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New History Game - 4/16/08
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Betwixt Folly and Fate

Eduweb collaborated with Colonial Williamsburg on Betwixt Folly and Fate, an immersive 3-D role playing game that places players in 1774 Williamsburg as one of four characters:
  • Chloe, an enslaved house servant
  • Henry, a free black carpenter
  • Mary, a midwife's assistant
  • George, a young gentleman
In each role, players face the challenges of daily life in early America while learning about the social classes and customs of the time. For example, Henry, a free black carpenter, must find enough work as a journeyman to pay his mother's rent. As Henry seeks carpentry work and other tasks that come his way, the player learns about facets of ordinary eighteenth-century life as well as the opportunities and constraints facing a free black tradesman in 1774.

As players pursue their characters' goals, they explore a large portion of eighteenth-century Williamsburg, Virginia, roaming the streets and meeting people in shops, taverns, the Courthouse, and private homes. The town is populated with dozens of characters, including George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Patrick Henry. Players may also bargain for goods with shopkeepers and try their hand at several colonial games.

eduweb's role: Concept design, game design, scriptwriting, graphic design, 3D modeling and animation, and production.

Betwixt Folly and Fate game is one component of Colonial Williamsburg's A Day in the Life program, which includes an eight-episode DVD series and teacher materials. Go to A Day in the Life Web site for more information, a preview vidoe, downloadable demo, and ordering information.

Talking to other characters in 1774 Williamsburg
"Eduweb's creativity and artistic skills, along with their expertise in student learning methods, bring new and innovative concepts to our projects. They are consistently able to take our content and assets and work collaboratively and effectively from planning to launch. We love the results, and we love working with them."

Frances Burroughs
Director of Operations, Educational Programs
Colonial Williamsburg Foundation

eduweb news - 4/16/08
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"Best of the Web" award honors eduweb work

Great Chicago Stories, an interactive Web site with components developed by eduweb for the Chicago History Museum, has won the Best of the Web award for Education at this year's Museums & the Web conference. This is the fourth time since 2000 in which an eduweb project has won this award in this international juried competition.

Judges called the site "an exemplary educational resource for learning about history through storytelling" and said "I can easily imagine teachers treasuring it."

Heidi Moisan, School Programs Manager at the Chicago History Museum, says, "Eduweb created a marvelous map-based interactive that anchored our historical fiction narratives in their respective Chicago neighborhoods, broadening the scope of our project in rich, unexpected ways. They were amazingly prompt, creative, and patient with our development process and we're thoroughly delighted with the outcome. We will most certainly work with eduweb in the future."

Great Chicago Stories - Screenshot

New Health Science Game - 3/25/08
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Dental Defenders
Delta Dental of New Jersey

Danger lurks at every meal. Ordinary foods coat teeth with sugar, attracting bacteria and acids that cause tooth decay.

But the Dental Defenders are on the job! The Defenders patrol the mouths of children everywhere, protecting their teeth from everyday meals and snacks. Join the team and begin your patrol!

eduweb's role: Concept design, interactivity design, writing, graphic design, 3D modeling and animation, and production.

Brushing teeth as a Dental Defender

New Reading Strategies Site - 3/11/08
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Into the Book
Wisconsin Educational Communications Board

Explore eight reading strategies for K-4 students and teachers in this interactive and in-depth reading comprehension site:
  • Make meaningful connections to climb to the summit of the Mountain of Understanding
  • Summarize the thrilling life of a talkative pirate
  • Evaluate books to successfully explore a distant solar system
  • Infer the real news in letters from pen pals
  • And much more!
Students can watch online videos, play learning games and interactives, and share their creations with friends and family. Teachers can delve into rich information and teaching resources for each strategy, through 10-minute professional development videos, lesson plans, video and audio clips, downloads, and more.

