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Masters Project: interactive book for kids learning to read april 2012

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An iPad interactive book with and emphasis on children who are learning to read. Aimed at the 5-7 age group.

An iPad interactive book with and emphasis on children who are learning to read. Aimed at the 5-7 age group.

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  • 1. Major Project - iPad App Interactive Story Book for Children Learning to Read Monday 12th 2012 Cónal McGovernFriday 27 April 12
  • 2. Fionndel and Nuggs and the Tale of the Missing Elephant Fionndel and Nuggs are regular visitors to the zoo and know all the keepers. One Saturday morning they are arrive to find the zoo in consternation. Apparently one of the elephants is missing. Jez, the keeper in charge of the elephant enclosure, is sitting on a rock, looking rather dejected. “What has happened?” asks Fionndel. “Ellen, has escaped”, replied Jez pointing to a flattened section of fencing in the elephant enclosure and beyond to a large hole in the zoo perimeter wall. Fionndel and Nuggs knew well who Ellen was and vowed to find and return her safely to the zoo and before anyone could protest they were off on their quest to search for the missing elephant.Friday 27 April 12
  • 3. Overview An interactive book for the iPad that is aimed at helping children learn to read. Target group: primarily 5 to 7 years olds (and their parents) Reading Level: Level A, A/B, B (Stages: 5 to 10 Oxford Reading Tree levels) Learning approach: Learning through play Phonics Whole Language Listening Reading Arithmetic Promoting: Enjoyment Understanding Analysing Evaluating Choice Finding and using information DateFriday 27 April 12
  • 4. Overview Content Fictional story 4 Chapters, 10 screens (pages) per chapter, 40 pages total Balanced approach to interactivity/narrative: Drag and Drop Tilt Shake Swipe Exercises: Relating to previous chapter Test understanding of text Locate information Puzzles (anagrams, etc) Listening to sounds Simple adding and subtracting Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 5. Chapter 1: Trunky is Missing Storyboard Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 6. Chapter 2: In Which our Heroes Meet a Monkey Storyboard Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 7. Chapter 3: In Which our Heroes Meet a Dog Storyboard Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 8. Chapter 3: In Which our Heroes Meet a Cat Storyboard Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 9. Text Sample Exercise: Interactive Abacus and Simple Addition Storyboard Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 10. Survey An online questionnaire was created to gather data about the reading habits and use of digital devices of parents (and guardians) of young children with regard to using such device as a teaching tool. Observation Children were observed (and video recorded) using interactive books on and iPad. Interviews Some parents and Montessori teachers were interviewed and shown some educational apps running on digital mobile devices. Primary Data Gathering Methods - *Also: secondary data was gathered from books and the internet - see reference list at end Research Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 11. Respondents’ Gender and relationship to young children Survey Results Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 12. Respondents’ age bracket and their children’s age bracket Survey Results Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 13. Learning to Read: Teaching Methods; Phonics, Whole Language, Balanced Survey Results Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 14. Digital Device Ownership Survey Results Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 15. Children and Digital Media Survey Results Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 16. Educational Benefit of App? Survey Results Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 17. Q15-14 - Security Q15-13 Progress Tracking Q15-12 Instant Feed Back Q15-11 Help/Assistance Q15-10 Games Q15-9 Word Exercises Q15-8 Voice Recognition Q15-7 Narration Q15-6 Illustration Series1 Q15-5 Animation Q15- Story/Narrative Q15-3 Personalisation Q15-2 Interactivity Q15-1 Phonics 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 Question 15 - Elements that might be found in Interactive Book that Teaches Kids to read (Highest score top priority) Elements to Interactive Book Survey Results Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 18. Q18-9 Publisher Q18-8 Author Q18-7 Style of Illustration Q18-6 Entertainment value Q18-5 Educational value Series1 Q18-4 Durability Q18-3 Content Q18-2 Age appropriate Q18-1 Price 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Q18 - Critera for Selecting a Childrens Book that Helps Kids Learn to Read Criteria for Selecting a Book (Digital or Traditional) Survey Results Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 19. User Personas In the following personas all adults selected care for young children in the target age group (5-7) either whole-time (e.g. parents) or part-time (childcare workers). All adults come from the middle-income croup. The personas are based on collected data from the survey and interviews/observations. Persona: C Wallis Persona: Stately Holmes User Group: Child in 5-7 age bracket User Group: Working Mother