Class Activities

Expanding on Tutorials


Students form teams of two to work on making a novel modification to the roll-a-ball tutorial in order to test their understanding of the techniques covered in the tutorial. On this page, we describe the purpose and logistics of running this activity.

Students working in Unity

Students creatively change parts of the Unity tutorial to make it more interesting. (Image by H. Sharon Lin, MIT OpenCourseWare.)


We believe it is important for students to learn that creatively, especially in highly technical fields, often stems from extending and expanding on the work of someone else. Many students will believe that what they create is not creative if it is not completely novel, it is important to encourage students to set this philosophy aside for this class, since we are learning a new technology and will learn together by putting our own unique twist on the roll-a-ball tutorial. For instance, making the ball into a dodecahedron, adding the ability to jump, or having the rewards move rather than staying stationary.


After hearing about collaboration and having to learn the github workflow, students are often a bit introverted and need some encouragement to become social again and to find partner for this activity. We employ improv activities for this when needed.

Once students pair up, they are usually very self-managing in deciding on a modification and executing it together. It can be helpful to walk around and jump into each team to ask them about their modification and model collaborative brainstorming and troubleshooting.


Expanding on Tutorials: Kinect Demo

Mark Vrablic demonstrates how the Unity game engine connects to the Microsoft Kinect. The guided tutorial that students have completed called “roll-a-ball” is a game normally driven by arrow keys on a standard keyboard.

Expanding on Tutorials

Kyle Keane talks about the logistics and purpose of expanding on tutorials, and how this is related to creating, inventing, and learning.


Expanding on Tutorials: Humans Matter and Class Details

Kyle Keane provides a high-level introduction to the structure of the class, along with some expectation setting about engagement.

Course Info

As Taught In
January IAP 2017
Learning Resource Types
Demonstration Videos
Tutorial Videos
Projects with Examples
Lecture Videos
Instructor Insights