Monday, May 26, 2014

This is a link to our Minecraft Blog

This is a link to our Minecraft Blog

Messages Home re Land Grab

The land grab and messages home

Beau - hi dad we have just put up the border

Bella - Mum,
My tribe and I just claimed a massive piece of landing. I’m missing you already.
Love Bella xx

Massi - hey mum i perfectly all right were making gigantic fences but busy now talk later later

Kerryn - Mum,
My tribe and I just claimed a massive piece of landing. I’m missing you already.
Love Bella xx

Vannida - HI MUM!! today was a tiring day today!! and i miss you and the family so much! :( xx take care! :D

Reflection Session 13

Reflection Session 13

Stake your claim!

Last week all new settlers were happy to visit and move around the new territories, visit other tribes and friends. Today they marked out boarders and laid claim to Martian land in the name of their tribe. What a bun fight!! It was like the Wild West, Early Colonial Australia or the Middle East! Suddenly it wasn’t ok for other tribes to be visiting or rather trespassing.

As the markers were placed some tribes spread their lands as widely as possible encompassing as much land as they could, others worked in close proximity to their pod and others build actual walls.

There was much banter as to who had claimed parts of Mars first and the negotiations began!

Soon the questions were being asked…..

Who is going to control what people do on Mars?

What happens to people who come onto our land?

What if we want to visit other tribes?

Can we make passports?

Are there any rules? Do we need them? What should they be? Who decides this?

In the coming weeks…………As educators we look forward to going on this learning journey of civics and citizenship, geography, history and interpersonal learning with our new Martian Colonists!

Work Plan Session 13

Session 13

Land allocation

Geographical borders designed by man.

Consider how borders are marked on earth and how borders are defined.

Many are not physical, and only exist on a map.

Some borders are physical and are marked by fences or other markers.


Tribes will decide on the area of land they feel their tribe will need. They are to claim it as their tribal lands in the new colony. Using markers of their own design they will mark out the parameters of the land they are claiming. (Use a glowing marker)

Tribes must consider:

How much land do you need?

What space do you require for your tribe to continue with its trade or skill?

In World

Find your tribe members in the world and design a marker.

Fly up and look down on the Martian terrain that surrounds the landing zone of your tribes pod, decide what your tribal space should be.

Share the marker design across the tribe and have each tribe member place it on the boarder of your Martian tribal lands as claimed by your tribe.

Text to Earth send a brief update message to earth

Video Log record your tribe’s video diary for this session.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Student Log Entries from Mars 20 May 2014

Log Entries 20 May 2014

Data is slow and expensive to send back to Earth so messages have to be short.

Nadia - WOW….Mars is x. …:) i <3 u family

Amber - I have arrived. ILYSM talk soon3

Beau - Hi dad this is beau i arrived on mars

Billie - heeey, we r all fine it twas a safe journey and ill give more details later on. miss u

Joel - ok love u mum joel mars is rocky 20 may

Massi - hey mum how r u I’m still alive but since Im gone i ll miss u and since I’m rich  all my money goes to u  later bye

Mellisa - awesome here, i love u and miss u xo

Nyater - hi mum I’m a  live so it is good love you

Aaliyah - hey dad we just arrived at mars miss u dad hope u were here
it a nice place and its going to be fun.

Bethany - we r ok on mars small mountains rocky desert

Blake -Hi mum i did not die on mars


Karissa - dear mum i luv u I’m safe nd happy. i arrived today nd its fun!! the building is huge. just wanted to say hi bye

Nyankach - Dear who ever reads this we have safely landed on mars and theres not much here at the moment

OJ - how are you cat are you dead by good talking to you

Monday, May 19, 2014

Work Plan Session 12

Session 12

First settlement

 We have arrived on MARS. The fun begins!


Priorities for survival

What should be the first things your tribe must do to establish their colony?

Reuse, recycle, reinvent

Consider exploring the surroundings

How can the structures taken to Mars be adapted to suit the terrain of Mars?

In World

Still photo collection – record your project in pictures.

All tribes are to take shots of their pod and tribe members on Mars and save to server folder.


Set up camp/village tribal space in the landing zone.

Write a text message to someone you love on earth

Use text editor

Save and send to server for Gene to collate

Use text appropriate language, limited characters to lower the data so it gets sent quicker/faster. 9 to 10 month journey 14minutes for data to travel one way. 7 minutes wither way.

Tribe Time Capsule

Video Journal entry – use photo booth

Export and store video journal entries in tribe folder on MAC server

Each entry must be dates

1st entry all tribe in one shot (each week at least one person must make a video diary entry)

First impressions of Mars and your new surroundings.

What have you learnt on this journey so far?

