In today’s session we focused on finding out more about using games to develop learning. It has a lot of benefits as through using digital games to support learning it increases the children’s attention span and makes it more engaging. It gives the children an opportunity to play and have fun while still developing crucial skills from the curriculum. It helps with developing children’s team-working skills as well as their ability to concur problem solving (Higher Education Academy, 2017). A lot of children also already use gaming devices often making it a tool that they are already able to use-90% of 8-11 use it regularly. Gaming consoles are a part of a daily routine for many children (Ofcom, 2001).
‘Theorists Jean Piaget and Leonard Vygotsky have argued that play is a crucial component of cognitive development from birth and through adulthood’ (Higher Education Academy, 2017).
Games based learning is another source like movies, books and digital technology that when used correctly, has a great advantage for the children in their learning. Games can also be easily incorporated through-out the curriculum and most activities (Matthew Farber, 2016). According to Bray (2012) game based learning can be the most impactful when done properly and should be used as a new way to teach lessons instead of just being a reward within the classroom.
‘Although game-based learning has had a ‘difficult history’ with teachers who may have felt threatened by children becoming more expert in technology than they are, there is no denying that such platforms offer them a way to engage the pupils in a way they understand and can relate to’ (Stephen Reid, 2016)
A challenge that might arise is using a suitable game to target all the needs so that it isn’t a waste of time (Stephen Reid, 2016). Teaches also need to be aware of what they want to achieve with the games and what outcomes it will achieve (Beauchamp, 2012, p.9)
In groups we created a mind-map based on Mario Kart and what lessons you could do with the game to target several experiences and outcomes, this is what we came up with;
- Pupils can write own storyline, this will explore punctuation and grammar as well as developing their creative skills.
- Pupils can describe their Mario character.
- Experience and outcome:
I can use my notes and other types of writing to help me understand information and ideas, explore problems, make decisions, generate and develop ideas or create new text.I recognise the need to acknowledge my sources and can do this appropriately. LIT 2-25a
- Pupils can make price lists for tickets and merchandise for the Mario Kart event
- Decide on promotion deals, this would target money work
- Calculate if they made a profit of the event
- Experience and Outcome:
I can use the terms profit and loss in buying and selling activities and can make simple calculations for this. MNU 2-09c
- Pupils can design their character, kart, tickets and merchandise.
- Experiences and outcomes: I can create and present work that shows developing skill in using the visual elements and concepts. EXA 2-03a,
- Through observing and recording from my experiences across the curriculum, I can create images and objects which show my awareness and recognition of detail. EXA 2-04a
- Re-create the Mario Kart theme song and make their own version
- Make their own sound effects
- Experiences and Outcomes:
I can sing and play music from a range of styles and cultures, showing skill and using performance directions, and/or musical notation. EXA 2-16a
Through my own use of the game I found that there is so many ways you can incorporate games into learning, I believe it is a lot more fun and interesting that the usual way of teaching and could be a great tool to use in the classroom to aid learning even children with ASN.
Minecraft is also a very useful game for developing a variety of different skills it also allows children to creative. During the created our own building on the game with the help of pupils that came in to our class from school. I think the game is very interesting and has a lot of potential to be used in the classroom for beneficial effects within learning. I would like to try to use Minecraft when I am on placement for a lesson. ‘Minecraft is a worldwide phenomenon. Since it was first released back in 2011, it’s been taken to the hearts of thousands and thousands of gamers.’ (MagBook, 2014, p.3)
Beauchamp, G. (2012) ICT in the Primary Classroom: From Pedagogy top Practice. Pearson.
Higher Education Academy (2017) Gamification and Games-Based Learning [online] https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/knowledge-hub/gamification-and-games-based-learning [Accessed-6.3.18]
Matthew Farber (2016) Three Ways to use Game Based Learning. [online] https://www.edutopia.org/article/3-ways-use-game-based-learning-matthew-farber [Accessed-6.3.18]
Stephen Reid (2016) Teachers Experience Games-Based Learning at Minecraft Launch [online] http://futurescot.com/educators-encouraged-open-minds-possibilities-games-based-learning/ [Accessed- 6.3.18]
MagBook (2014)How to Do Everything in Minecraft.
Bray, O. (2012) Playful Learning: Computer Games in Education. [Online] https://www.slideshare.net/Microsofteduk/playful-learning-computer-games-in-education [Accessed-15.3.18]
Ofcom (2001) Children and Parents: Media Use and Attitudes. [online] https://www.slideshare.net/Microsofteduk/playful-learning-computer-games-in-education [Accessed- 15.3.18]