Bringing my Playful Cities class to the new KID Museum (storytelling boxes and more)

An example of the fun we’re having…

My class on “Playful Cities” and interactive storytelling traveled this week to a new museum to pitch their projects as potential exhibitions.

Specifically, the students brought their demonstrations to the enormous “KID Museum” that is opening next month in Bethesda on makerspace themes.

Our students created three different “storytelling boxes” and demos with branching stories and educational games, including with RFID and arcade buttons.

The museum wrote in a thank you that they were “beyond impressed with [the AU students’] creativity and conceptual understanding of engagement strategies.” Of course, I agree. We will see how their projects unfold in the remaining month of the semester.

Our collaboration with the KID Museum is a new one for the AU Game Center, and one we hope to grow. We were so inspired by the work of Gabriel Mellan and Jackie Eyl at KID Museum, and the playful spirit they are bringing to exhibit design.

For a taste of our class approach, here is a poster by the talented Meagan Couture that we brought along, seeking to showcase the accessible tools we used. The vision for the demos is that kids and parents might be inspired to make their own in the museum or at home with free tools like Scratch, Makey Makeys, Raspberry Pis, and cardboard prototyping.

Pitching the accessible tools we are using (deliberately low-tech!)

(We will also be bringing this model to our grant with 25 cities to bring game design to public libraries.)

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