Kinect in Education! (kinectEDucation)

Although I'm currently exploring the world of interactive HTML5, interactive video, etc., I think I just might make "kinecteducation" the focus of my tech-hobbies. I have some experience with game programming-one of my computer courses required a project using XNA- and I know quite a bit about gesture and multitouch, multi-user interactio, so it would'nt be too much of a stretch.

My motivation?

As a school psychologist, my main assignment is a school/program for students with disabilities, including about 40 or so who have autism spectrum disorders. Yesterday, the principal of the school attended a demonstration of the Kinect and requested that our school be considered for piloting it. One of my other assignments is a magnet high school for technology and the arts, and rumor has it that it will be offering a game programming curriculum.  I'd love to co-sponsor an after-school game club and encourage the students to program educational apps for the Kinect sometime in the near future! 

I'm also working as a client, in collaboration with come of my educator colleagues, with a team of university students who are creating a communication/social skills game suite geared for students with autism and related disabilities....

I'm inspired by the possibilities!

We have large SMARTboards in each classroom and in other locations around the building, and we have a Wii set up in the large therapy room adjacent to my office. The Wii has proven to be very useful in helping the students develop social and leisure skills that they can use in and outside of the school settings, but some of the students have difficulty manipulating the buttons on the controllers.

You can get Kinect-based apps from the Kinect Education website! Below are selected links from the website:

You can also get additional information from the Microsoft in Education "Kinect in the Classroom" website.

Below are a few videos to give you an overview of how open-source applications designed for the Kinect can be used in education: 

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