Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Have you heard of Pora Ora?

I must confess I haven't until recently. It is a new game-based learning tool for children.

Whether we like it or not the new generation is living in the world surrounded by all the latest technology.
Both of my sons play on the computer and ipad. Eddie who is not yet two years old, already enjoys age-appropriate apps on ipad (which incidentally he calls "uppity" for some reason) that teach him animal sounds and matching shapes, he loves solving the most simple puzzles, and yes we do silly things with him as well as laughing at the Talking Tom Cat (and his mischievous buddy Farting dog).

I visited the Pora Ora website for all the background information and I like how it engages with the parents.
Following the latest scandal with the Habbo Hotel, as a parent I ask the question: How safe is it for my child to join in the virtual world of Pora Ora? From what I understand we, parents, have a full control over the security settings in this game.
As a former teacher, I also found this piece of information very interesting:
"All games are currently mapped directly to the UK national curriculum and content is intelligently adjusted to challenge each and every child. We encourage a rounded educational profile in the child by making appropriate recommendations and suggestions as to which games they should play next. And, by linking to the curriculum, we can provide detailed progress reports to parents and teachers - outlining the child's strengths and weaknesses against national expectations. We will also be rolling out regional curriculum content in the coming months, to cover our ever-widening global community. "            

PORA ORA – THE GAME BASED LEARNING TOOL SWEEPING THROUGH SCHOOLS AND HOME


Pora Ora is the virtual world that is sweeping across the country and transforming the way that 5-12 year old children learn. With over 15,000 children already reaping its educational rewards, by the end of 2012 membership is expected to reach 500,000.


The free educational resource also engages with parents by providing them with regular reports identifying ways in which their children can improve learning and allows them to share their tips and advice with other parents, meaning they can feel fully part of their child’s education.


Pora Ora offers children the chance to explore an extensive virtual universe where they can play games, go on quests, and interact with the global community of Pora Ora children. With the motivational benefits of rewards and earning roobles, the Pora Ora currency, children can spend and manage their money as they learn. All content is geared towards the national curriculum allowing children to truly support their schooling.


The entire experience is completely safe for children and parents are given control of their child’s security settings and provided with notifications of all of their activity. The aim of Pora Ora is also to introduce children to social networking sites so parents can gradually relax their security settings as they get older, meaning by the age of 13 they are proficient and safe users of social networks.


“Children are growing up in the most fast moving period and stimulating period in history and need an education that reflects this. Our current education system remains granular and creativity has fallen down the priority list to the extent it is almost unrecognised in the education sector. The game is hugely popular with parents too as it allows them to be a part of their children’s learning and play a role in their progress. We believe that Pora Ora will become the world’s top online education entertainment destination for children.” Neil Gallagher, Caped Koala, CEO.


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