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Creative Teaching Tools: Video Games

Video games can be powerful education tools—particularly when students build their own. Find out how your students can design an original video game about civics, mythology, scientific reasoning, math, or history (and why they should!).
Administrator: sarah_keating Created: 07/19/2011 Last Activity: 11/10/2011

Announcement

Share your experiences, resources, and new ideas about using or designing video games as a teaching tool. If you’re new to this concept, see below for more information and research, then chime in and start asking questions.
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    Tween Girls: The Changing Face of Gaming
    sarah_keating
    "A new report by tween gaming platform GirlsgoGames.com's 7.6 million U.S. site visitors found nearly 50 percent of girls between the ages of 8 and 12 are turning to the Internet for entertainment and social gaming." LINK: http://www.mobiledia.com/news/...
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    David Dockterman: Games help kids learn through failure
    sarah_keating
    Failure is a big part of mastering video games, and fundamental when it comes to learning, too. When we fail, we adjust, try again, and hopefully succeed (whether it be in capturing the castle or mastering a math problem). Dr. David Dockterman, Harvard's educational game development expert, reflects on what we learn when we lose. LINK: http://oomscholasticblog.com/2...
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    Use Games to Excel at Life and Work! (video)
    sarah_keating
    Video: http://vimeo.com/30566074 -- "Real life isn't always satisfying, but games almost always are. So how can we take the principles that make Angry Birds so addictive and apply them to work? Games researcher and author Aaron Dignan schools us at the 99% Conference."
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    Video Game Helps Children with Cancer!
    sarah_keating
    In an exciting collaboration between the University of Utah’s Entertainment Arts and Engineering (EAE) program,, a team of professors and graduate students have created a game that is expected to increase patients’ physical strength and give them a sense of empowerment to help their mental state while fighting their disease. On Friday, Sept. 23, the game was unveiled for use at Primary Children’s Medical Center. Here's the link to the article! http://unews.utah.edu/news_rel...
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    Math Apps on Smartphones
    sarah_keating
    Have you used any apps to help your students? What are your favorite educational computer games? This article reviews some math-specific apps for your tablet or smartphone: http://tinyurl.com/3juul5b
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    "Flipped" Instruction
    sarah_keating
    This article about "flipped" instruction (using technology to have students watch lectures at home, and then discussing questions in class) opens an interesting question. Could integrating game design into this style help eliminate "lecture download" from this model and make it fully interactive? LINK: http://usat.ly/ooRQUG
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    Game Design Teacher Workshops!
    sarah_keating
    Did you participate in the Level Up! Teacher Workshops? If so, we would love it if you'd share the lesson plans you developed with you everyone in this group!
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    Re: Game Design Teacher Workshops!
    sarah_keating
    These "Game Changer" workshops are FREE to teens who want to learn how to make video games - go to http://www.artandwriting.org/news to check out the workshop nearest to your school!
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    Online gamers crack AIDS enzyme puzzle
    sarah_keating
    "The [discovery was] published on Sunday in the journal Nature Structural & Molecular Biology, where -- exceptionally in scientific publishing -- both gamers and researchers are honoured as co-authors." LINK: http://tinyurl.com/65z5zgn
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    Re: Online gamers crack AIDS enzyme puzzle
    sarah_keating
    That's great! What do you teach? There are quite a few video game design contests that your students could compete in as well, if they're interested - the National STEM Videogame Challenge and the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards are two great ones!
  • Profile
    Re: Online gamers crack AIDS enzyme puzzle
    jconescu
    Are you the only person in this group? This is my first time here. I love the idea of using gaming/theory as a way to develop "21st century" thinkers - I need to take small steps with my class (4th grade). I introduced them to GamestarMechanic last year and they loved it.
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    Re: Online gamers crack AIDS enzyme puzzle
    sarah_keating
    An amazing story that focuses on the skills that video game design helps to build! Any thoughts?
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    Portal 2 - Teachers are using it in the classroom!
    sarah_keating
    "Valve always keeps abreast of where its games are being played, and how the associated editing tools are being used. Recently it has been hearing how schools and education establishments have been using Portal as a learning tool. The game is being incorporated into teaching such things as physics and critical thinking, as well as spacial awareness, math, logic, probability, problem solving, and how to create using a computer. It may seem obvious, but making such skill learning cool and fun opens kid’s minds to actually taking it on board and understanding the different concepts more easily." Check out the link to the entire story at (and how to get a copy of Portal FREE!) at: http://www.geek.com/articles/g...
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    Re: Portal 2 - Teachers are using it in the classroom!
    sarah_keating
    If you have any questions - please ask me. I've used it myself in both cooperative and single player modes.
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    Re: Portal 2 - Teachers are using it in the classroom!
    sarah_keating
    If you've never heard of this ground-breaking logic/physics based game, check it out at: http://www.thinkwithportals.co...
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    Video game building tools for you!
    sarah_keating
    Never designed a video game before? Have no fear! There are many easy-to-use tools that guide you and your students through your game project. Check out www.gamestarmechanic.com or www.activategames.org for walk-throughs and tips. Please share your own tools here.
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    Re: Video game building tools for you!
    sarah_keating
    Question sent to me via email: What's the best way for a cautious teacher to dip a toe into these waters? Share your thoughts!
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    Research about video games as educational tools
    sarah_keating
    Want to know about the research behind using video games as teaching tools? Click on these links for more information and share some of your own! • AMD Changing the Game Foundation: http://www.amd.com/us/aboutamd... • Gamestar Mechanic: https://sites.google.com/a/eli... • Institute of Play: http://www.instituteofplay.org... • Level Up!: http://www.scholastic.com/levelup
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    Scholastic Art & Writing Awards: Video Game Category
    sarah_keating
    Did you know that your students can enter their original video games in the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards? It’s open to students in grades 7–12 and the entry deadline in January 8, 2012. Go to www.artandwriting.org to learn more. Have questions - ask the Art & Writing Awards experts here!
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    Re: Scholastic Art & Writing Awards: Video Game Category
    sarah_keating
    Not sure how to build a game and enter the Art and Writing Awards? Here's an easy to use tool (and it's free!): http://gamestarmechanic.com/ch...
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    Lesson Plans and Other Great Ideas
    sarah_keating
    Do you have a great idea? Please share it with all of us!
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    Re: Lesson Plans and Other Great Ideas
    sarah_keating
    Good question today about integrating video games into Language Arts lessons - Start on paper by outlining whatever your class is reading. Then challenge students to turn it (or an aspect of it) into a game - finally help them storyboard how the game would actually look and work. (GamestarMechanic.com is a great tool to actually build them, too!)
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    Re: Lesson Plans and Other Great Ideas
    sarah_keating
    The Level Up! website has been updated (www.scholastic.com/createvideo...! It includes a variety of lessons for ELA, math, science, and computer science that use video game design to teach things like storytelling, habitats, cause/effect - fun!
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    Need help?
    sarah_keating
    We can help! You have questions and we have answers from experienced educators. Ask away!
  1. Portal (video game) available free to classrooms (LAST DAY)
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    Type:
    Practice 
    Grade:
    6-8
    Subjects:
    Math, Science, Technology, Interdisciplinary
    Avg. Rating
     
