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Using Serious Games And Simulations In The Classroom

Via: Education Futures - Educators Got Game

Brock Dubbels, a Ph.D. candidate in Curriculum and Instruction at the University of Minnesota brings nearly two decades of experience in education and instructional design, exploring new technologies for assessment, delivering content, creating engagement with learners, and investigating ways people approach learning.

Brock has recently joined Education Futures as a guest blogger and you may find his latest great posts on 'games in the classroom'.

Brock Dubbels was interviewed in the National Education Association’s October 2007 issue of NEA Today on the use of games in the classroom under the article Educators Got Game.

Article Excerpts

OK, I’m convinced. How do I get started?

“Play games! Play lots of games. Find out what they’re like, and talk to other people about what games they’re using,” advises Brock Dubbels, who teaches language arts and literature at Richard Green Central School in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He says that after playing a few different titles, you’ll see how they can apply to your teaching goals.

Dubbels uses the literary elements of games—such as genre, tone, plot, setting, and characters—to increase student comprehension and critical evaluation skills. “All games have a story,” he says. “They’re built on traditional narrative elements and film theory, but have interactivity that students find engaging.”

He emphasizes, however, that games are merely tools that help teachers achieve pre-established curricular goals. A video game is “a killer app in the classroom,” but it’s a means, not an end, he says.

Plus, it’s just plain fun. “‘We’re going to play a game’ sounds a lot more appealing to a class than, ‘We’re going to summarize a story and analyze a plot diagram,’” says Dubbels.