From the brief we started with initial strategy meetings with the team at Vocabulary Ninja to scope exactly what they wanted from the mini games and define a strategy going forward that was feasible for both parties. After the strategy and approaches were outlined, we set out on discovery for the project, researching exactly what the needs of the children playing the game were going to be, how it can be directly linked to the work in schools, and what the benefits would be from playing the games, albeit being an enjoyable and fun experience. A set of tactics were collated in which we were going to approach the project with the budget we had.
The challenge was multiple part.
Covid put a microscope over the inadequacy of remote learning tools for KS1 pupils. Teachers and parents have realised all too well that at the time many were thinking on their feet and using clunky, not fit for purpose tools and resources that struggled to hold the children attention.
Vocabulary Ninja has a battle tested set of learning principles that many teachers use on a daily basis across schools in England and although the products and memberships to the service are sold and downloaded digitally – there was no truly digital product that could be placed in the hands of children.
The core challenge was to turn the teaching principles of Vocabulary Ninja into several different fun to play, easily accessible games that had an educational impact.
Educational impact was crucial, as many educational apps and games for children in that age range are essentially button bash until you get the result so learning can be minimal and so this was top of mind when defining our challenge.