How can we make school a joyful experience without sacrificing rigor? What's the best way to measure true learning? What's the purpose of school? The founders and teachers at the PlayMaker School, an all-game based school in Los Angeles, are asking those big, hairy questions that all teachers grapple with. At the PlayMaker School, they're trying to find their own answers through their constantly morphing, complex experiment. Here are their thoughts about these issues, in their own words.
Imagine a school where the students’ day revolves around playing games, all day long. Video games, live action role-playing games, board games, building games. At the PlayMaker School in Los Angeles, the school day takes kids from one game activity to the next, as they explore any number of different subjects and ideas, from the … Continue reading A School Day That’s All About Play →
Devlin argues that video games are the perfect tool for teaching math: "The problems we need mathematics for today come in a messy, real-world context, and part of making progress is to figure out just what you need from that context."
More teachers are using digital games in the classroom, and they're using them more frequently, according to a new teacher survey just released by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center. But more surprisingly, the study reveals that teachers are finding that one of the most impactful use of games is for motivating and rewarding students, specifically those who are low-performing.
Game making is one way to create a space where students are empowered to freely experiment with their own way of framing ideas and choosing perspectives. In this way, game making is tantamount to project-based learning.
Summer break presents the perfect opportunity for students to dig into games and build skills that'll reap huge rewards when they return in the fall. Game making can be one of the best ways to get students thinking creatively while cultivating useful technical literacies, and there's a ton of absorbing tools that students won't tire of over the long break. Here are three options to choose from depending on the type of technology students have at home.
Contrary to the popular image of the gamer as an awkward, socially inept loner, players are actually engaged with one another. Gamers play cooperatively. They play competitively. They share tips and tricks. They work together. The teach each other how to get better at the game.
Game-based learning forces students to apply knowledge in a contextualized way, it creates an interdisciplinary learning experience where subject-specific knowledge is used in a context that requires diverse applications. The borders between disciplines become fuzzy and ambiguous.