A virtual learning space purpose-built for Key Stage 2 students covering marine ecosystems and environmental responsibility in light of our climate emergency.

91% of students have been negatively impacted by Covid-19, globally. Ocyan aims to turn that around. By providing learning resources to children who have been homeschooled as a result of the pandemic, a number of things are achieved: stress relief for busy carers, filling in curriculum gaps, increase in ocean literacy and environmental activism, but above all, educational continuity.
After learning that 15.4 million students in the UK have been negatively affected by the Coronavirus pandemic, of which over ⅓ (6.3 million) are within the 9-12 age bracket, we wanted to offer an immersive, 'beyond-the-classroom' experience in times that otherwise feel greatly disrupted.
This is the landing page: all of the location pins represent a different marine ecosystem, and can be identified upon hovering. By clicking on each, you will be taken to the respective page to learn more.
Each page has information curated specifically for children, and uses a variety of media to express different points of interest. At the end of each page, there is a quiz to reinforce learning through gamification. Once all the quizzes have been completed successfully, the user will have 'unlocked' the X on the map. This leads them to a narrative about Ocyan City - inspired by the Lost City of Atlantis, but with the modern twist of pollution and littering.
This is the beginning of the narrative. The Seahorse is OCYAN's mascot which travels around the website with the user. The default user's name is 'Explorer' but this is customisable on the pre-landing page. The background of the page changes from a light gradient to a dark gradient as the user gets deeper into the ocean and the story. No spoilers here, but there are plenty of clues on the page to help figure it out.
There is an optional epilogue that wraps up the story and encourages the user to take environmental responsibility. In future iterations of the site, we plan to offer certification, as a way of incentivising completion and also legitimising the platform, doing further user testing, and increasing the overall accessibility. OCYAN was coded from scratch as a part of Code First Girls' month-long Hackathon: the Hack from Home. The entire process was a rewarding learning experience, and one that I shall continue to push forward with the team.

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MA Publishing Student