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Teachers Want Games In The Classrooms

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the better-than-newscurrents dept.

Education 21

eToyChest reports on a study indicating that over 50% of UK teachers would consider using educational games in the classroom. From the article: "The Poll findings also highlight some barriers to the use of games in schools, noting a lack of access to equipment capable of running the games as well as a lack of strong evidence of the educational value of games, an issue of focus for the Teaching with Games project. The appropriate choice and suitability of computer games to be used was also noted by respondents. Despite over one quarter playing computer games themselves, around two-thirds still felt, for example, that computer games may present stereotypical views of others and lead to anti-social behaviour."

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No-Brainer (4, Funny)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 8 years ago | (#14465084)

...over 50% of UK teachers would consider using educational games in the classroom.

Of course they would. Anything to keep the little monsters occupied!


Gulfs of similarity... (1)

hackwrench (573697) | more than 8 years ago | (#14466757)

How does, "would consider" turn into "want"?

Strange experience with adult games and learning (1)

vertinox (846076) | more than 8 years ago | (#14465216)

I used to play some H games (hentai) that was imported from japan and some off new grounds and discovered the trivia and ones that had a great amount of mind puzzles were actually educating me despite my lack of intention too and great desire to just see the booty.

It then occurred to me that because of my natural desire to see booty, learning boring subjects became a neccessity and I found them to be a trivial task to master after a while.

Although, I'm not suggesting we should put H games in school, there is something to that primal urge for immediate satisfaction...

Think how people in MMOGs feel when they level. If we have games that satisfy this natural urge for gratifcation then learning will be immediate and desired by the students.

However, I have yet to find an educational game that gives me the stimulus in order to learn things as good as the H games *coughs*

Re:Strange experience with adult games and learnin (1)

KermitJunior (674269) | more than 8 years ago | (#14468993)

"it then occurred to me that because of my natural desire to see booty, learning boring subjects became a neccessity and I found them to be a trivial task to master after a while."

Learning about women bores you, too?

Oh!! The Pretty Graphics! (3, Interesting)

therage96 (912259) | more than 8 years ago | (#14465220)

I swear I just read an article this week that stated that the latest studies have shown educational games not to be effective in learning due to students being distracted by the "pretty graphics" and sounds.

Oh well, I always thought Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego [] was fun.

Re:Oh!! The Pretty Graphics! (1)

Nataku564 (668188) | more than 8 years ago | (#14486803)

Dont forget Oregon trail. That thing rocked.

I've heard otherwise (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14465273)

I was interviewing a principal at my old primary school last year as part of research for a business project (releasing educational CD-ROMs to schools and parents). He doesn't like educational games because the game factor often overwhelms the educational factor (case in point: the Magic School Bus series from MS Home), though he did approve of incorporating things like crosswords, etc inside the programs. I suppose if it's actually relevant to the source material and doesn't distract from it, games could work inside a academic environment.

On the other hand, I still have memories of playing the likes of FixIt and the Fleet St Ghost on the Apple IIe.

Nostalgia: Educational video games (2, Interesting)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 8 years ago | (#14465293)

I had computer games in the classroom when I was in 1st grade in 1984. Perhaps the perception of games has changed? I rather enjoyed playing verb lift, and getting to shoot aliens every time I correctly answered some math problem. Maybe now the problem is that kids get to destroy demons and rescue princesses too young. Is the magic and motivational factor is gone by the time they are ready to learn?

Re:Nostalgia: Educational video games (2, Insightful)

steveo777 (183629) | more than 8 years ago | (#14465687)

Oregon Trail
Number Munchers
I needed nothing else... (stares off dreamely)

Re:Nostalgia: Educational video games (1)

cryogen01 (619406) | more than 8 years ago | (#14467797)

I used to work at a place called Ingenuity works ( [] )

I always hated those solve a problem to play for a little bit style games so when we made a math game ( The Abacus Project ) we tried to hide the math as much as possible so it played more like a game. (inspired heavily by prince of persia, out of this world and some of the other classics of yore - due to their heavy use of exploration and logic puzzle based gameplay)

Interestingly enough, this experiment was note entirely successfull, the teachers complain there isnt enough math in it now, ie too fun, not educational enough. On the other hand the second you say educational any mainstream gamer immediately cringes, you just cant win.

We had a bunch of other educational software too, most notably All the Right Type and the Crosscountry games. Its a weird market to sell into, making sure your game can run on a P166 with no graphics card in this day and age is almost nostalgic.

'Now, children... (2, Funny)

Channard (693317) | more than 8 years ago | (#14465374)

You start a game of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas with $5000, but spend two thirds of that money on being serviced by prostitutes. A pedestrian carries an average of $20 - so how many pedestrians do you have to kill and rob in order to get back up to $5000?'

Re:'Now, children... (1)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | more than 8 years ago | (#14465654)

GTA is a strikingly accurate simulator for learning real-life skills in the Big City

Re:'Now, children... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14466241)

Come on, we need better math problems than:
5000 * 2 / 3 = 20 * x

x = 166 and 2/3

so 167 people.

Re:'Now, children... (1)

InsideTheAsylum (836659) | more than 8 years ago | (#14467399)

Alarmingly enough, when I was graduating from highschool, there were still quite a number of kids who could not solve something as simple as this.

Re:'Now, children... (1)

Nataku564 (668188) | more than 8 years ago | (#14486814)

I'm in college and I still find plenty of people like that.

GLS center at U. Wisc. (1)

C. Mattix (32747) | more than 8 years ago | (#14465682)

I would invite people to check out the Games Learning and Society [] Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. There you can see cutting edge research in the field of using games in Education.

This post is right on... (2, Interesting)

DeionXxX (261398) | more than 8 years ago | (#14466026)

My wife just because a high school math teacher a couple months ago, and she's always saying how she'd like some multiplayer computer or xbox/ps2/gc games for review days. She's looking for math related (Algebra / Geometry) games that the whole classroom can play together either on individual computers, or using the projector + a game console. She's bought some games from online that claim to have some of these features, but they're all really poorly done. She played the new trivial pursuit on the PS2 recently and liked how that was layed out, but it's not related to her topic.

If anyone knows or uses anything like what she's describing, please post a reply so we can check it out.

Re:This post is right on... (1)

Tuna (14770) | more than 8 years ago | (#14467834)

As someone who ran a K-5 computer lab in the late 90s, I know I found that the quality of software for education varied greatly. A lot of software was good only for entertainment value. Just because the publisher says it's an "educational" game, that doesn't automatically qualify it as usable in a classroom. We spent too much money on software that turned out to be unsuitable for our academic goals.

Effective use of computers in the classroom requires writing well thought out lesson plans. Using the computer as a reward is fine, but integrate it smartly into the curriculum, as a supplemental tool to learning, not in place of other methods.

There's a lot more to learning than throwing random hardware and software in the classroom.

Of course they do (2, Funny)

duffbeer703 (177751) | more than 8 years ago | (#14466847)

I'd like a machine to do my job, and continue to get paid too!

Books first (1)

seanellis (302682) | more than 8 years ago | (#14477699)

This may seem like an odd thing for a Slashdot reader to say, but I have a sneaking suspicion that we should get the computers out of the classrooms until, say, age 11.

There's no point having a computer if the kids can't read, write, add up, or concentrate on a task. The £1000 it would cost to kit out a decent computer and train the teacher to use it properly would buy much more effective basic educational tools made of paper and ink.

Or buy paper and ink and let the kids make their own educational tools!
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