Summative Assessment Using RPG Maker VX Ace in an AP Physics C classroom for 12th Grade Students

The Context for My Lesson

This lesson will be delivered to an AP Physics C class at Oak Ridge Military Academy (ORMA), where I currently teach. According to the College Board, students should have taken or be concurrently taking Calculus before beginning AP Physics C. (College Board, 2014) Unfortunately, due to a small and diverse student population at the Academy, many Cadets will only have an Algebra II level of mathematics upon entering my class. Last school year, my Physics class had 8 students. Next year, I already have 10 enrolled. There is an average of 7 students per classroom at ORMA, and a student to teacher ratio of 6.8:1. The largest class last year in our school was 9th grade Earth / Environmental Science with 14 students. The smallest class in our school was Art History with two students. These small class sizes are extremely beneficial to both the teacher and the students. ORMA serves 96 boarding students in the 7th through 12th grade from a diverse background of origin. They range from all across the United States, China, Russia, Latin America, the Caribbean, Europe and the Middle East.

As an end of the year summative assessment, all of the current year’s materials will be assessed, including, but not limited to, one dimensional kinematics, two dimensional kinematics, energy, power, work, waves, magnetism and electricity. Since these students will be taking an AP exam run by the College Board, I do not want my students’ final grade to be based on an exam where only 6 out of 52,000 students last year were able to make a 100. (2015 AP Exam Score Distributions, 2015). Instead, their final exam will be a fun activity that will allow for a review before their AP exam.  An example midterm I have used in the past would be a comic book a friend and I wrote and illustrated, The Legend of Notwen:

 

The Standard(s) this Lesson Meets

The following questions will be asked of the player throughout the game. For each question, I will list the North Carolina Standard Course of Study (NCSCOS) Essential Standard and Clarifying Objective associated with them.

What is the average velocity of a Canadian Goose that traveled 4828 km in 60 hours?
Phy.1.1.2 Analyze motion in one dimension using time, distance, displacement, velocity, and acceleration.

The height of a wave is called _______
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity.

Light can be _____
Phy.2.2.3 Compare mechanical and electromagnetic waves in terms of wave characteristics and behavior (specifically sound and light).

What is the length of a simple pendulum whose period is 1 second?
Phy.1.3.1 Analyze the motion of objects involved in completely elastic and completely inelastic collisions by using the principles of conservation of momentum and conservation of energy.

What is the kinetic energy of a 3 kg ball that is rolling at 2 m/s?
Phy.2.1.2 Compare the concepts of potential and kinetic energy and conservation of total mechanical energy in the description of the motion of objects.

What is the most concentrated form of Energy?
Phy.2.1.1 Interpret data on work and energy presented graphically and numerically

What is the velocity of a jump rope that has a .5 m wavelength passing a certain point 4 times per second?
Phy.2.2.3 Compare mechanical and electromagnetic waves in terms of wave characteristics and behavior (specifically sound and light).

A wave is moving at a velocity of 5 m/s. If it has a frequency of 2.5 Hz, what is its wavelength?
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity.

Light is a type of ________ wave
Phy.2.2.3 Compare mechanical and electromagnetic waves in terms of wave characteristics and behavior (specifically sound and light).

If the wavelength of a transverse wave is 23 km, and it’s speed is 4.5 km/s, what is it’s frequency?
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity.

A hair dryer requires 11A of current from a 110 V outlet.  How much power does it use?
Phy.2.3.4 Analyze electric systems in terms of their energy and power.

Three resistors with values of 18, 26, and 9 ohms are in series. What is the resistance?
Phy.2.3.5 Analyze systems with multiple potential differences and resistors connected in series and parallel circuits, both conceptually and mathematically, in terms of voltage, current and resistance.

Find the current through a 12-ohm resistive circuit when 24 volts is applied.
Phy.2.3.2 Differentiate the behavior of moving charges in conductors and insulators.

Three resistors with values of 15, 41, and 58 ohms are in parallel. What is the resistance?
Phy.2.3.5 Analyze systems with multiple potential differences and resistors connected in series and parallel circuits, both conceptually and mathematically, in terms of voltage, current and resistance.

Ultrasonic waves are greater than _____ Hz
Phy.2.2.3 Compare mechanical and electromagnetic waves in terms of wave characteristics and behavior (specifically sound and light).

