Gamelab is pleased to announce two new audio products.
Just launched on iTunes is JAM, a music project for schools targeted at SEN teenagers. The project comprises 20 tracks.
There are two versions – in English and Welsh. Go to iTunes and look for
Jam-Cymraeg and Jam-English
The second product is Sophie’s Adventures in the Dark produced with partners Leo Media. This is a radio style drama produced in binaural stereo – put your ear phones on and experience the awesome personal surround sound space. For a limited period you can download the podcast by clicking here.
A recent Gamelab production – Make a Musical- has been shortlisted in this year’s Japan Prize. The JAPAN PRIZE was established in 1965 by NHK as an International Educational Program Contest and has established itself as the world’s most prestigious award for educational media. Executive producer Martin Wright is delighted that the Gamelab team have gained this recognition in a very competitive field. If you’d like to know more about Make a Musical check out our previous blog below.
Gamelab has devised a musical theatre piece featuring young people with special educational needs for a new BBC Learning TV programme Make a Musical. The Gamelab team worked with a cast of more than 20 young people – the majority of whom have special educational needs – to create a 45 minute musical theatre feature I Know Me.
Make a Musical is aimed at encouraging schools and colleges to undertake the performance as featured in the programme which also carries workshop footage for use by schools during production development.
Gamelab’s Martin Wright, the producer of I Know Me, said: “This feature has been tailor made for children with special educational needs. The music is great and really easy to sing-along to. We hope that schools with similar pupils to the cast will use this resource instead of reduced versions of traditional musicals, like Oliver.”
“The process of putting this project together has been very fulfilling and empowering for the cast, producers and most importantly we hope the audience.”
“I was particularly moved by one young man in the cast, who is severely autistic. He is normally very shy and doesn’t say too much. But as soon as the singing began he would completely transform.”
The original music for I Know Me has been composed, arranged and directed by Youth Music Theatre UK (YMT) composer Rebecca Applin and was devised with drama director Owen Smith working with pupils from: Abbey Hill School and Performance Arts College, Stoke on Trent; Haringey Sixth Form Centre, London; College Park School, London
The programme will be transmitted on BBC2 on the morning of June 21stat 4 am.
The programme will then be added to the online Learning Zone Broadband Class Clips database where they can be viewed on demand – bbc.co.uk/learningzone/clips.
JISC TechDis, in conjunction with the BIS and the TSB, has selected Gamelab as one of two companies to develop prototypes for the Making Waves initiative. Making Waves is about converting gesture (or sign) language into digital data. Gamelab’s offer, uKinect, has already past through a proof of concept phase. uKinect is a gesture recognition system for learning disabled non-verbal communication including Makaton signing.
Phase 1 produced a proof of concept…See the uKinect page
In Phase 2, Gamelab, together with our partners Hassell Inclusion and Reflex Arc, will further explore the use of Microsoft Kinect technology to produce games, training and support applications which help users to communicate and express their needs more naturally developing a prototype for both learners and those supporting them. Additional work will include:
- enable learners to show progress in their signing to help them achieve curriculum targets,
- creation of a new engine for minimising the cost of generating ‘sign recognisers’ to allow new sign recognition vocabularies to be created more quickly and cheaply;
- the inclusion of reference videos so signs which are new to the learner can be demonstrated
- addition of new gameplay techniques to allow the level of difficulty in the game to be personalised for the individual learner, and allow the learner to see how they are progressing in their learning and accuracy of signing;
- extending the target audience for this prototype to include students with autism and people whose communication has been limited by them having a stroke;
- creation of a ‘personalised gesture support communication system’ which could help a much larger cohort of learners whose limited use of their hands prevents them from signing, but who can make gestures consistently enough for such a system to provide a more efficient, capable interface than the ‘switches’ which currently constrain their interaction.
Gamelab together with partners Hassell Inclusion have completed phase one of a proof of concept project which allows young people with learning disabilities to sign through to a computer game through Microsoft’s Kinect sensor.
Visit the uKinect page for more detail.
Gamelab have been nominated in two educational sections at the annual children’s BAFTA awards.
Primary Learning category: Ways of Talking produced with BBC Learning
Secondary Learning: Wanna Be a Rockstar also produced with BBC Learning
more to follow…..
A good deal of interest has been shown in Judge Jenny’s Folktale Court – an animation series from Gamelab’s stable. She could well be talking in Arabic, Spanish and other languages before long. Contact us if you’d like to know more.
This proof of concept project is now entering its final stage with tests in London and Yorkshire with a Makaton gesture input in front of a Kinect sensor driving avatar Boris into action. The Kinect technology connected to a PC is being used to recognise a handful of signs relating to simple everyday needs through a simple game. The gameplay is simple but effective. The users of this project are young people with learning disabilities.
Sign "EAT" and hungry avatar Boris will eat.
Gamelab’s super Lead Developer, Richard England, has created a fantastic hack using Kinect, which has been chosen by KinectShare as one of the six best hacks on the Net!!! Click here to view and ‘like’ the demo!!! The winner hack will be chosen by Microsoft to be developed into an Xbox Kinect gadget!!!
Gamelab’s latest programme was aired on BBC Two on the 4th May @ 5.00am.