Project Developer Lauren Mathews Discusses the App
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[Lauren Matthews, Project Manager, Boise State GIMM Dev Team]: The app is called ABC Stories. It just released to the App Store on January 1st of this year. It’s an application that’s designed using augmented reality to teach children of all ages and all abilities handwriting. We started out initially targeting children with autism, but then we realized that there was a bigger need for this in schools across Idaho, especially with interest from the Boise School District. And so we opened that up to students of all ages. The app is 100% developed by students, so there was no teacher intervention in it at all. I mean, other than the fact that we may have asked a teacher something, but no teacher programming or anything, just students.
[App Voice Narration]: Can you find the green dot and trace a line to the red dot?
[App Voice Narration]: Great job! Now, can you find the blue dot and trace a line to the orange dot?
[App Voice Narration]: Amazing!
[Lauren Matthews, Project Manager, Boise State GIMM Dev Team]: One thing that’s really cool is it does track all of the data. So all of the handwriting accuracy, all of the letter recognition accuracy, and it puts it into a database for teachers to look at. So a teacher can actually go on and say, “okay, Henry was using this for an hour and he did great on H, but maybe I needs a little bit more work.” So they can tailor their lesson with that child to focus more on where their needs are. ABC Stories is free on the App Store. That was something that from its initial idea when it was just a baby app that we really wanted to make sure we didn’t budge on. With everything going on in the world, and people are struggling enough, we didn’t want a tool that we created to help people to be blocked by anything. And the fun thing about ABC Stories is that it really takes the child and puts them inside of the story and they get to be a part of that. I think it’s a unique opportunity to be a part of a dev team. We get to leave and graduate and go to a future employer, and say, “we made this, it’s live in the App Store. You can go check it out.” And then just the experience, with making a curriculum and dealing with clients, and really going out and meeting people, public speaking, networking, presentations, there’s a lot of other softer skills that we developed rather than just development through IOS. I think it’s a unique experience for all GIMM students.
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