A spring has .02 J of elastic potential energy when it is compressed .05 m. What is its spring constant?
Phy.1.3.1 Analyze the motion of objects involved in completely elastic and completely inelastic collisions by using the principles of conservation of momentum and conservation of energy.

When two waves are added and the resultant is difference between the pulses, it is ______
Phy.2.2.2 Analyze wave behaviors in terms of transmission, reflection, refraction and interference.

The wavelength of a sound wave is 1.13m and the frequency is 301 Hz. What is the speed of the wave?
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity

10 waves pass a dock every 16 seconds. What is the frequency?
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity

How much work is done on a 16 N sack of potatoes when you lift the sack 1.5 m?
Phy.2.1.1 Interpret data on work and energy presented graphically and numerically.

A ______ is a disturbance that transmits energy through matter or space
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity.

Throw a baseball up with a velocity of 8 m/s. What is it’s displacement after 4 seconds if it can keep failing?
Phy.1.2.3 Explain forces using Newton’s laws of motion as well as the universal law of gravitation.

_____ is whenever a fluid encounters an object
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity.

The empire state building is 443 m tall. How long will it take a penny to hit the ground?
Phy.1.1.2 Analyze motion in one dimension using time, distance, displacement, velocity, and acceleration.

A pencil drops 2.5 meters. What is the final velocity?
Phy.1.1.2 Analyze motion in one dimension using time, distance, displacement, velocity, and acceleration.

If a cannonball was launched 1988 meters with a hang time of 15.4 sec, how long to reach maximum height?”
Phy.1.1.3 Analyze motion in two dimensions using angle of trajectory, time, distance, displacement, velocity, and acceleration

______ is the interaction between two objects with mass
Phy.1.2.3 Explain forces using Newton’s laws of motion as well as the universal law of gravitation.

_______ force is the compression of any two surfaces against each other.
Phy.1.2.3 Explain forces using Newton’s laws of motion as well as the universal law of gravitation.

An object is pushed with 10 N of force and the net force is balanced. How much force of friction is present?
Phy.1.2.4 Explain the effects of forces (including weight, normal, tension and friction) on objects.

245 N of force is applied to an object, accelerating it at a rate of 4.2 m/s/s. What is the mass of the object?
Phy.1.2.4 Explain the effects of forces (including weight, normal, tension and friction) on objects.

A pebble is thrown vertically with an initial velocity of 10 m/s. How high does it go?
Phy.1.1.2 Analyze motion in one dimension using time, distance, displacement, velocity, and acceleration.

A bomb is thrown down with a velocity of 8.65 m/s at a height of 14.3 m. How long does it take to hit?
Phy.1.1.2 Analyze motion in one dimension using time, distance, displacement, velocity, and acceleration.

Coulombic Constant is _____ (Nmm)/(CC)
Phy.3.1.3 Explain how Coulomb’s law relates to the electrostatic interactions among charged objects

The speed of sound is approximately _____ m/s
Phy.2.2.3 Compare mechanical and electromagnetic waves in terms of wave characteristics and behavior (specifically sound and light).

______ refers to the internal energy present in a system by virtue of its temperature.
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity

A 50 N girl climbs a 3 meter flight of stairs in 3 seconds. What is her power?
Phy.2.1.3 Explain the relationship among work, power and energy.

A 755 N diver drops from a board 10 m above the water. What was his speed before striking the water?
Phy.1.3.1 Analyze the motion of objects involved in completely elastic and completely inelastic collisions by using the principles of conservation of momentum and conservation of energy.

Infrasonic waves are less then ____ Hz
Phy.2.2.3 Compare mechanical and electromagnetic waves in terms of wave characteristics and behavior (specifically sound and light).

A 50 g kid climbs 500 cm up a rope at a constant speed. The kids power output is 200 W. How long does it take him to climb the rope?
Phy.2.1.3 Explain the relationship among work, power and energy.

When a wave hits a fixed boundary, it is _________
Phy.2.2.2 Analyze wave behaviors in terms of transmission, reflection, refraction and interference.

On top of a mountain, a pendulum 1.55 m long has a period of 2.51 s. What is the acceleration due to gravity there?
Phy.1.2.3 Explain forces using Newton’s laws of motion as well as the universal law of gravitation.

A spring is compressed 10m when a force of 5N is applied. How far does it compress when 10N is applied?
Phy.1.3.1 Analyze the motion of objects involved in completely elastic and completely inelastic collisions by using the principles of conservation of momentum and conservation of energy.

