Game School – Day 3

Okay, I’m getting cranky for two reasons right now. One, I’m over orbital pundits talking about literacies for the 21st Century, especially stuff about illiterates. It’s not new (future shock) and its unsupported flag waving. Two, kids who play games are not wasting time, they are learning valuable processes in decoding – yet we insist that tomorrow THEY need x,y,z – like we have a clue.

Today’s Web2.0 is about as big a leap into the future today – as moving from Netscape 3, to Netscape Gold was. Time is compressed – and anyone who was around in the late naughties, pushing code, flash and ‘the internet’ to people who had never heard of it – have seen it all before. Time will reveal in the next five years that there are digital teachers and non digital teachers, and industry will appoint or not on that basis. Why – because it’s not new – just new to teachers. Ask anyone in advertising how it went down for them.

Derek Robinson: yet schools, teachers & adults insist on holding young learners’ hands sooooo much. Children are capable learners!

So, rant over – Day 3 of working with Mr9 in Atmosphir. “Let’s make a blog” say I. Silence, not even a response – he’s so immersed in his cunning puzzle creation, setting traps and tinkering. “How about you video it playing?” is the eventual reply. Now that’s probably because he watches video playback for games on YouTube like every other kid. So he knows that is the way things are done. We agree. This short clip represents about 30 mins of game-making. I’ve stopped offering my advice, he’s too busy working.

As a parent, what most hit me like a Acme anvil is that when it was ‘log off time’ – the usual battle was not over him playing but making. It took another 10 mins to talk him down off planet-ideas. It was perhaps very timely that as I uploaded the clip, Derek popped up in the metaverse – and once again reminded me how brain-missing it is to think that learning – next year, will be better because half a dozen more teachers finally figured out what a wiki is.

Game school expanded too. Mr5 was busy playing Atmosphir (stage 1) with Miss7.

As Mr9 is now the house-gun, he will help them (if they don’t act to n00bish in his view).

Of course Miss7 wants to make a game for Dogs … in a park – where the owner has got lost (now there’s a flip) – and the dog needs to find her, but will get soooo tired, so they need to eat bones … you get the point. Kids, with access to games – don’t need adults to learn all the time, because they are learning all the time and as DR says – very capable – something you won’t see if your kid brought home another word-search or blackline master today. We’re edupunking homework.

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5 thoughts on “Game School – Day 3

  1. Excellent post. I have been thinking quite a bit at how schools and curriculum fit the needs of many students (or maybe the adapt and go along with what is presented to them…) but also how they can constrain learners and make them think that they have failed or are not ‘goof ;learners’. Games and game design environments offers fertile environments for growth mindsets to flourish. I talked a wee bit about this in a recent press article in SCotland http://bit.ly/942QCB

    Game school is where it’s at…would love to visit and see how our work and yours work complements each other.

  2. Dean,

    Misses 4 & 7 are loving Civilization: Revolution, on iPad and PS3. The conversations that evolve when they/we play are just fantastic. History, geography, gameplay, strategy, big boobs and anatomically incorrect representations of famous historical female leaders are a few of the many topics. This has led to the ‘Horrible Histories’ books and tv show and depleting the library of that series for other enthusiasts of the past.

    Reading, (multi)literac(ies) and other kinds of enjoying/consuming text are irrevocably bound – up with living, having fun and exploring the roads and cul-de-sacs of our culture.

    This is what ‘school’ needs to know imho.

  3. I love the way the students are so busy learning thay don’t have time to stop and listen to a teacher. How much energy must be flowing around the room as these kids think, create, problem-solve, etc. Great work!

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