Category: Entertainment

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The power of play in a classroom context Learning through Leisure

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Student’s lives and learning ‘outside’ of school can be valued and included into curriculum. Games are a powerful and engaging teaching tool. Game design is inherently educational and teachers can utilise this unique feature within the classroom. Games are a tool through which teachers can model learning itself. Educational Philosophy

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Class with a broad range of physical, intellectual, learning, substance and social ‘issues’. Highly supportive environment using an integrated curriculum model (VCAL Foundation level). Pastoral focus on re-engagement and connectedness. Gender balance within class. A Specific Context

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Traditional written questions and discussion prompts Games to engage and use for discussion Other Features: Group work essential Access to internet & extranet resources Aides

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Games are a means of establishing valid links between ‘school’ skills and ‘outside’ skills. Games can engage students in authentic group learning situations. Knowledge of ‘cheats’ and their effect on game-play is a relevant skill. Initially, utilise the games students play. Valuing Existing Skills

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MYTH BUSTING: Females account for 54% of the gaming market. They also tend to ‘teach’ without the ‘let me show you’ approach of males.

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Games provide a context for authentic peer-education. Games encourage a positive risk taking ‘have-a-go’ environment. Scaffolded from the ‘known’ to the ‘unknown’ – explicitly link skills from commonly played games to new games. Concrete basis for critique and analysis. Learning New Skills

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ACTIVELY INTERACTIVE: Eye-Toy allows for gross-motor coordination and exercise in games. Prompts discussion about sport/game.

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Immediate feedback on efforts and achievements. Peer and teacher recognition for efforts. Practising skills leads to mastery and an acknowledgement that it is ‘fun to try’. Desire for self-improvement. Building Self Confidence

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Focus on the screen allows for less self-consciousness and ongoing peer encouragement develops active listening skills

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Active listening and non-verbal communication processes developed through game-play. Identification and utilisation of individual skills within a team. Responsibilities and expectations negotiated readily and rapidly. No ‘passengers’ in a game. Team Building Processes

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Team Eye-Toy: Enhances communication skills and actively builds strategic problem solving.

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Goals exist inherently in each game. Students choose ‘in character’ and this permits a degree of ‘distance’ allowing the more reserved students to express their views. All are conscious of the necessary compromises to achieve goals. Prioritising a range of elements. Decision Making Processes

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Character building permits ‘realistic’ role-play scenarios and prompts authentic discussion of game goals within ‘strategy’ based game-play – AND choices have consequences!

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Games provide a concrete basis for discussion of underlying social beliefs and values - ‘in-play’ and ‘post-play’. Games prompt an examination of team and individual ethics. Games permit students to make ‘real’ choices within a classroom. Students ‘experience’ their learning. Social Education and Values

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Personality traits: Why are these selected? What others would be useful? Why have you chosen these? What is the most important? Age, skin tone and gender: Do these effect game-play? Do/should these effect ‘real’ social interactions? Explain your choices? Attire: What does this express about your character? What impact can attire have on ‘real’ social interactions? SIM Bio: What has happened in their life to date? What are their dreams/aspirations? How does this effect their social interactions and expectations?

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Co-operative learning heightened through inter-team competitive game-play. No teacher encouragement necessary to prompt creative problem solving strategies and evaluative procedures. Strategy games and Eye-Toy are more effective than sports or arcade games. Espirit de corps continues in groups. Competition & Communication

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Oh, and it is also highly engaging and motivating to play competitive Wishi-Washi!

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Games provide an authentic environment for students to set their own learning goals – as individuals, cooperative groups or competitive groups. Games demand skill ‘mastery’ approaches to learning – it is competency based training at its best. Games integrate thinking skills. Flexible Learning

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