TENMARKS MATH TEACH
Scaffolded Comprehensive Math Curriculum Lessons animated to Aid Teachers
CLIENT: TenMarks Education, An Amazon Subsidiary
ROLE: Visual Design | Animation
LOCATION: Foster City | California
YEAR: January 2014
The creation of 250+ Math Teach Lessons from the K-12 Math Curriculum is a collaborated team effort of 16 members of the Content Team comprising of Curriculum Developers, Designers, Editors and the QA team.
ROLE: What started as an in-house Authoring Tool for the Curriculum Developers soon became a playground for us designers. I dove deep during the early stages of its development, and discovered areas where the tool could vastly improve employee efficiencies. I identified key tools like 'paste in place', 'group tool' and 'short cut keys', and demonstrated the need to the Engineering team, to show them how much time our content team could save, especially the designers. Once some of the feature requests were implemented, there was a spike in production by 20% overall.
Through our experimentation and exploration phase of the tool we designed and developed visually engaging scaffolded animation techniques that amplified the math concepts tremendously. With constant demos seen by the Curriculum Developers they were encouraged to think differently in the way they created their lesson plans.
CHALLENGES: For a graphic designer, space is a very valuable element to layout a design. The Math Lessons at times had a lot of elements being animated all at once, and finding a right balance between the use of white space and the content on the page was crucial in order to keep things legible and clear. Luckily having learned the authoring tool over time creating several of these Math Lessons, it made it possible for me to juggle with all the components and produce meaningful presentations.
As more Curriculum Developers understood the level of the animation we were capable of creating, their writing of Math Lessons began to get more detailed. While the request for elaborate backgrounds and visuals increased, the challenge to work with a rudimentary tool became more cumbersome. A simple feature request to group all elements on a page became necessary at this point. As the tool was in its nascent stage of development, a request of this nature would take time. I was challenged by the Engineers as to why this was required. I demonstrated the insane amount of animations of individual moving parts involved to represent basic concepts like place value charts. This finally helped them understand our need. Since we were under a tight deadline, our team came up with work arounds without the use of this feature and completed the lessons in time for our Back to School Launch.