Sound is a type of ________ wave
Phy.2.2.3 Compare mechanical and electromagnetic waves in terms of wave characteristics and behavior (specifically sound and light).

What force would be required to compress a 20 cm long spring to 15 cm if the spring constant is 30 N/m?
Phy.1.3.1 Analyze the motion of objects involved in completely elastic and completely inelastic collisions by using the principles of conservation of momentum and conservation of energy.

A pendulum is observed to complete 23 full cycles in 58 seconds. Determine the period.
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity.

What is the potential energy of the spring with a spring constant of 100 m/s if it is stretched 2 meters?
Phy.2.1.2 Compare the concepts of potential and kinetic energy and conservation of total mechanical energy in the description of the motion of objects.

Average acceleration due to gravity on Earth is ______.
Phy.1.2.3 Explain forces using Newton’s laws of motion as well as the universal law of gravitation.

What is the kinetic energy of a large 15 kg piece of ice falls from a roof 8 m above the ground?
Phy.2.1.2 Compare the concepts of potential and kinetic energy and conservation of total mechanical energy in the description of the motion of objects.

A lizard accelerates from 2 m/s to 10 m/s in 4 seconds. What was his average acceleration?
Phy.1.1.2 Analyze motion in one dimension using time, distance, displacement, velocity, and acceleration.

If 700 J of work is done to an object as a result of 17 N of force being applied, how far will the object move?
Phy.2.1.3 Explain the relationship among work, power and energy.

You are standing 95 feet away from a light source. Then you stand 5 feet away. What is the difference in brightness?
Phy.2.2.3 Compare mechanical and electromagnetic waves in terms of wave characteristics and behavior (specifically sound and light).

Which electromagnetic wave has the shortest wave length?
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity.

What is the amp of a 2 mm long cross section of a wire is isolated and 20 C of charge is determined to pass through it?
Phy.2.3.5 Analyze systems with multiple potential differences and resistors connected in series and parallel circuits, both conceptually and mathematically, in terms of voltage, current and resistance.

What is the speed of an electromagnetic wave?
Phy.2.2.1 Analyze how energy is transmitted through waves, using the fundamental characteristics of waves: wavelength, period, frequency, amplitude, and wave velocity.

(Public Schools of North Carolina, 2016)

Along with the Standard Course of Study, this test meets many of the 21st Century Skills, including but not limited to, the use of technology as a tool to research, organize, evaluate and communicate information, as well as the use of digital technologies, communication/networking tools and social networks appropriately to access, manage, integrate, evaluate and create information to successfully function in a knowledge economy (P21, 2016).

 

The Media I am Integrating

RPG Maker VX Ace, originally called Tsukūru VX Ace in Japan, was released in the United States on March 15th , 2012. It is the 6th US installment to the RPG Maker franchise. (ツクールってなに?( What is Cool? Outline of Tsukūru ), 2010) This program allows people with little to no coding knowledge to build full RPG style video games. I started using RPG Maker 95 when I was 10 years old, and I now teach RPG Maker VX Ace in my Logic and Coding class.

https://drive.google.com/a/appstate.edu/file/d/0B0HBeWZbDDfOeDYydTdQcXpRa28/view?usp=sharing

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The game I created works as an educational tool for my Physics students. As the game begins, you are introduced to the world by the evil Mr. Hagen. He explains how the controls work, and how he has trapped the citizens of Amro (which is ORMA backwards) in crystal. Each crystal has a Physics question etched into it, and the citizens can only be saved if the question is answered correctly. Mr. Hagen explains that the player has two hours to save as many citizens as he/she can. For each citizen that is saved, the player gains 3 levels. At the end of the two hours, whatever level the player has earned, will be their final grade. 100 is the maximum grade they can receive.

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At this point, the player will be able to pick which class they would like to be, as well as what their characters name will be. While the different classes have different powers, they make no difference in the Physics questions asked. This is more for making the student believe they are truly playing a video game. The name of the avatar, as well as the class, only makes a difference if they plan on playing the game as a traditional RPG.

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After their name and class are chosen, the student is placed in the world of Amro to save trapped citizens. Most citizens can be found within the towns scattered around the world. Once a citizen is found, the student must answer a multiple choice Physics question in order to gain levels.

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Along with finding trapped citizens, I have also included multiple hidden dungeons, pets, bosses, and even a final fight with Mr. Hagen for students who finish early. These secrets allow the students to get more excited about the idea of playing a video game as their final exam.

