“I want you guys to be stuck on a video game that is teaching you something other than just blowing up something” President Obama
Gamification is about increasing motivation and engagement. Once you have a kid’s attention, it is still up to the teacher or the parents to deliver a solid, meaningful lesson. Gamification is not a magic bullet, nor does every student need it, but the students who benefit the most from a gamified classroom just so happen to be the ones who most need motivation and engagement. There are some ideas about how to engage your kids through gamification.
- Improving an existing training program, by empowering proactivity.
- Promoting social interaction, by simulating the actual tasks they will perform in a safe virtual environment.
- Mimicking real life challenges with increasing levels of difficulty, by introducing different challenges with increasing levels of difficulty.
- Adding gamification elements to learning for those with various learning disabilities, in order to keep them motivated.
- Using game-based simulations, to improve the general performance of the group.
- Simulating reality in different/new environments, so the concepts become active and independent of the environment.
- Allowing students to collect badges by completing certain tasks, so the achievement is more tangible.
- Using game elements during the lesson’s explanations, to avoid bored minds.
- Enabling learning in a forgiving environment, which allows for risk-free mistakes.
- Tapping into intrinsic motivation. Create a context and narrative, and then select the most appropriate game elements to create an immersive experience to take a player on a journey.
The game mechanics found in a good gamified classroom raise a struggling student’s self-esteem and provide an extra layer of engagement that might not otherwise exist. Your best, brightest student may enjoy learning in a gamified class.