    Summary:
    http://store.steampowered.com/...
    Created by:
    sarah_keating
    Views:
    982
  2. Video Games Category in Scholastic Art & Writing Awards
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    Type:
    Link/URL 
    Grade:
    7-12
    Subjects:
    Avg. Rating
     
    Summary:
    Students can submit video game projects to the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. For more info: http://www.artandwriting.org/A...
    Created by:
    jkollmer
    Views:
    715
  3. AMD's Changing the Game (Education initiative for teens: science, tech, math, engineering)
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    Type:
    Link/URL 
    Grade:
    6-12
    Subjects:
    Math, Science, Technology
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    Summary:
    Initiative enables teens to learn critical STEM skills and become more globally conscious citizens through digital video game design.
    Created by:
    George_Martin
    Views:
    1102
  4. Ludo Dojo (Game design resource center)
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    Type:
    Link/URL 
    Grade:
    6-12
    Subjects:
    Science, Technology
    Avg. Rating
     
    Summary:
    Publisher of articles, interviews, and more from people within the industry and from the makers of games and game-making tools: http://ludodojo.com/
    Created by:
    George_Martin
    Views:
    1129
  5. Activate! Official Site (Game design platform)
    View lesson detail
    Type:
    Link/URL 
    Grade:
    9-12
    Subjects:
    Science, Technology
    Avg. Rating
     
    Summary:
    Game design platform to help teens take action on important issues like energy conservation, solar power, and pollution: http://www.activategames.org/
    Created by:
    George_Martin
    Views:
    928
    Assets:
  1. shaughton@norman.k12.ok.us
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