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Playing Games for Learning?
Thought video games were just for passing time in your living room? Think again.
How many of you are actually gamers or have a gamer in your house? It's almost 70%.
Let's explore how we can use an already popular past time and turn it into an important activity in the classroom?
Learning is about building new sets of knowledge, skills and attitudes. Learning doesn't happen unless the learner is feeling a sense of accomplishment. Accomplishment turns into fun. "Fun is just another word for Learning" Raph Koster
Volkswagen explored this theory in their Fun Theory experiments.
- Visit their website and watch some videos of the finalists in their contest to use fun to teach/motivate people to do things.
- Watch her TED Talks presentation, Gaming Can Make a Better World to learn about her new perspective on this topic.
Gamifying education seems like too much fun for the classroom. How can games support learning? Interestingly, there are a number of aspects in gaming that we see in the learning process as well. Gamifying Student Engagement by social studies teacher, Matthew Farber, describes how Leveling Up, Modding, and working with the in-game economy are also important parts of an effective learning process.
MineCraft in Education:
MineCraft is more than an online building blocks system for kids. It involves collaborating and connecting workers/learners in achieving a goal. There is no predetermined answer, only agreed upon outcomes.
Using MineCraft as an Education Tool This 5 minute video shares how middle schools students can use MineCraft for developing digital citizenship skills.
Edutopia - Game-Based Learning Series This site directs you to 5 pages describing how gaming (including MineCraft) can be used.
Your Choice Assignment*:
AFTER you have reviewed ALL of the resources above, I am going to ask you to complete a serious assignment . . . Play Kingdom Rush for 60 minutes.
This is NOT about playing a game. It is about learning how gaming can relate to learning and then testing it out on your own.
Kingdom Rush is available for your phone or your computer.
- iPhone - Go to the App Store and search for "Kingdom Rush Free"
- Android - Google "kingdom rush free android"
- Chrome - Select More Tools>Extensions>Get More Extensions>Search for Kingdom Rush.
- Web - Google "kingdom rush free" There are some sites where you can play it for free but you have to look at some advertising.
- How does it relate to learning?
- How does this change your ideas about gaming.
- Think of the thought processes you go through to problem solve throughout the game.
--BLOG about your experience gaming and the insights you had about the learning process.
* It is your choice if you want to do this assignment. You won't earn any more points for it but think of how cool it would be to play a video game for homework. =-)