PNC Innovation Zone at Whitaker Center encompasses the new Purposeful Gaming Studio and Select Medical Digital Cinema in a state-of-the-art space that engages today’s youth in the topics of science, technology, engineering and math. This is accomplished through purposeful gaming and innovative programming.
These new spaces have a special focus on experiential learning and deeper engagement in programming for students and families. Whitaker Center is committed to breaking boundaries and making STEM education programming accessible to everyone. This new project addresses gender and equity barriers, as well as bridges the digital divide that exists with underserved and underrepresented youth.
Programs will include:
In addition to educational programming, PNC Innovation Zone and Purposeful Gaming Studio will provide businesses and organizations transformative spaces to create, meet and connect.
Purposeful Gaming Studio on the Arcade Level of Whitaker Center is open for drop-in programming. Programs and activities will change from week to week, and include coding with Minecraft Education and Bloxels, building with Scrap Mechanic and Poly Bridge, and much more. Drop-in programs are included in your price of admission to Harsco Science Center.
Whitaker Center's newest program, Gamers and Coders, occurs every Wednesday from 9:30-11 am. These programs include STEAM topics for students grades 3-8. Each session will include innovative, technology-based activities designed to introduce and reinforce computational thinking skills. No prior experience is needed, and each session will aim to encourage exploration of a wide range of STEAM concepts. The cost is $8 per member and $12 per non-member. Only children need a ticket to attend.
Coding: Animation - The Amazing World of Gumball Cartoon TV Series - Agest 8+ -Guests will learn how to animate a short story using Scratch coding language in the cartoon style from the tv series “The Amazing World of Gumball”. The goal of the activity is to introduce new mechanics such as looping, conditionals, movement and painting animations. A “glitch” is causing miscommunication between characters and it’s up to the learner to problem solve and create a new dialogue. Learners can customize their story through costume changes, character selections and scene selection. The activity is typically 45 mins.
Coding: Game - Platform Jumper (Intro & Design) - Ages 8+ - Guests will learn how to code the basics to a platforming game. Platforming games introduce collision detections and physic simulations between the character and other game objects in the scene. Coding mechanics will include “if & then statements”, where the learner will experience how interactions with game objects influence their various movements to reach a goal. Guests can customize their experience by choosing their own sprite, in-game rewards, and platforms.
Team Play: Esports - Ages 8+ - Multiplayer games will be available for guests to play as a team or individually in a local online game format. Game modes can be tailored to include a squad (3 or 4 players) playing together to achieve a goal or compete amongst each other. Titles include: Fall Guys, KartDrift Racing, Rocket League, MineCraft for Education and KnockOut City (Dodgeball).
Campers moving into grades 3-5 who also attended Innovation Zone Camp in the Summer of 2022 are eligible to expand their learning to the next level! Topics covered but not limited to include Coding with applications to robotics. Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality applications will be explored as well. Any software applications from the previous camp will be available for deeper investigation and learning opportunities.
Innovation Camp for Gr 3-4 will focus on basic Block Based coding using Minecraft for Education, coding with applications for robotics in STEAM areas of Art and Engineering. Campers will have an opportunity to learn to work cooperatively through purposeful gaming using programs such as Knockout City and Rocket League. Virtual reality and Augmented reality applications will be explored as well.
Innovation Camp for Gr 5-6 will focus on basic coding with applications in robotics, creating games and game worlds using Roblox Studio, and Minecraft for Education. Campers will have an opportunity to learn to work cooperatively through purposeful gaming using programs such as Knockout City and Rocket League. Virtual reality and Augmented reality applications will be explored as well.
Innovation Camp for Grades 7-8 will focus on coding, game world design, and modding applications using Minecraft for Education, and basic video game creation using the Game Maker software program. Coding with applications to robotics and drones will be explored as well. Campers will have an opportunity to learn to work cooperatively through purposeful gaming using programs such as Knockout City and Rocket League. Virtual reality and Augmented reality applications will be explored as well.
Campers moving into grades 6-8 who also attended Innovation Zone Camp in the Summer of 2022 are eligible to expand their learning to the next level! Topics covered but not limited to include Coding with applications to robotics and drones. Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality applications, 3D modeling with Blender and music creation with Ableton.
Looking for even more innovation?
We still have spots open in our Innovation Summer Camps. Learn more here.
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