Leaving the Earth Project – Music Blog Week 2. Tribe Melodies

This week the students explored the ideas, thoughts and concepts behind the following questions
  • ·      What is a melody?
  • ·      What is Rhythm?
  • ·      What is Pitch?
  • ·      What is a step(as it relates to melody)?
  • ·      What is a skip(as it relates to melody)?
  • ·      How do we make a melody?
  • ·      Where can we get ideas from?

The discussions were great though we did resort to Hangman(an old favourite of mine) to add a bit of fun into the lesson.

Ultimately we asked the students where could we get a rhythm from if we think about the mars project. It was suggested by the students that we could use their tribes names and the role the tribe plays in the overall class. Once this was agreed, we then explored playing the rhythm on one note of the keyboard then added a step or two. Eventually we added steps a leap and some more steps to demonstrate a simple melody.

We then wrote down on the whiteboard the steps the students recited to us about how to make a melody. After the process was confirmed with the students,  the class started a new project in Garage band, applied their designated scale mode, and then explored ideas for their melodies.

Going by the level of focus and concentration that was going on, the students seemed to be liking the exploring process.

Next week we will revisit the concepts and share some melodies!


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Leaving the earth - Music Themes Week 1

The goal of integrating the music subject into the Leaving the Earth Project is to create a project that combined the two subjects in a way that was meaningful from an educational perspective but was also meaningful to the students. Additionally, the project should develop the student’s skills so that they can be applied in projects for subjects outside music if needed.

As each class is divided into tribes, the plan devised with the class was to create music that would allow each tribe to sound different but be a part of the unique class “sound”. This concept was supported by discussing how the English language can be spoken but be spoken with a broad range of accents, though it is still English.

Class by class we discussed in basic broad brushstrokes, what the class would like as a sound as a foundation. This could either be Electronic or Acoustic, we also discussed tempo of their music. This will allow us to combine all the tribed music together to create a class tribe medley for presentation ceremonies later on in the project. Lastly we explored and discussed melodic scales that their melodies would be based upon. As we are using GarageBand on the iPads this excersise is simply a matter of opening one of the instruments and selecting the specific scale.

Once the class decided on their Sound, Tempo and Melodic Scale, the students used the rest of the time to explore any one of those three areas in their tribes which usually were groups of 4.

At the end of the class we instructed the students to set up a project on the iPad and name it based on their class and tribe name.

Next week we will see how we go exploring the idea of “What is a melody” and what the students come up with.


Thursday, May 8, 2014

Techs and Specs for the sound

We have a theatre fitted out with a 3000 watt JBL VRX flown array sound system.

This is a seriously LOUD system.

To use it to full effect and create a thrilling sensory experience I used a number of effects containing subsonic frequencies to create the rumble of the spaceship and the boom of the rockets. In all over 100 individual sound effects were compiled, edited and manipulated to create the sound track for Leaving The Earth.

My favourite creative moment is the sound effects used when the spaceship travels through hyperspace with starts shooting past it.

I created this using the sound of a rope being swung in circles which was then slowed down creating a phasey other-worldness to it. I then combined it with the sounds of a dentist drill, a high pitched synthesizer sound and a microwave oven which was also dropped in pitch

Malcolm McMahon
Studio Producer & Co-ordinator

Incursion Opening Sequence

In a darkened theatre the students waited for the launch to Mars.  Suddenly the room began to rumble.  Please take note that the first 60 seconds is sound under black vision as part of the design before the animation starts.

The students screamed with joy as this thundered through our theatre.  The inflight movie was Wall- E which included a packed inflight meal.

At the close of the film this clip was played to simulate the landing on Mars.

We all arrived safe and well.

Work Plan Session 11

Session 11

Launch travel to mars

Students are to be in the theatre by 4pm for school incursion Leaving The Earth for Mars launch

Launch Week travelling to Mars

Tribes must name all prims and “pack” (save/store) them in the inventory

Each tribe member is responsible for the items they designed and built and for saving them.

Anything left behind

In world

Each member of the tribe must be wearing the space suit and helmet designed by their tribe in preparation for the launch.

 Any final touches to the structures and pods. Save and rename appropriately so that the items can be accessed from the inventory when they reach mars.

Mars launch night

Simulation of a launch rom earth

 In flight film

In flight meal

Work Plan Session 10

Session 10

Pack to leave.

Hand out Incursion forms.

Packing to leave – The Essentials


Take to Mars that they will need to have in order to continue with their tribe’s trade or skill.

The items they take may be unique to their tribe and other tribes may approach them on mars to access their tools or utilise their unique skills. This may form the basis of a basic system of trade or economy in in the fledgling Martian economy. Items that will also ensure the tribes survival will also be needed.

Team meeting 3 minutes

Discuss the items that teams need to take

 Assign roles and set goals for each tribe member to achieve by the end of the session.

Review the items

In world

Create tools of the trade

 Tribes need to locate images that reflect the trade of their tribe. Eg doctors, builders, farmers

 Upload the images to the textures library and use the newt textures in prims in their virtual world.