Integrating Gaming Experience Into Your Elementary Classroom

The Benefit Of Gamification In Learning
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Summary: Using games in classrooms is slowly becoming a standard tool to help teachers enhance learning among their students. It can help students learn social skills and critical thinking and motivate them to learn new things.

The Benefit Of Gamification In Learning

Playing games requires you to learn communication, follow instructions, and complete tasks on time. Over time, many games help you develop problem-solving skills, pattern recognition, strategic planning, and leadership qualities that can help you excel in any given career.

How's Gaming Affecting Future Careers?

Gaming in school can also turn you into a risk-taker and teach you to think out of the box. All games also require everyone to have a basic understanding of IT, which is essential in almost all currently available jobs. Kids can also turn gaming into their career, working with developers in the future or becoming professional gamers.

The Benefit Of Bringing Gamification Learning Into The Classroom

Teachers and schools have been increasingly trying to introduce gamification into their classrooms because the results have been so encouraging. Gamification learning has taught students how to follow instructions and promotes a more collaborative and teamwork-oriented approach. Many educators who have used gaming have even described it as a disguise to help children learn and have fun. It has also given teachers the power to make their content suit the specific needs of the students. Using gamification in classrooms has also taught students how to communicate with each other and brainstorm ideas on how to solve problems. Overall, it has created an engaging learning experience for students where they are improving their social skills and emotional learning.

Over time, students also try different methods to do the same thing, which has motivated them to think out of the box and take risks. A few games used in classrooms have also resulted in students improving their academic scores and developing a better attitude toward studying. Gaming needs to be used correctly, and the kind of game introduced should directly resonate with the type of learning you want to instill in your students. It has also been observed that it helps students who have ADHD in improving their knowledge and skills.

How To Choose The Right Game For Your Classroom?

Many games have been introduced to classrooms, based on the individual approaches of teachers and different requirements of students. In some research, the students who had the game improved their achievements by 12–25% over the levels attained by those who didn't.

Different teachers employ gamification or game-based learning differently. To teach kids how to write more descriptively, Joe Dillon developed a poem-writing game using Minecraft: Education Edition that has students navigating a maze and visiting several rooms. This activity, modeled by Georgia Heard's Six-Room-Poem, directs children through specific writing tasks, including describing an object by emphasizing its surroundings. Sixth-grade students can use Google Maps Treks, which offer a 360-degree view of ancient structures, to embark on a quest inside the Great Pyramid and solve a mystery as they travel. This game was created by Kendra Cameron-Jarvis, an instructional technologist for Buncombe County Schools in western North Carolina. According to her, the game enhances what kids learn about ancient Egypt in class.

Teachers can structure the complexity levels of a game matched to the current aptitude of the student to increase the possibility that all kids will participate. Teachers are advised to employ a variety of low-stakes leaderboards—scoreboards that display participants' names and scores—to highlight frequently disregarded activities or skills in a way that acknowledges contributions from kids who generally perform poorly on conventional assignments. For instance, users embark on mini-missions to find and save endangered animal species in the online game Alba: A Wildlife Adventure.

Choose a game based on what sort of learning you want for your students. There are many online reviews of different games and what they bring to the table. You can go through all of them and decide which one suits your students or requirements the most. Education Online, Teach Hub, and Edutopia are a few sites you can visit for some reviews and understanding. You can also follow researchers like Antero Garcia, an assistant professor at the Stanford Graduate School of Education, who studies the impact of technology and gaming on youth literacy and civic identities.

The Takeaway

This innovative approach is working all across the globe. Many teachers are trying to customize ways to use gamification and game-based learning to aid kids in developing better learning skills which will help them in their academic and professional careers, while also improving their attitude and adding some fun to the learning process.