When I started teaching a little more than a year ago I made a lot of material for my classes so they could make small game productions with the free edition of Game Maker. The start of these projects would always include me guiding the pupils through the creation of the classic game Pong. In the next lesson they would learn how to make a Breakout styled game by building on top of the knowledge from the last game.
This would usually be a success and the pupils would later get an assignment to modify their Breakout game to use their own graphics, music and gameplay elements. Finally they would also need to produce marketing material for their games (press release, poster and video trailer). Once again this usually went really well and everybody liked to be creative and work with their own computer games.
But I have also faced some problems. When some students miss the vital first lessons in how to use Game Maker they actually lose much of the ability to play along with the others and keep up with them. With close to 30 pupils per class it is hard to put in the time needed to help those left behind when many other students also have a need for help.
My solution to this is a new website called Your Game Design. The goal of this site is to provide tutorials for beginners who want to learn how to make their own computer games. At the moment several videos and written/illustrated guides will show anyone how to get started and finish their first games. Making everything online-ready has taken all my spare time in the last two weeks but I believe it has been worth it. English is not my first language but I hope that skipping my local language will be a good decision in the long run.
More Game Maker tutorials will be added in the coming days and I also plan adding guides for several other game engines and useful tools.
I hope that some of my work can be used by other teachers, hobbyist game developers and maybe even people here on Gamasutra. We probably all know someone who wants to get started making games and the site is made for them.