The Floating World, the National Gallery of Victoria’s (NGV) latest online initiative, has just been recognised as an example of innovation and excellence by the world’s leading authority on emerging technologies in education. The US-based New Media Consortium described the project as an example of how games can be used in learning to achieve exciting results through research, creative thinking and problem-solving. This reflects particularly well on the NGV as the education sector is still a few years away from embracing games as mainstream practice.
Find more videos like this on The Floating World
The NMC’s Horizon Report 2010 identifies game-based learning, multiplayer online games in particular, as having an ‘enormous potential to transform education’. Students have the opportunity to take ownership of the subject matter — deepening their understanding of the syllabus. Other benefits are: collaboration, problem-solving, public speaking, leadership, digital literacy and media-making.
NGV multimedia manager Jean-Pierre Chabrol worked with the gallery’s Asian art curator Wayne Crother, the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development and Multimedia Victoria’s Broadband Innovation Fund to create The Floating World. The NGV’s collection of Japanese woodblock prints were used as the basis for students to build animated digital ‘Stories of Old Japan’.
Teachers are able to share and learn from each other’s experiences on The Floating World Ning that was set up. ‘We wanted to bring part of the collection to the kids to be analysed,’ Mr Chabrol said. ‘They can build, describe, animate, script and add music to make a story. And then they can bookmark and share.’ In 2009, twenty schools in Victoria took part in the drag and drop animation game; involving forty-five teachers and 500 students. The resources have now been made available to teachers across the world.