Eduweb collaborated with the State of Wisconsin's Educational Communications Board on the design and development of the entire site, and particularly on the playful learning games and interactives that give students valuable practice with each reading strategy.

eduweb's role: Concept design, interactivity design, writing, graphic design, illustration, animation, and production.

Into the Book: Home page

Into the Book: Making Connections Activity
"Our challenge was to create activities that could help young children understand and practice complex concepts like synthesizing or evaluating — and have fun at the same time. Eduweb was quick to grasp the gist of what we wanted to teach, and then managed to turn our educators' vision into something delightful to look at and fun to use. As they guided us through the development process, they continually looked for solutions that would engage students in more meaningful ways. We are well satisfied with both the developoment process and the final product."

Peggy Garties
Wisconsin Educational Communications Board

New History Site - 11/26/07
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America by Air Online Activities
National Air & Space Museum, Smithsonian Insitution

Explore the history of commercial air travel in these online companions to NASM's new exhibit. Navigate your way along an early airmail route. Make a newsreel about the first around-the-world flight by scheduled airlines. See if you would have qualified to be a stewardess in the 1950s.

Eduweb collaborated with museum staff to adapt gallery interactives for the Web, developing engaging and meaningful ways to explore the stories, artifacts, and experiences of air travel.

eduweb's role: Interactivity design, research and writing, graphic design, illustration, and production.

America by Air: Contact Flying interactive

New Art Education Site - 7/15/07
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Lost Wax, Found Bronze
National Museum of Wildlife Art

Lost wax bronze casting is an ancient and complex process. It can be hard to visualize what goes on inside the molds. Lost Wax Found Bronze reveals the major steps in bronze casting by following the creation of wildlife sculptor Gerry Balciar's work, Little Bear. High quality video showing Balciar and foundry artisans at work, along with close-up images of each mold and model, documents the process from start to finish.

eduweb's role: Information architecture, video scriptwriting, production and editing, database programming, and Web production.

Lost Wax Found Bronze - Screenshot
"The process of working with eduweb on the production of Lost Wax/Found Bronze has been a pleasure. We have worked with eduweb on four interactive programs and look forward to future projects with them. Their professionalism is unmatched, their skill unbounded, and their product unequaled."

Amy Goicoechea
Associate Curator of Education
National Museum of Wildlife Art

eduweb News - 4/10/07
eduweb publishes results from learning style research study

eduweb has published final results from its research study, funded by the National Science Foundation, of learning styles and online interactives. eduweb principal and Principal Investigator David T. Schaller will present the results at several upcoming conferences, including Museums and the Web and the annual conference of the American Association of Museums.

New Interactive History Site - 4/1/07
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Great Chicago Stories Interactive History Map
Chicago History Museum

This series of stories for elementary and high school students bring Chicago's history alive through experiences of fictional but typical kids living in Chicago over the last century. A companion to each story is an interactive map that shows high-resolution photographs of the locations described in the story, both at the time of the story's setting and the present. Using Yahoo! Maps within the activity, users can explore the story's neighborhood and see where it is in relation to their own home or school. Artifacts from the collections of the Chicago History Museum connect the objects of everyday life to the people who might have used them.

eduweb's role: Information architecture, video scriptwriting, production and editing, database programming, and Web production.

Great Chicago Stories - Screenshot
"eduweb created a marvelous map-based interactive that anchored our historical fiction narratives in their respective Chicago neighborhoods, broadening the scope of our project in rich, unexpected ways. They were amazingly prompt, creative, and patient with our development process and we're thoroughly delighted with the outcome. We will most certainly work with eduweb in the future."

Heidi Moisan
School Programs Manager
Chicago History Museum

eduweb News - 12/19/06
eduweb celebrates ten years in business

This month marks the tenth year in business for St. Paul-based Educational Web Adventures. The firm is marking this anniversary by shortening its official name to, simply, "eduweb," its long-time nickname and domain name. "This change has been on our minds for quite a while," said founder and principal David T. Schaller. "It's clear and concise. It doesn't make us sound hipper than we actually are. And many people already know us by this name, so it doesn't require an expensive marketing campaign. That's good enough for me."

