How can games unlock a rich world of learning? This is the big question at the heart of the growing games and learning movement that’s gaining momentum in education. The MindShift Guide to Digital Games and Learning [PDF] explains key ideas in game-based learning, pedagogy, implementation, and assessment. This guide makes sense of the available research and provides suggestions for practical use.
The MindShift Guide to Digital Games and Learning started as a series of blog posts written by Jordan Shapiro with support from the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop and the Games and Learning Publishing Council. We’ve brought together what we felt would be the most relevant highlights of Jordan’s reporting to create a dynamic, in-depth guide that answers many of the most pressing questions that educators, parents, and life-long learners have raised around using digital games for learning. While we had educators in mind when developing this guide, any lifelong learner can use it to develop a sense of how to navigate the games space in an informed and meaningful way.
Here’s a preview of the table of contents:
Introduction: Getting in the Game (Page 4)
An overview of games in the classroom from Katie Salen Tekinbaş, executive director of the Institute of Play.
What the Research Says About Gaming and Screen Time (Page 6)
Much of the research around digital games and screen time is evolving. Pediatricians, academics, educators, and researchers are working to find answers to how games and technology affect learners of all ages.
How to Start Using Digital Games for Learning (Page 14)
Since each learning environment is unique, here are some steps to assessing your resources before committing to a particular game or platform. See how some educators are using digital games in the classroom and how they find support.
How to Choose a Digital Learning Game (Page 19)
The sheer volume of games classified as educational can be overwhelming. This section gives you a starting point for game selection by providing an understanding of the types of games available in the marketplace and how to go about selecting them.
Overcoming Obstacles for Using Digital Games in the Classroom (Page 27)
As game use in the classroom continues to grow, barriers to deployment also need to be addressed. A recent survey of teachers outlines exactly which obstacles get in the way of successful implementation; solutions to those concerns are outlined in this section.
How Teachers Are Using Games in the Classroom (Page 30)
Examples of how teachers use games are embedded throughout the guide (including video examples), but this section takes an in-depth look at how some teachers are using games in the classroom and their real-life struggles and victories.