The FORTune of ROSS
The “FORTune of ROSS” is a collaborative research project that began in November 2016 after the announcement of “The Journey from Fort Ross” competition. To tell the truth, as a teacher I was sure this challenging contest would draw my students’ attention. In fact, they are very motivated, enthusiastic, talented and creative teenagers who are very active not only in class but in extracurricular activities. For instance, Ivan is fond of Social Studies and Art. Anastasia is a gifted dancer and a remarkable designer. Ilya is an outstanding programmer who is able to create perfect videos, various kinds of presentations and what not! Besides, all of them are fond of history and languages (they have been studying English, French and Chinese for several years). The topic attracted them from the first sight so we got down to work.
First we became acquainted with the historical documents, books, documentaries and web sites. We’re lucky to have the access to the state libraries located in Moscow that’s why we visited All-Russia State Library for Foreign Literature and the American Cultural Center there while working on the project.
Then the students developed the game plot and divided the whole work among all the members of our team. Everyone studied the facts and collected the data and was able to show the fields of his/her expertise.
The contest theme has attracted not only the students but their parents and relatives, too. The students’ families got so interested that they researched the topic and then discussed historical and political issues together with their kids. I think the whole process made the two generations’ views meet. Figuratively speaking, all the participants of our team heard the “tune” of Ross learning the wisdom of our ancestors.
The most interesting part was the plot development. What adventurous ideas were presented, what unusual characters offered, what elaborate schemes were created. The choice was not easy at all! But we tried our best to make the quest attractive, interactive and educational.
And finally we sacrificed our winter school break for the completion of the game without even thinking about it because “The FORTune of ROSS” has become a significant part of ourselves! Frankly speaking, it’s not the end of our journey it's just the begining.
You’ll see the students from “The FORTune of ROSS” team will become the future leaders and no doubt this project will help them in breaking the stereotypes about our great nations, appreciating our cultural heritage and deeper understanding of the historical events and their influence.
After two months of extensive research, collaboration, and on-line game development, we are delighted to give you a glimpse of our work. Watch our promo video below and take the breathtaking journey of our web quest.
Click the picture below to take part in the quest.
In my life (like in a life of any modern schoolchild), there have been a lot of projects connected with school subjects. But this one is something special. And it’s not only about working hard and searching for necessary information, sometimes gathering it bit by bit. Actually, the main thing is the result we’ve created: the real game, both exciting and informative. It looks as we’ve gone travelling to the past ourselves, roamed in the streets of Fort Ross, talked to Kashayas and Aleuts, learned the details of shipbuilding.
I have to explore many facts from the history of cooperation between America and Russia such as Alyaska, Artek, Chkalov’s flight, etc.
Thanks to this project we’ve got a real team where everyone has demonstrated himself in his own way and done his best. I’ve managed to put into practice my skills of the English language and find out a lot of new and interesting things about programming at the time of making the game.
During working on the project I understood how important it is to remember and appreciate our common past. Only in this case we will have our future! And I’m very glad to have taken part in this project!
Ilya Kolesnik (programme part consultant )
Most of all I liked to create the images of main characters: Ivan and Anastasia while working on the project . Due to characters’ names repeat our names (the real names of participants of the project) the process was particularly exciting and responsible. It was very funny to watch how the things were born on the paper and then came true on the screen of the computer game. The important fact is that our characters are different at first sight but they can find the decision from any current situation together. It proves again that friendship and support are the main values that we have got. In the history of FORT ROSS a lot of lives have been interlaced. Generations from generations have grown there keeping their ancestors’ traditions. It would be very interesting to see this real history with our own eyes (a windmill, a church, other buildings) and get acquainted with people who have been saving the legendary Russian fortress for us. This project has given me a chance to reveal for myself my friends, Ilya and Vanya and to know better Natalya Valeryevna, not only as a wonderful teacher but as a kind, understanding and a very responsible person. During preparation and collection of the materials we spent plenty of time with each other and worked side by side. We have come together to make a real team that is ready to fight to the end. Thanks to the project for this great opportunity!
Anastasia Yufrikova (graphic designer )
When our teacher told us about this competition, I couldn’t believe, that I was able to do it. I thought that it would be too hard to make the game. Later, when we started working on the project, I understood that this was a great opportunity to try my best and test my knowledge in history and English. We spent a lot of time translating the texts and various historical documents. There were so many that sometimes I was even confused in the dates. All in all, our team went through lots of difficulties, but we overcame them and hope that our game will help people know the history of the United States and Russia better.
Ivan Shepelev (history expert)