Free educational game on the Caribbean bio-economy to be launched this month by IICA Jamaica
News > The Caribbean
By STEM Caribbean | Posted on September 12, 2020
Learning about the bio-economy in the Caribbean has been given a new fun and interactive twist in a free gamified course called Bio-economy World developed by the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) in partnership with SchoolToonz, a multi-media company. The course is designed in the form of a play-to-learn experience that integrates game-design with non-game contexts and is expected to launch this month.
Rich and vivid features in the course, such as engaging dialogue and appealing visuals, add to the thrill of learning. The course promotes topics such as climate smart agriculture and the integration of sustainable natural resource management. It also promotes how science and technology can be used to solve problems, work smarter, and create new businesses.
With thousands of Caribbean students under lockdown because of COVID-19, IICA Jamaica found that its goals would be well served by creating opportunities for anyone across the Caribbean to learn virtually and be engaged in entertaining activities and gameplay through the Bio-economy World gamified course.
“It is an exciting way to learn, especially as we embrace online education during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said the IICA team.
The game takes you on an adventurous journey with 16-year-old Lateisha Learner from a rural community in the Caribbean concerned about her parents’ farm. Determined to save the farm from the ongoing effects of climate change, she seeks out knowledge and solutions to preserve her family’s livelihood.
In the game, Latesha is tasked with relaying the knowledge she gains to her father while being introduced to the bio-economy. She learns from experts and interesting characters (researchers, farmers, entrepreneurs, teachers, and even robots), who guide her on the adventure. Throughout the adventurous journey, players gain new insights on science, technology, agriculture, and business as they travel through different locations such as villages, towns, and islands.
While the players complete this exhilarating adventure, they earn points and prizes once they gain information and take on challenges. The number of those rewards increases as the players gain more information and complete the challenges.
Points and prizes earned are stored in a bio-inventory assigned to each player, which is also a reference library that describes how the prizes earned can be used to save Lateisha’s family farm.
This interactive and educational game is anticipated to be released on multiple platforms (web, PC, iOS, and Android devices) by the end of this month and is open to anyone. To download the game, visit the IICA’s website.