Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 30 seconds

Class idea: Edu Game Hack-a-thon

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 30 seconds

So I came across this really simple but interesting post about educational games (funny I got the tweet thru a work colleague who was actually retweeting my friend @dogtrax – the link he tweeted was from Educator Innovator but the one I’m linking here is the original), and how you know it’s a good educational game if the “learning outcomes” align well to the game “mechanics” (loosely understood as the verbs used in the game, and whether they match well with what we really want students to learn). I thought this would be a good way to introduce students to three useful things when designing educational games:
1. Learning outcomes
2. Getting game ideas by modifying existing games, bending them to our purpose (hacking, right?)
3. Multiple intelligences (still unsure how far I’ll go with this one, as it might be too much…)

I’d heard from a colleague who teaches the creativity course (but not in my section) about this idea of getting two lists of things and having students think up things to connect them. Like a list of brands (e.g. Apple, Google, etc) and a list of “things” (e.g. Watch, Glasses, etc.) and getting them to think up ways of how that brand might develop that thing (ta-da: Apple Watch, Google Glass – only the matches wouldn’t be things that actually match this way – I am just imagining that this is how Apple ever came up with the idea of a watch or google came up with glass…)

And this all sort of clicked with another idea that was in the back of my mind, plus the discussion between Janine and me (and between me and my students) about breaking rules in games.

So I’m having my students do a hack-a-thon!!!

So here’s the plan.

1. Introduce students to the idea of learning outcomes
Learning outcomes: knowledge, skills, attitude (Bloom’s Taxonomy) – find game-y way to introduce this concept? Or go straight? unsure…

End result of this is to have students develop some learning outcomes that they think are meaningful, that they would like someone to actually learn, or themselves to learn… (we’ll brainstorm also from courses they’ve taken and the #TvsZ game we played this weekend)

2. Have a random list of non-edu games
And randomly (either by students picking a number or by picking a piece of paper from my hand) assign students a particular “game” to “hack” in order to meet some of the learning outcomes they had come up with

List of game categories I can think of (and I may leave it up to them to pick the particular game, or give a couple of suggestions – restriction can breed more creativity or it can be stifling; not sure?):
Board game
Digital game (like facebook games, iPad apps, MMORPGs, Wii)
Twitter game
TV shows like Jeopardy
Card game
……. other ideas people can think of? Any ideas welcome

And so we have… an Edu Game Hack-a-thon. Or a Hack-a-game or whatever 🙂

Ideas? Suggestions? My class is Thursday inshallah

7 thoughts on “Class idea: Edu Game Hack-a-thon

  1. Hi Maha – lovely ideas!
    A friend of mine has made a Prezi on Garner’s intelligences: – and I have a ‘Intelligences Bingo’ handout if you would like it (where studetns find people in the room who have the different intelligences – whilst listening to Gangnam Style)…
    With designing Games – I usually start from the end point: What Revision Game would you design for this course? Once understood that way round – it can easily be flipped… Best, Sandra

  2. Maha Bali says:

    Thanks Sandra! May I have the intelligence bingo? Thanks!

    1. It’s in the email 🙂

      1. Maha Bali says:

        Got it, thanks!

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