Gender: Female Gender: Female Status: Single Status: Married Education: Senior Infants Education: Third Level IT Skills: Poor IT Skills: Capable (as required for job) Occupation: Project Manager of a large multinational Persona: F. McG. Persona: May Poledance User Group: Child in 5-7 age User Group: Child minder (part- bracket time), Disability Gender: Male Gender: Female Status: Single Status: Widower Education: Senior Infants Education: Intermediate IT Skills: Poor (but improving all Certificate the time) IT Skills: Poor Occupation: Living life to the full Occupation: Stay at home mum (retired) User Personas Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 20. Child Persona Persona: Carren Wallis User Group: Child in 5-7 age bracket Gender: Female Status: Single Education: Senior Infants IT Skills: Poor Carren is a lively 5 year old who has difficulty concentrating (though she has not been diagnosed with ADHD). She is a smart girl but can be stubborn and will insist on doing things on her own terms. Because of her concentration issues her reading ability is a little behind where it should be for her age. Naturally, at 5 years old her IT skills are fairly minimal but she is willing to try anything. App needs to be engaging to hold her attention. Exercises should be a challenge so she has a sense of achievement on completion but not so difficult as to frustrate. These personas are based on the info gained from collective data. User Personas Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 21. Parent Persona Persona: Stately Holmes User Group: Working Mother Gender: Female Status: Married Education: Third Level IT Skills: Capable (as required for job) Occupation: Project Manager of a large multinational Stately is a busy career woman and a mother of three young children all under 8 years old (2,5, and 7). Her IT skills are good as far as needs be for her job. She owns and iPad a laptop and a smartphone, the latter two of which she uses for work. the iPad is for personal use. Statley is somewhat forgiving of her apps if they have technical flaws. If they meet her basic needs other short comings are ignored. She takes a strong interest in her children’s education and will engaging critically in apps for this market. Having a slightly older child has given her some insight to area of digital media and young children. App should be quick to set up and be clear about its educational benefits. These personas are based on the info gained from collective data. User Personas Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 22. Child Persona Persona: F. McG. User Group: (Child in 5-7 age bracket) Gender: Male Status: Single Education: Senior Infants IT Skills: Poor (but improving all the time) Occupation: Living life to the full F. McG is a capable and enthusiastic reader but has limited exposure to digital media. A such his expectation of an app would not encourage him to explore its environment without hints or encouragement. Interactivity, when discovered, would be a novelty and so could distract from the narrative of an app. He is likely to pick up the ability to navigate an app fairly quickly. An app that does not engage will not be returned too. Interactions should be connected with narrative and not be a distraction. Navigation should be clear and simple. These personas are based on the info gained from collective data. User Personas Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 23. Childminder Persona Persona: May Poledance User Group: Child minder (part-time), Disability Gender: Female Status: Widower Education: Intermediate Certificate IT Skills: Poor Occupation: Stay at home mum (retired) Though May never worked full-time she is comfortable on her state pension and her late husband’s occupational pension. May’s own children have grown and flown. For some extra income and to break the monotony of living at home alone she takes in some of local kids for after school care a couple of days a week. May has a desktop computer which she uses for emails and occasionally booking holidays (which requires some assistance from relatives). Her sight is not great and her dexterity in her hands is limited due to arthritis. She has a mobile phone which she rarely uses as she finds the buttons to fidgety. Smartphones and tablet devices are a mystery to her. As with the kids - easy navigation and as few clicks as possible to get story running. These personas are based on the info gained from collective data. User Personas Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 24. Parent Persona Persona: Arfur Sleep User Group: Unemployed Father(Civil Engineer) Gender: Male Status: Married Education: Unemployed Civil Engineer Occupation: Unemployed IT Skills: Proficient (Geek status) SInce be made redundant Rod has stayed at home to look after the kids. His wife is the main earner in the house and has a good steady income from her job. Rod has a wide collection of digital devices and will happily wile away is free time on online tech forums. He is a self-taught coder (to a passable level) and will happily tinker with the insides of a computer as discuss the latest sports results. iPads hold no fear for him and he will have every corner of freshly downloaded app explored in jig-time. He owns every conceivable digital device (he should really have a garage sale). If there is a technical flaw in an app he will find it. However, the pedagogical benefits of and educational