MIMS alumni Shreyas (MIMS 2014) and Divya Anand (MIMS 2014) presented Wordcraft, their MIMS final project, at this week’s CHI PLAY conference in London.
Wordcraft is an interactive iPad application for children who are learnng to read; children can build sentences and immediately see the sentences visualized. The app creates a concrete representation of oral language and allows for linguistic manipulations. The developers believe that Wordcraft can strengthen a child’s metalinguistic ability by providing visual feedback. Wordcraft is structured in a game-like format to increase engagement and encourage play.
The app was developed by 2014 MIMS alumni Divya Anand, Ashley DeSouza, Sonali Sharma, Shreyas, and Victor Starostenko, with guidance from their advisors, professors Marti Hearst and Kimiko Ryokai. Anand and Shreyas represented the rest of the team in London.
CHI PLAY is an international conference (by ACM SIGCHI) for researchers and professionals across all areas of play, games, and human-computer interaction. We call this area “player-computer interaction.” The conference highlights current research in games and HCI as foundations for the future of digital play. Wordcraft was featured in the conference’s “Works-in-Progress” section. The team’s paper will be published in the conference proceedings.
Anand and Shreyas were delighted by the positive feedback they got at the conference; people loved the graphics, the app’s usability, and the way that it promotes meta-linguistic learning. And the whole team was grateful for Hearst and Ryokai’s mentorship. “Without Marti and Kimiko’s support and help, we wouldn’t be here,” said Anand.