Schaller noted another benefit of the name change. "Frankly, our original name was a mouthful. It just takes awhile to roll it off your tongue. An internal study indicates that we can expect an immediate 7% productivity gain based on that time savings. Two syllables versus nine may not seem like a big difference, but it adds up over the course of the day."

Susan Nagel, eduweb's Educator-Treasurer, supports the name change, though she does admit that it has a downside. "With winter coming on, we benefited from all the hot air produced each time someone spoke the old name. I think we'll see an impact in our heating bills." However, she added, "These guys still produce a lot of hot air, so it shouldn't really affect our bottom line."

While not a runaway success story like Google or, eduweb has clearly defied the expectations of knowledgeable observers on the scene in 1996. "I had just quit my job due to the birth of our first child," recalled Susan Nagel, Schaller's spouse. "I figured Dave would see this as a good time to go out and find a real job, or at least change a diaper, but no, he's at the dining room computer, pecking away at his Web site." Fortunately for their marriage, Schaller did luck out and obtain a client, persuading the Minnesota Zoo's Tiger Information Center to develop several online adventure games. Schaller also soon persuaded Nagel, a licensed art teacher, to become his business partner and bring some badly-needed educational credibility to the firm.

In the decade since, eduweb has collaborated with more than forty organizations around the country on the development of nearly 200 digital learning projects. Despite their better judgment, a surprising number of these organizations have become ongoing clients. Longest lasting of these are Colonial Williamsburg and the JASON Project, each with eight years of hard-earned experience with the firm. In the past year, the Chicago History Museum, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Oregon Coast Aquarium, Temple University's Media Education Lab and ZamWorks have come aboard in search of the secret sauce for theory-driven online interactive learning that eduweb claims to have found.

In the spring, eduweb projects won two MUSE Awards from the American Association of Museums and the Top Prize in the Pirelli INTERNETional Award for Multimedia. The latter was unprecedented—a multimedia award with actual prize money—and inspired Schaller to go to Rome for the awards ceremony. He returned with new cultural understanding, particularly the discovery that awards ceremonies in Italy have better food than awards ceremonies in America.

From its humble beginnings in a dining room with a squealing baby, eduweb has clung to its vision of compelling digital learning experiences that aren't too lame compared to the other things that people can do in their free time. It took a big step toward that goal in September, when the National Science Foundation awarded the Minnesota Zoo and eduweb a grant to develop WolfQuest, a 3D role-play learning game about, not coincidentally, wolves. "We think this is our best chance yet to engage children's interest in a serious science topic," said Lead Producer Steve Allison-Bunnell. "If hunting elk, fighting other wolves, and peeing on things don't do the job, I don't know what will."

The eduweb team ends the year looking forward to new challenges in their second decade. "We've learned an awful lot about developing effective digital interactives over the past ten years," said Schaller. "On the other hand, eduweb is the same age as my ten-year-old son and he hasn't exactly got it all figured out, though he's certainly trying. Maybe we have as many discoveries awaiting us over the next decade as he does. I just hope they don't involve acne."

eduweb News - 10/25/06
eduweb and Minnesota Zoo Receive Grant for Learning Game

In partnership with the Minnesota Zoo, eduweb has been awarded a $508,253 informal education grant from the National Science Foundation. The grant will be used to create WolfQuest, an innovative learning game about wolf ecology.

WolfQuest brings the immersive, compelling drama and action of video games to informal science learning, creating a model for nationwide distribution. Designed for 9-13 year-olds, WolfQuest will teach wolf behavior and ecology through exciting gameplay and intense social interactions.

"With NSF's funding, we can develop a true learning game that will be as exciting and entertaining as commercial games on the market," said eduweb Principal David T. Schaller. "We're eager to tackle this challenge and push the boundaries of what a learning game can accomplish."