app for kids his likely to pass him by. These personas are based on the info gained from collective data. User Personas Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 25. Age appropriate: Carefully selected ‘balanced approach’ to language. Language and phraseology will be pitched at the 5-7 age groups and validated by qualified educator. Content (Story Narrative): An engaging adventure story where the main characters go on a quest of discovery meeting colourful characters along the way. Educational Value: Story, interactivity, exercises to be reviewed and validated by qualified educator throughout development process. Interactivity: Carefully controlled interactivity that enhances the narrative but does not distract the child from the story. Illustration: Clean contemporary colourful illustrations designed specifically with young children in mind. Animation: Minimal animation activated on user interaction - enough to liven things up but no so much as to turn the story into a film. Navigation: Large accessible menu options to appeal to kids and less dexterous. Separate menus for parental settings. In story menus to be kept to a minimum so as not to distract - semi-transparent buttons left and right to go forward and back through pages. Hide/Unhide drop-down (or pop-up) film-strip navigation bar to jump between pages, chapters, exercises. Repeat button for ‘Read to Me’ mode on each page. User needs based on top collective data samples. User Needs Addressed by Product Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 26. iPad Interactive Books for Kids: Toy Story (tested) - limited interactivity but popular due to familiarity Shrek (tested) - limited interactivity but popular due to familiarity Selfish Giant (tested) - very interactive, very popular with child, interactions appeared to distract from the stories Cat in the Hat (reviewed) - very popular globally, benchmark educational apps Apps for iPad (tested, observed, reviewed) Competitive Review Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 27. Traditional Books: Oxford Reading Tree: Chip and Biff Series - Traditional Books: On the National Curriculum for Junior and Senior Infants in Britain and Ireland. Tried, tested and proven. Easy access for a child. Traditional Reading (tested and observed) Competitive Review Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 28. The above apps fall into to two categories: 1.Interactive Book: Primary aim is to entertain, learning follows through the simple joy of reading with functionality confined to ‘Read to Me’ and ‘Read Myself’. 2.Interactive Exercises: Specific exercises designed to help the child learn sounds, recognise letters, recognise words, improve memory, widen vocabulary, ... A User Experience Competitive Review Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 29. Fionndel and Nuggs App will actually combine the joy of reading, the fun of interactivity and the challenge of regular learning exercises: An engaging story with contemporary style illustrations and ‘Read to Me’ and ‘Read Myself’ options Carefully controlled interactivity that enhances the narrative but does not distract the child from the story Easy Navigable Interface Carefully selected ‘balanced approach’ to language A Different User Experience Competitive Review Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 30. contd.. Regular exercises (end of each chapter) based on sound pedagogical principles (Montessori methods) relating to content of previous chapter Exercises randomly selected so as not to be always the same each time the app run English (UK) spelling Press individual words to hear pronunciation (non US accent) Replay page narration Parental settings: Voice recording, Exercise Hiding, Progress Tracking, Hide Text (listen only) A Different User Experience Competitive Review Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 31. Children enjoy text that is slightly more complex than there own speech From the age of 6 children enjoy tensions that come with suspense and adventure Children are more likely to read something they are interested in Children enjoy subtle humour: something predictable used in an unpredictable way They enjoy humorous poetry with subtle word play Can read stories with chapters and longer passages of text: dozen lines or more Capabilities of Targeted Age Group (5-7) Children and Learning Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 32. Balanced Approach Language Structure Story/narrative Word Exercises (Games) Interactivity (drag and drop, use of accelerometer, etc) Illustration Animation Narration (and Narration Replay) Voice Recording Individual Word Pronunciation Settings (parental) Help/assistance (parental) Instant Feedback (for Exercises) Progress Tracking (low Priority) Security (child lock) (low Priority) List gleaned from collective data gathered. Initial User Requirements list Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 33. Welcome Screen: Provides access to Read to Me, R ead Myself and Parental Settings Read to Me: Child can have story read to them Access to Read to Me option Chapter X: Page 1: Narration and Interactivity Access to Read Myself option Access to Exercises only option (if made available) Chapter X: Page 2: Narration and Interactivity Chapter X: Page 3: Narration and Interactivity Access to Parental Settings Chapter X: Page 4: Narration and Interactivity Chapter X: Page 5: Narration and Interactivity .... Parental Settings: Parents can have a secure access to the settings section: They will be able to control: Read to Me Page 10: Narration and Interactivity (on/off), Exercises (on/off), Record their Voice and set as default, Allow child record their own voice while reading, etc Read to Myself: Child can read story in their own time (no narration) Read to Me (on/off) Chapter X: Page 1: No Narration and Interactivity Exercises (on/off) .... Exercises only (on/off) Chapter X: Page 10: No Narration and Interactivity Record own Voice Chapter X: Exercise Set custom voice as default Allow child record their own voice while reading Exercises Only: Child can do exercises only Track Progress of Child Exercise 1: Randomly Selected Exercise 2: Randomly Selected Exercise 3: Randomly Selected Exercise 4: Randomly Selected List gleaned from initial requirements list Functional Modules Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 34. App Flowchart Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 35. Child will engage with the content and follow narrative. Child will benefit from educational aspect of content. Child is able to safely use the application alone/without assistance. Parents are able to easily maintain, observe and further their child’s use of the app List gleaned from initial requirements list Critical Success Factors Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 36. The design is based in western culture and this could limit its appeal if intending to expand to global market. This version of the app being confined to UK English will mean it will have no appeal in the largest market for apps, the US. App may well be lost in the vast array of apps now available and never fully realise its potential. Without some kind of certification the app may not be taken seriously MVP: The App could be stripped of its exercises and still function as an educational interactive book based on the fact that the language used will be carefully selected to be age-appropriate and comply to the ‘balanced approach’ (phonetic and whole language) used in Irish and British schools. List gleaned from initial requirements list Issues and Risks, MVP Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 37. Bernadette Burns President: St Nicholas Society of Montessori Teachers Association In response to survey results: Impressed that so many respondents were aware of ‘best practice’ for early child reading education. In response to F. McG’s reading of iPad: Interactivity: Pre-reading exercises. Card/Shape matching. Trains a child to carry an image from one line to the other. Requirements list as outline in Doc: Conforms to ‘best practice’ from a teaching point of view. Requirements Doc: List overall is good. Security maybe an issue. Requirements Verification by Real Users Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 38. Laura Gill Fully Qualified Montessori Teacher Requirements Doc: Generally good, supports Montessori methods, wary of too much interaction at the wrong time. Requirements Verification by Real Users Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 39. Mary Reynolds Part-qualified Montessori teacher and mother of two. Requirements Doc: Age appropriate very important. Balance needed between narrative and interaction. Parental supervision required for some children. Requirements Verification by Real Users Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 40. Nuala Springorum Mother of two Requirements Doc: List overall is good. Not so sure of the need for progress tracking. Security maybe an issue. Requirements Verification by Real Users Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 41. Anne Dempsey Mother of two Requirements Dcc: Less sure of list. Thinks kids might like it but her own children are not at that age yet so her experience is limited. Requirements Verification by Real Users Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 42. Chapter 1 Fionndel and Nuggs were regular visitors to the zoo and know all the keepers. One Saturday morning they are arrive at to find that everyone is upset. One of the elephants is missing. Jez, the elephant keeper is sitting on a rock looking very sad. “What has happened?” asks Fionndel. “Trunky, has escaped”, replied Jez pointing to a flattened section of fencing in the elephant enclosure and beyond to a large hole in the zoo outside wall of the zoo. Fionndel and Nuggs knew Trunky well and promised Jez that they would find her and return her safely to the zoo. Before anyone could protest they were off on their quest in search of the missing elephant. Sample Chapter 1 Exercise: Analysis and Word Recognition Drag and Drop: Rearrange the following letters to create proper words: orck! lawl ! ooz! eloh! Language adjusted to be age-appropriate for 5-7 year olds utilising the ‘balanced approach’ to teaching literacy Story Outline Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 43. Chapter 2 Across the road from the zoo there was an old musician sitting on a crate playing a squeezebox. He had a pet monkey who danced for the passers-by. Fionndel stoppeds to ask if he had seen an elephant. “No”, replied the man. Nuggs made some monkey sounds [reader makes monkey sounds] and asked the monkey if he had seen the elephant. The monkey jumped up and down and pointed down towards the park at the end of the road. Our two detectives set off towards the park. Sample Chapter 2 Exercise: Recognise Similar Sounds