The Rationale for Integrating the Media into this Lesson

Video games have been used as educational tools since I was in middle school. From typing programs to Oregon Trail, video games have been part of my educational career. The learning principals of gaming include just-in-time learning, critical thinking, increased memory retention, emotional interest, and learning through images. (Levasseur, 2011)  In a TEDxSFED by Aran Levasser, he describes using the video game Peacemaker to teach about the conflict between Palestine and Isreal. (Levin, 2011) In an article by Scientific America, more then half of the teachers surveyed found that video games motivate struggling students. (Malykhina, 2014)

With only .01% of students receiving a perfect score on last year’s AP Physics C exam (2015 AP Exam Score Distributions, 2015), it can be hard to motivate confidence in my students. By peaking the interest of my students through an adventurous role playing game, I hope to spark a belief in my students that if they can save the world of Amro, then a College Board test should be a piece of cake.

The Integration of the Media or Technology Into the Lesson

After finishing our year’s worth of material, I will give each student a copy of the Final Exam review sheet:

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On exam day, instead of meeting in my classroom, I will instruct the students to meet in the computer lab. Prior to the exam, I will upload the video game to the ORMA Seagate Expansion Drive in which students have access to. Once the students log into the computer, I will instruct them to drag the program onto their desktop, and begin the game. The reason I will tell them to do this is so that they will not be sharing each other’s saved games. The exam period is 2 hours at Oak Ridge Military Academy. During this time, I will be walking around the classroom to help students, not with Physics questions, but with game mechanics, such as how to find more questions, as well as how to fight battles. At ORMA, students are not allowed to leave the exam period until the full two hours are over. Usually, students get extremely bored if they finish early. Hopefully, the video game will keep the students occupied for the full 2 hours, even if they have already received a score of 100 by exploring dungeons and secret areas.

My Evaluation of the Media Integration

I believe the method in which I integrated the RPG Maker VX Ace content into my lesson will be extremely beneficial to my students. Not only will it help my students with the content objectives assigned by the College Board, but I also believe it will help struggling students gain confidence for the AP exam. Since AP Physics C is a difficult course, I think by differentiating the lesson from an aural style to a kinesthetic style, it will help appeal to more learning styles and attain a higher success rate of student understanding.

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Back in 2013, I attempted a less ambitious version of an RPG Maker VX Ace final exam with a different class. The biggest issues I had were with students who have never played an RPG style video game not knowing what to do. That is why I added a tutorial in the beginning on how to play. Also, in the old game, there were coding issues in which questions could be skipped or even considered correct by pressing the escape key when they were asked. One student received a 100 without even answering a single question! I was able to play test the new game multiple times, but since I do not know what a student may do, there may still be bugs and glitches that will need to be repaired.

Overall, I am extremely excited to implement the RPG Maker VX Ace content into my Physic classroom in order to create a  better and more engaging summative assessment for my students.

Work Cited

2015 AP Exam Score Distributions. (2015). Retrieved from Total Registration: http://www.totalregistration.net/AP-Exam-Registration-Service/2015-AP-Exam-Score-Distributions.php

College Board. (2014). AP® PHYSICS C: MECHANICS. Retrieved from College Board: http://media.collegeboard.com/digitalServices/pdf/ap/ap-course-overviews/ap-physics-c-mechanics-course-overview.pdf

Levasseur, A. (2011, June 13). The Case for Videogames as Powerful Tools for Learning. Retrieved from EducationShift: http://mediashift.org/2011/06/the-case-for-videogames-as-powerful-tools-for-learning164/

Levin, H. (2011). Aran Levasseur – Peacemaker: Video Games and Learning. Retrieved from Vinemo: https://vimeo.com/22398353

Malykhina, E. (2014, September 12). Fact or Fiction?: Video Games Are the Future of Education. Retrieved from Scientific America: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/fact-or-fiction-video-games-are-the-future-of-education/

P21. (2016). P21: Partnership for 21st Century Learning. Retrieved from Framwork for 21st Century Learning: http://www.p21.org/our-work/p21-framework

Public Schools of North Carolina. (2016). North Carolina Essential Standards: Physics. Retrieved from NC Standard Course of Study: http://www.dpi.state.nc.us/docs/curriculum/science/scos/support-tools/new-standards/science/physics.pdf

ツクールってなに?( What is Cool? Outline of Tsukūru ). (2010). Retrieved from Tsukūru: http://tkool.jp/outline/index

Images: Hagen, D. (2016)

 

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