You Might Be a Geeky Teacher if You Have Used Gaming in Your Classroom

I've had several requests and experiences around gaming in education this week. 1.  The first was reviewing 50+ video submissions from students applying to be a PBS Super School News Anchor or Reporter.  One student submitted a video story about Mine Craft.  I have to admit that I am surprised at how many kids play and work in this 2 dimensional world for hours at a time and beg to code and build here when they have free time.  Check out this news story! 

2. The second occurred as I was considering that all I needed to know about the future of education may be learned from science fiction! We are starting a One Book Four Grades program at my school around Ender's Game which will culminate in attending the movie in November with a compare and contrast follow up!  Consider this section of Ender's Game (published in 1985) and the vision of tablet computing:
Personal Tablet Computing – Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card (1985) 
"Ender doodled on his desk, drawing contour maps of mountainous islands and then telling his desk to display them in three dimensions from every angle...
The bell rang. Everyone signed off their desks or hurriedly typed in reminders to themselves. Some were dumping lessons or data into their computers at home. A few gathered at the printers... Ender spread his hands over the keyboard near the edge of the desk and wondered what it would feel like to have hands as large as a grown-up's... Of course, they had bigger keyboards - but how could their thick fingers draw a fine line, the way Ender could..."
Game-Based Learning – Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card (1985)
Consider the Battle School from Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game. Through rigorous game-based simulations, students in Card’s world learned standard curricula as well as military strategy.  Schools around the world are starting to pay attention to video games and how they can be effective tools for teaching. 

3.  Gamification came up several times today, once with a student who is applying for a specialized high school program and wants help submitting an application that includes information about gaming in education and then some of my own research and attendance on a gaming webinar.  What questions come to your mind as you watch these slides?  Can we use gaming to engage our students in the classroom?   

WoWinSchool: How to Use WoW and MMORPGs to Engage Students - GSummit 2013 from Lucas Gillispie

Listen to this TED talk about the short history of gamification beginning with Where in the World is Carmen San Diego (1987 - can you believe it?)    

I am interested now in joining this 3-D classroom and training for teachers where I can even earn badges! I am considering the possibilities of this for my classroom.  
 Here is more information on their site! 3D Game Lab 

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