Link the following words that rhyme: lark man ! toad van park! road Language adjusted to be age-appropriate for 5-7 year olds utilising the ‘balanced approach’ to teaching literacy Story Outline Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 44. Chapter 3 In the park there were two women standing talking to each other. One of them had a dog on a lead. The two boys went over to them. “Excuse me”, said Fionndel, “have you seen an -” but the two women carried on talking. Nuggs decided to ignore them and started barking at the dog [reader makes barking noise]. The dog immediately responded, barking and pointing towards a gate at the far end of the park. Sure enough, the gate at the far end of the park looks a bit bent out of shape - as if something very large had squeezed through it. The two boys went over and took a look. They carefully stepped through the gate. On the other side of the gate there were two roads leading in opposite directions. Fionndel scratched his head wondering which road to take. “Which road did Trunky take?”, he pondered. “What’s that?” asks Nuggs pointing down the middle of one of the roads. “Ah”, says Fionndel “that’s great, that’s elephant dung”. “That’s not great”, says Nuggs “that’s SMELLY”. “But that means Trunky went down this way”, says Fionndel. “Well I am not going down there!” replies Nuggs. With some help [from the reader tilting the mobile device] the dung is rolled the out of the way and the boys proceed on their way. Sample Chapter 3 Exercise: Understand Meaning and Context Drag and Drop. Arrange the individual images [not shown here] that would best describe the passage of text: “The dog immediately responded, barking and pointing towards a gate at the far end of the park”. [Set of graphic elements would be displayed that the child could arrange as they wished to represent the sample text.] Language adjusted to be age-appropriate for 5-7 year olds utilising the ‘balanced approach’ to teaching literacy Story Outline Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 45. Chapter 4 At the end of the street is was an old house. Fionndel went up the steps and knocked on the door. “Do you think that Trunky is in here?”, asked Nuggs. “I don’t know” said Fionndel “but we can always ask the owner”. After a long wait the door slowly opened and a little old women no bigger than the boys themselves peered out. “I beg your pardon, Ma’am” said Fionndel, remembering his manners, “have you seen an elephant?”. “What kind of elephant?” came the unexpected reply. “Oh, eh, well it’s a.. it’s..” - “...an Indian Elephant”, cut in Nuggs. “Yes, and Indian elephant”, confirmed Fionndel. “Well, I am afraid I can’t help you” said the old woman, “I only have china elephants on my mantlepiece”. As they turned away from the door of the old house Fionndel noticed a cat sitting on the last step. “Meow”, he said to the cat in case she had spotted Trunky [reader makes Meow sounds]. Immediately the cat jumped up and licked Fionndel in the face and then pointed to a lane-way to the side of the house. The cat told the boys to go down to the end of the lane-way to a field there. They wasted no time and were soon in the field looking for clues. It was not long before they found freshly trampled grass. “I think we are getting close”, said Fionndel.... Sample Chapter 3 Exercise: Select On-screen Cards: Memory, Word Recognition A number of cards with words are on the screen face down. The child turns over cards and sees a word. The card flips back to face down orientation after a couple of seconds. If the child turns over two cards that are the same one after the other, both cards are removed to the side of the screen and the child continues the game until all cards are cleared. Language adjusted to be age-appropriate for 5-7 year olds utilising the ‘balanced approach’ to teaching literacy Story Outline Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12
  • 46. Lawrence, Lynne, Montessori: Read and Write, A Parent’s Guide to Literacy for Children, Three Rivers Press1998 Stevens, Chris, Designing for the iPad: Building Applications that Sell, Wiley, 2011 Guardian: article re gender balance in children’s books http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2011/may/06/gender-imbalance-children-s- literature Reading Schemes - Kieran O’Regan Educational Agencies Accessed April 2012 http://kieranoreganeducational.com/reading-schemes.html Access November 2011 http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/booksy-learn-to-read-platform/id454984042? mt=8 Starfalls Learn to Read with phonics Accessed April 2012 http://www.starfall.com/ Accessed in November 2011 geeklish: kids books on iPad http://brodiebeta.com/2010/06/16/list-of-interactive-childrens-books-for-the- Reading Wars: Phonics vs. Whole Language ipad/ http://jan.ucc.nau.edu/~jar/Reading_Wars.html Accessed April 2012 Accessed October 2011 Geekdad: ‘...bedtime read?’ Joan Ganz Cooney Center - Advancing Childrens Learning in a Digital Age http://www.wired.com/geekdad/2012/03/a-quiet-read/ http://www.joanganzcooneycenter.org/ Accessed March 2012 Accessed October 2011 David Maybury (Illustrator) http://www.davidmaybury.ie/journal/?p=10118 Accessed march 2012 childrensillustrators http://www.childrensillustrators.com/ Accessed February 2012 References Publications used in research Interactive Learning to Read Story BookFriday 27 April 12

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