Where I’ve Been Online (Apr. 26, 2014)

Approximate Reading Time: 2 minutes

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    Can games serve as a vehicle for education? What can, for example, the anti-pig fury of Angry Birds’avian avengers teach players about the laws of physics? What we know about learning and human development suggests that games and other forms of imaginative play can serve as a valuable educational tool and powerful complement to traditional stand-and-deliver instruction.
    Stephen Slota
    University of Connecticut

    Prominent learning theorists, including Lev Vygotsky, Jean Piaget, and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, have emphasized the importance of play in the development of abstract imaginative thinking and the realization of goals children cannot yet achieve in real life. For instance, a three-year-old unable to ride a horse can sit on a broken tree branch and imagine riding. Like other animals, we use games to mimic activities and roles for which we need to prepare, such as playing “house” to emulate adult social interactions or cooking with an Easy Bake Oven to get the gist of meal preparation.(a)”

    tags:education games play

  • “Issue:
    Felix Arnulf Kronenberg
    Rhodes College

    This article addresses criteria for choosing commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) games and their implementation in the classroom and other L2 learning environments. The proposal and discussion of a set of such criteria, which include the categories of motivation and flow, clearly defined and spaced goals, game skills and game mechanics, content, story and narrative, multimodality, agency, course integration and scaffolding, and financial, technical, and administrative considerations are the focus of this article. This discussion is followed by the analyses of three examples of COTS games (Buzz, Heavy Rain, and SingStar) which may be suitable in a L2 learning context.”

    tags:selection criteria commercial games learning

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