Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Gamification #NerdyChat

I'm a teacher. I'm also a gamer. Sadly, that does not mean I know a thing about gaming in education, or Gamification. It's something I have seen talked about on Twitter and I've seen blog posts on Zite, but it's something that I've been interested in, but have never really found the time to fully explore.

The people of AT&T Aspire contacted me recently and wanted to start conversations with teachers on using technology in education. After some talks, we came up with this hash tag #NerdyChat to spur conversation on utilizing technology to impact students. AT&T has recently formed a great relationship with GameDesk to bring gaming to students. Here is a video explaining their project.

This is the type of thing I needed to be successful at Math. I had the hardest time listening to lectures and taking notes when it came to Math. It just got scrambled in my head on the way to my hand. My parents bought me MathBlaster for the Mac to help with Math. It was a step in the right direction, but was not helpful when it came to high school Math. If I had something like what GameDesk has created, I might have been more engaged in my Math classes.

I am a proponent of technology in education and trying things out to see if they can make the difference in just one student passing. There will be plenty of people that will just say, "Teach them the way I learned. It was good enough for me and it will be good enough for them." There have been times I have thought that way and I all I met was resistance in my classroom. This new idea might be something that helps engage students in Math in a way that might not be possible with traditional teaching methods.

This is just one example of what gamification could do for students, I am interested in what others have to say on the subject. I am new to this arena and really need to hear from my PLN on the implications of the gamification of education. Are you for it? Against it? Join me while I host #NerdyChat Thursday June 7th at 7pm.

If you are interested in gamification, check out these links that were shared with me when I asked my PLN for help. These are awesome resources. 

@mbteach - http://www.diigo.com/list/mbteach/Gaming-in-Education

@dsamuelsperetz - http://gamification.org/ - A wiki for all things gamification

Infographic shared to me by @WandaMcClure

Gamification of Education


  1. Nick, please check out these two blog posts as a way to learn more about gaming and education:

    1) http://randomgamingmusings.blogspot.ca/2012/05/what-is-game-based-learning.html about the difference between GBL and gamification

    2) Either this one http://mondaymollymusings.blogspot.ca/2012/04/before-movement-becomes-bandwagon.html
    or this one
    about using games (and look at how that person modified the infographic you quoted).

    You have a lot of influence online and knowing about what's a fad vs what's genuine transformative practice will help not just you, but many of your followers.

  2. I try to see it from another angle: shifting kids from consumer of video games to producers/designers of video games in a meaningful and engaging way. I want my students to understand the rhetoric of game design, and then use that knowledge as they build their own video games.
    Check out:http://gaming4schools.yolasite.com/ where we documented out science-based video game design unit with our sixth graders this year.
    I worry a bit about how gamification (particularly at the corporate level) may still kids in the passive game-playing seat (or is that passive? maybe not). As more and more companies embed advertising into games, and then lure kids to play those games in order to get exposed to advertising, I cringe.
    I guess your question here is how can educators use that interest and expertise in gaming to the advantage of learning environments. I'm still mulling that one over, to be honest.


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