Filament Games Project: Scholastic W.O.R.D.

Posted: January 2nd, 2020 under Filament Games, HTML5, Project, Typescript, Unity.

Scholastic W.O.R.D. is a reading and vocabulary program for early learners in K-5. W.O.R.D. is grounded in the research of Dr. Elfrieda Hiebert, who discovered and cataloged the 2,500 high-utility word families that make up 90% of all texts. Through games and written passages, students independently progress within a game-based, guided program in which they receive repeated exposure to those high-utility words and their meanings in multiple contexts. The content in W.O.R.D. is organized by grade level and thematic modules with associated word lists. Each module begins with a placement test to personalize the path of each student. This ensures that students are introduced to the same vocabulary, but at the appropriate text level, creating a zone of proximal development for learning. Additionally, students have the opportunity to play card games as part of their learning experience. This creates a zone of proximal development for learning.

I came onto this project just before we started receiving game content from the client and each of the activities already had at least a first version completed. After a brief overlap period, most other developers ramped off the project. Over the next seven months I was managing the leftover features, technical debt, operating as a release engineer, writing documentation, content tools, and managing feedback. When it was done, it clocked in at well over 100 hours of content. It won a serious games gold medal award!

After the initial launch there has been additional development, some of which was typical maintenance work dealing with new platforms, responding to user demands, and acting as a live team. There was also a heavier block of development post launch reducing the min spec device down to iPad2 which required significant optimization.

Unity 2017.1, Unity-Pixi used to export the game to Web, Typescript

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