Amazing Reef Moviemaker
Common Sense Media says
What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this fun, educational game was created for Chicago's Shedd Aquarium and resides on their site. There's no advertising in the game, and the computer sound should be on to get the full interactive effect.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- following directions
- script writing
- making new creations
- digital creation
Engagement, Approach, Support
A realistic rendering of the undersea environment adds a level of sophistication, and giving kids the chance to pen their own scripts increases the game's creative potential.
Each character comes with a fact sheet, which makes learning about the reef a natural part of the experience. Letting kids write, cast, direct, and choose music will give them a taste of the many skills involved in creating animated content.
Kids can learn more about the reef by checking out the Shedd Aquarium's other online activities.
What's it about?
AMAZING REEF MOVIEMAKER invites you to take the helm and tell some tales of the coral reef, casting salty characters in brief blockbusters such as "Quest for Dinner" and "Who Goes There?" You're going to shoot on location in the Philippines, but first you need to cast the roles for each part. Once you've netted all your players, it's time to shoot the scenes. There are three "Acts" to your film, and the suspense needs to build, according to the prewritten script. Feeling creative? You can also change the script if you'd like. After your three scenes are complete, add music to really set the mood. Add your title and credits and you're done!
Is it any good?
Amazing Reef Moviemaker is a great way for kids to work both sides of their brains: They learn a little about coral reef ecosystems and get creative at the same time. The simulation is visually appealing, and they can play it again and again. The one thing that could make it more fun is giving creatures more "actions" to perform -- they can move around and eat each other, but that's about it.
Explore, discuss, enjoy
Families can talk about how to create a mood with the shorts they create. How do the physical interactions of the characters play a role? How does the music change the way an audience feels about the film?
Families can also talk about other ways to create media on your own. What types of media do you wish existed? How can you go about making that media, yourself?