Highlights Foundation Retreat 2014

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    Announcing the 2nd Annual Dust or Magic eBook Retreat: Designing and Critiquing Narrative Driven Interactive Media for Children

    This year’s theme: Digital Children’s Literature 101.

    WHEN: April 27-29, 2014 Sunday through Tuesday (although you are welcome to come a day early for the Eric Carle dinner).

    WHAT IS IT: See the latest agenda.

    A special event bringing together leading designers of children’s interactive content, to “get smart” on children’s literature in the age of the touch screen.

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    We’ll critique best practice, as identified by the 2014 BolognaRagazzi Digital Prize Jurors, and see what went wrong with the many less-than-noteworthy products flooding the Apple and Android app stores. We’ll explore how to tap the potential of the tablet medium for:

    • Telling stories— to move beyond the page swipe and hot spot.
    • Helping emerging readers  — with scaffolding techniques.
    • Empowering children, using tried-and-true techniques.
    • Embed reinforcements — using interactive techniques to work with the narrative
    • Foster child authorship — including putting a child’s voice inside a story.
    • Learn the essentials of “appcraft

    WHEN: April 27-29, 2014 Sunday through Tuesday (you can come on the 26th for the Eric Carle dinner).

    A special event bringing together leading designers of children’s interactive content, to “get smart” on children’s literature in the age of the touch screen.

    We’ll critique best practice, as identified by the 2014 BolognaRagazzi Digital Prize Jurors, and see what went wrong with the many less-than-noteworthy products flooding the Apple and Android app stores. We’ll explore how to tap the potential of the tablet medium for:

    • Telling stories— to move beyond the page swipe and hot spot.
    • Helping emerging readers  — with scaffolding techniques.
    • Empowering children, using tried-and-true techniques.
    • Embed reinforcements — using interactive techniques to work with the narrative
    • Foster child authorship — including putting a child’s voice inside a story.
    • Learn the essentials of “appcraft
     We’ll also demo and discuss the state of children’s app design, and offer on the spot critiques of participant work, using Dust or Magic’s laser guided feedback. Speakers will include a small group of experts that represent three distinct views — Publishers, Researchers and Reviewers.  The event is independent, there are no sponsors or selling; all platforms are discussed from a scholarly rather than commercial point of view.

    Participants of the first ever Dust or Magic eBook Retreat

    Participants of last year’s Dust or Magic eBook Retreat

    WHO:  Attendees include children’s publishers, app designers, reviewers and researchers.
     
    WHERE: The Highlights Foundation*. Our meeting will take place at the epicenter of children’s literacy  — at the former home of the founders of Highlights for Children, in the wooded hills of Pennsylvania.  The campus consists of the Founders’ farmhouse, 21 cabins and a conference center known as The Barn at Boyds Mills, located 2½ hours from New York City and 45 minutes from the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport.Disclaimer: Other than renting the facility from Highlights Foundation, this event has no formal connection to Highlights-related apps or publications.Here’s a good article about the Highlights Foundation.  One of the cabins at the Highlights Foundation
    Meetings and meals take place in The Barn, which has several relaxed classroom-like areas, a Great Hall, an outdoor fireplace and a  kitchen. There is excellent password-free Wi-Fi and high definition displays. Charming cabins with a rustic feel have modern facilities and are writer-ready with desk, chair and stocked bookshelves. Farm-style meals are prepared by a top-notch chef who can accommodate dietary restrictions. Mealtimes are a time for lively discussion. Snacks are always available for late-night or early morning writing sessions. Participants may use available computers, thumb drives, projectors and displays for demos.There is limited cellular reception on the grounds. There are trails for hiking, outside seats for contemplation, a word garden and yoga most mornings in the reclaimed horse barn.

    REGISTRATION:
    is $1190 per seat ($890 at small publisher rate) and includes food and supplies. Group size is limited on a first-come, first-served basis. Please call Megan at 800-993-9499 to see if you qualify for the small publisher rate. Visit our online registration form.

    HOUSING:
    (double occupancy) is an additional $270 ($135 per night for two nights) and can be paid for up to one week prior to the retreat using our secure transaction portal. You can request a private room for an additional $100 (pending availability) and specify rooming preferences on the registration form or by calling 800-993-9499 (9 to 3 EST).

