It is not hyperbolic to say that 2010 was a phenomenal year for the DML Competition. We partnered with the White House's National Lab Network initiative, sent 13-year-old Game Changer winner Jack Hanson to meet President Obama at the White House Science Fair, and were honored to have the nation's first Chief Technology Officer, Aneesh Chopra, congratulate Game Changer winners at the Games for Change Festival in New York, and the Learning Lab winners at a separate event in Washington, DC.
Digital media and learning events involving the highest offices in the nation? There is most certainly a sea change in how we define 21st century learning. And no small amount of effort went into making that transformation happen. The contributions of the DML Competition winners alone have been impressive, whether their impact is measured by research, awards, policy, partnerships, conferences, innovation, and most importantly, student participation.
In the upcoming weeks and months, we will feature DML Competition projects from the past 3 years and share their work here and on HASTAC.org (click here for daily updates on our Countdown to the 2010 DML Competition Showcase series). For now, celebrate the beginning of a new year for Digital Media and Learning with a few highlights from our 2008-2010 DML Competition winners:
- History Game Canada distributed 100,000 free copies of Chapter One of their game to Canadian students, ages 12 to 18 years old, which has been referred to as one of the worlds largest experiments in participatory learning of national history.
- DevInfo Gameworks and M-Ubuntu (two projects from 2009) collaborated on an international project in South Africa with 6th grade students, using mobile phones, laptops, and other technology to create student-designed digital games.
- Engagement Game Labs (developers of Participatory Chinatown) won a John S. and James L. Knight Foundation's Technology for Engagement Initiative to further their work with Community PlanIt.
- Mobiles Voices won a NetSquared N2Y4 Mobile Challenge and a UN-sponsored World Summit Award, and has been featured by NPR, PBS, and the Los Angeles Times.
- Women Aloud (WAVE) founder Sapna Shahani has been selected for World Pulse's Voices of the Future Web 2.0 training program, and was also nominated for a Manthan award in e-learning.
- Playpowers Derek Lomas was a PopTech Social Innovation Fellow in 2009, and Playpowers work was featured in the UKs Guardian, Wired Magazine, and on the World Banks blog.
- In 2009 alone, MILLEE received press in more than 20 publications, and received funding to expand their work to China by Carnegie Mellon University and Nokia.
- More than 600 students have gathered 10,000 bird sightings using WildLabs app for the iPhone, and they were encouraged to apply for a US Department of Education Small Business Innovation Research Grant. Going to SXSW this year? Look for WildLab -- they have been selected to present on a panel!
- CellCraft experienced early success, and the game has reportedly been played more than 2 millions times (as of 12/2010). It was played more than one million times within 10 days of its release, and was ranked in the top 100 best games of all time out of more than 30,000 games on the free gaming site Kongregate.com. Researchers working on the project found that those who played an early version of CellCraft for 30 minutes showed statistically significant improvement on a cellular biology quiz.
- Jonah Models Origami project was well received and subsequently tested by The Wolfsonian (who received MacArthur Foundation and IMLS funding for the Webwise Conference).
- CivicsLab won a Pubic Allies Changemaker Award, and has received press from Forbes, NPR, and a variety of Pittsburgh newspapers.
- Black Cloud, now Aclima Participatory Learning Lab, acquired an exclusive license with Aclima, Inc. to globally distribute their pufftrons, and was a semi-finalist in the Buckminster Fuller Challenge.
- Sustainable South Bronx and Vision Education Media New York (Ohmwork, 2008) went on to develop GreenFab, a collaboration that was featured in the Huffington Post.
- HASTAC nominated Antero Garcia of Black Cloud (2008) for a Teaching Ambassador Fellowship, and U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced the appointment of Antero as one of 15 Classroom Fellows selected from 500 applicants. Congratulations Antero!
- Critical Commons was featured on BoingBoing, and won a USC Teaching with Technology Award to develop Mobile Commons, which will allow users to access Critical Commons from mobile platforms.
- Hypercities won a Google Digital Humanities Research in 2010, and Public Matters, a collaborator on the project, was recently awarded a 5-year grant from the National Institute of Health with UCLA and Keck Medical School at USC.
- Game Changer Josh Hughes of Team Kaizen was encouraged to apply for a US Department of Education Small Business Innovation Research grant.
- Fab@School won a Motorola Foundation Innovation Generation Award and was featured on NPR and NBC, while also receiving great feedback about their digital fabrication and learning initiatives from Karen Cator, Director of Office for Education and Technology with the US Department of Education.
- Mobile Action Lab will be developing youth-created apps based on a two-part investigative report with NPRs All Things Considered, a story that was subsequently picked up by the Huffington Post, Gawker, Jezebel, and BoingBoing. UPDATE: Mobile Action Lab gives us a glimpse into Brains and Beakers, a recent Lab event, as they prepare to launch their new website and get ready to go on Twitter.
Countdown to the 2010 DML Competition Showcase features Where Are They Now? updates on the 2008, 2009, and 2010 winners. The 2010 DML Competition winners will showcase their projects at the Designing Learning Futures DML Conference on March 4, 2011 in Long Beach, California.