GAME-U is an after school program designed by Game Industry Professionals which teaches kids how to design and build their own video games and robots.
What students can learn:
- Game Design: From raw idea to finished product, you’ll bring your vision to life.
- 3D Modeling: Build your own world from the ground up — with the same tools the pros use.
- Programming: From artificial intelligence to physics engines, the code you write makes it all happen.
- Illustration: No words can say what a picture can show. Bring your imagination to life in full color.
- Sound Design: The creak of a door. The roar of an engine. The startling beauty of the right song at the right moment.
- Animation: Breathe life into your game. Give it motion, action, reaction, and expression.
- Creative Writing: Create the stories and characters that make your game unforgettable.
- Public Speaking: Your voice is unique. Stand up and make it heard.
- Teamwork: Work together. Share ideas. Give and get feedback. A strong team cannot be stopped.
Ages 6 - 8
Introduces our youngest students to the amazing worlds of game development, robotics, and art, together in one class.
Ages 8 - 10
Students will be introduced to new tools to help build key life skills and inspire them to continue learning.
Ages 10 - 12
Students can choose from various classes teaching game design, robotics and engineering, and digital art.
Begins with an 8-week introductory course. Students then move into our weekly “Apprentice” program and are able to enroll in our special elective classes.
Where game developers are made! Students will gain the skills needed to become independent game developers.
Girls Only Class
A programming course designed by girls, for girls! Students create their own apps, websites, games, and more in many widely-used languages.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Who are the Instructors?
We’re dedicated professionals with decades of experience making games for some of the top names in the industry, including LucasArts, Microsoft, Sony, EA, and Activision. More importantly we’re also parents. Our classes are designed to nurture your child’s unique interests, personality, and imagination.
- How are classes structured?
Each class starts with a 5-10 minute lesson from the instructor, followed by a 5-10 minute exploration period, during which the instructor will show examples from other games and discuss them with the class.
The next 30-40 minutes will be spent on hands-on learning, with each student working toward the completion of his or her individual project. During this time, the instructor will visit with each student to answer questions, provide feedback, and offer advice.
At the end of each class, the instructor will conduct a brief class discussion, set goals for the next class, and outline extra-credit assignments that can be completed by the students at home.
- How large are the classes?
GAME-U is built on the idea of personalized attention for every student. Class size may vary, but we’ll always keep classes small enough to ensure that every student gets quality one-on-one time with an instructor.
- How will I know what my kids are working on?
We encourage our students to share everything they accomplish at GAME-U with their parents. Parents are always welcome to stop in, observe class, and talk to the instructors.
At the completion of every 8-week course, students will have a new project to add to their Game-U portfolio. We want parents to explore and enjoy these finished projects with their kids. We think you’ll be impressed by what they’ve accomplished!
- Does my child need a computer?
During class, each student will work at an official GAME-U workstation. We prefer that students leave their own computers at home during class time.
If your child has a computer at home, we’ve designed our courses to work on a variety of systems, PC or Mac. Students with computers at home can take projects home to work on them in their own time, but it is not required.
Students who want to complete extra-credit assignments outside of class, but do not have access to computers, are welcome to sign-up to use a GAME-U workstation during our Open Lab hours.
- Does my child need to know computer programming?
Not at all! Students don’t need any prior knowledge of programming or game design. GAME-U courses are designed to be welcoming for the absolute beginner.
- Will my child be playing games all class?
Not at all. There’s no unsupervised playing of outside videogames during class. Any games demonstrated in the classroom will be part of an instructor lesson. Students will have time to test the games they build themselves, and we do encourage sharing and collaboration among students as they test and refine their ideas.
- Is there homework?
We’re not big on the word “homework,” but we definitely encourage our students to spend time outside of class working on their projects. Every week, we’ll outline extra credit quests that can help students earn GAME-U Achievements and add more depth to their course projects. Every time a student completes a course, challenge, or achievement, they earn GAME-U Experience Points (XP). These points are redeemable for cool prizes, and give students access to more advanced challenges and classes.