Middle school students have created an interactive video game called "Wack-A-Haman", to teach other children about Purim in a fun way. The kids, aged between 12 and 15, came up with the game as part of an initiative launched by non-profit organization Jewish Interactive (JI) - which is based in South Africa, the UK and Israel - in cooperation with the Martin J. Gottlieb Day School of Jacksonville in Florida.
Over the past few months, teams of children created various video games, and JI picked Whack-A-Haman for coding and production. The games involved trying to "whack" the Purim villain, while answering questions about the festive Jewish holiday. The game is now available on Google Play and iTunes.
"This exciting collaboration with the MJGDS students and teacher has taught me that even when we are on different continents, through today's technology we are able to work together on a meaningful project, mentor the school and produce a wonderful product," said Corinne Ossendryver, JI instructional designer and operations manager.
The project provided students with the opportunity to experience the step-by-step process of creating a video game from start to finish, taking on the positions of art director, audio engineer, quality control and project manager.
"My favorite part in creating this game was brainstorming the ideas that we could do," said Casey B, an MJGDS student who took the role of project manager. "I was in charge of the entire game and I worked with each person to see what they were creating. I also liked to be able to see each step of the game and I loved being able to be apart of each step of the way."