WolfQuest is set to launch in December 2007. The Web site is currently live and will be receiving regular updates on the development of the WolfQuest game.

New Zoo Resource Site - 10/23/06
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Teacher Resource Center
The Minnesota Zoo

The Minnesota Zoo's Teacher Resource Center offers many exciting resources to help teachers plan their next visit to the Minnesota Zoo, including:
  • Field trip planning materials
  • Orientation video for teachers, chaperones, and students.
  • Pre-visit, on-site, and post-visit activities and worksheets
  • Multimedia resources for browsing and downloading for student powerpoints and movies.
eduweb's role: Information architecture, video scriptwriting, production and editing, database programming, and Web production.

Teacher Resource Center screenshot

New Ecology Education Web Site - 10/9/06
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Zams Quest
Zam Works

Zam's Quest is a unique standards-based curriculum for 5th and 6th grade students that engages, empowers and activates kids to learn about nature and take action to address local conservation issues. In four sequential units, Zam.s Quest moves kids along a learning continuum. Using the time-tested, role play technique students are able to: understand different points of view in a conservation issue, successfully analyze an issue and discuss solutions, understand the complexity of today's problems, and personally take action on a local conservation dilemma.

The Zam's Quest Web site supports and extends the curriculum by offering:
  • Photos and video clips of the people and animals from each unit.
  • A Comic Book Maker that lets kids create and share their own stories and solutions for conservation issues.
  • Experts' blogs from the field
  • Spotlights on local conservation issues for regions around the country

eduweb's role: Information architecture, interactivity design, visual design, animation, programming, and production.

Zam's Quest screenshot

New Art Education Web Site - 10/1/06
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Learning Through Art
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

Learning Through Art encourages teachers and teaching artists to design art projects that support student learning across the curriculum. Recent research shows that this combination of activities helps students build important critical-thinking, art, and literacy skills.

This website provides two sets of tools for the classroom. The first explores how to facilitate class discussions around works of art, an approach we call "Inquiry with Art." The second is a database of selected Learning Through Art projects, or "Art Explorations," with links to additional related resources. Used individually or together, these resources can support teachers in creating an environment in which students are challenged to think, learn, and communicate.

eduweb's role: Information architecture, visual design, programming, and production.

Learning Through Art screenshot

eduweb Site Wins AASLH Award of Merit

Harvest of History, an interactive Web site developed by eduweb and the New York State Historical Association / The Farmers' Museum, has won an Award of Merit from the American Association for State and Local History. This award is one of the AASLH Leadership in History Awards, which is the most prestigious recognition for achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history.

Harvest of History: Screenshot

New Social Studies Web Site - 7/27/06
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My Pop Studio
Media Education Lab, Temple University

Ready to pop behind-the-scenes of the television you watch, magazines you read, music you listen to and websites you visit? Our "studios" let you take the reins. Create. Comment. Control. Explore your media, your way!

This Web site for 'tween-age girls promotes media literacy and gives girls a chance to create music, edit a TV show, publish a magazine and reflect on the role of digital media in their lives.
  • Create your own pop star and put her concert online for the world to enjoy!
  • Edit your own reality show, spinning the story the way you want!
  • Make your own celebrity magazine featuring you and your favorite actors and singers!
  • Test your multi-tasking abilities and find out how well you can do many things at the same time!
eduweb's role: Concept and content development, interactivity design, visual design, illustration, animation, programming, and production.

Create your own pop star, in  My Pop Studio
"eduweb's talented team of creative and technical professionals exceeded our expectations in every respect. With eduweb, we were able to realize our goals for the project and benefit from the insight and guidance and wisdom that eduweb's remarkable creative team has developed as a result of their 10-year track record in online multimedia production. Throughout the production process, we were standing on the shoulders of giants with eduweb on our team!"

Renee Hobbs
Associate Professor of Communication
Director, Media Education Lab
Temple University

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