    To register by phone, please call 800-993-9499 (9 to 3 EST) and speak with Lisa or Megan.
    To register online, visit our registration form.

    CONTINUING EDUCATION UNITS:
    Two CEUs are being offered by the Erikson Institute’s TEC for $100 extra.

 

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  • 2018 Events

    Masterclass • Mar. 25, Bologna, Italy • Register
    AppCamp • Jun. 1-3, Asilomar, CA • Register
    Highlights Retreat • Boyds Mills, PA
    Institute • Nov. 4-6, Lambertville, NJ • Register

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  • Conference testimonials

     

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      Sanj KharbandaVP Digital Strategy, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Dust or Magic Hurricane Edition

      "Unique, inspiring, eye-opening. I would recommend anyone involved in the interactive space for kids to attend at least one. Thank you to everyone for sharing and being an inspiration."

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      Roby JohnCEO, TapToLearn, Dust or Magic Hurricane Edition

      "Thanks for a great first Dust or Magic. Made it totally worth flying all the way in from Mumbai."

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      Valerie ConnellVP Product & Market Strategy, The Waterford Institute, Dust or Magic 2010

      "Top Notch conference with A-list attendees - a pleasure to be included with the best of the best!"

    • katewilson200

      Kate WilsonFounder & Managing Director, Nosy Crow, Dust or Magic 2011

      "Relevant, invigorating and mind expanding: a great event. Warren's energetic, warm and informal style of communication and facilitation is key."

    • SONY DSC

      Krista MarksDust or Magic 2011

      "The best part is the inspiration that comes from being with a group of like minded, passionate, talented humans."

    • Jens Peter de Pedro

      Jens Peter de PedroPlay Designer, Toca Boca, Dust or Magic Hurricane Edition

      "If you are in Children's Interactive Media it's like coming to Church. You got to go for spiritual reasons. And it's only once a year!"

    • Scott_Traylor_200x200

      Scott TraylorPresident, 360KID, DM '13 Institute

      "Dust or Magic Fall is a must attend event to help increase chances of making successful children's new media products."

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      Charity GerbrandtCreative Lead, Disney Club Penguin, DM Institute '13

      "So great to share with like-minded people in a low pressure, no drama environment. Great size, space and leadership."

    • Kimberley SorensonThe Waterford Institute, Dust or Magic Highlights Foundation 2015

      "A wonderful opportunity to get down and dirty with a lot of different voices in a protected space. Inspiring + energizing on all conceivable levels -- many many thanks."

    • JCC

      Jayne ClarePresident, Teachers With Apps, Dust or Magic Highlights 2015

      "Leaving with a wealth of new knowledge, friends, ideas and inspiration!"

    • Erin - bio pic

      Erin ReillyCreative Director, Annenberg Innovation Lab at USC, Dust or Magic eBook Retreat 2013

      "This was just the retreat I needed to learn and to be inspired by others." 

    • Scott_Traylor_200x200

      Scott TraylorPresident, 360KID, DM 2002-2010

      "Come for toys, stay for friendship; leave with knowledge."

    • jlodahl

      Jesper LodahlCEO, SmartTots, Dust or Magic Hurricane Edition

      "Great crowd, great minds, great learning experience."

    • Hans WagnerOwner, Computer Explorers, Dust or Magic 2014

      "Just soaked in all of it. Great environment!"

    • Megan SmithSenior Designer, Interactive Media, Highlights for Children, Dust or Magic 2014

      "Warren and Daren really made everyone feel relevant and comfortable. Perfect balance of healthy criticism and ideas for growth."

    • aleen

      Aleen SteinCEO, Organa, Dust or Magic 2014

      "Even though I'm not making apps right now, exciting and relevant to my life."

    • Screen Shot 2015-09-23 at 4.03.01 PM

      Lorraine AkemannMoms With Apps

      While there is no shortage of conferences on kids and tech, Dust or Magic stands out in the crowd. This might be because attendees are required to leave their egos at home, or cast them into the ocean until the sessions are finished.