Monday, September 25, 2006

It's Game Time!

Science Teacher Stephanie sent an e-mail out today asking for "links of educational websites the students can peruse in the before school program." I don't have a huge database of educational games.

I know they're out there and growing in popularity, but that's about it. I remembered Marc Prensky's talk at BLC'06 and turned to the web.

More specifically, I turned to and started a tag search. Not two minutes later, I was breezing through a site called Social Impact Games. I'll admit, I stopped by a few to test them out. I'm got particularly hooked on "Wast of Space" by Hidden Agenda Games. They've got some spectacular science games. Nothing like blowing up aliens and getting a first-class refresher on the laws of motion at the same time.

I have yet to find any writing games, but I'm sure they're out there. This is not to mention the writing component that can be built in to explaining any of these games.

I remember doubting the validity of what Marc was saying when he spoke of the coming wave of relevant educational games. A child of "Oregon Trail" (I never made it without breaking an axel or losing an ox) my memory is of edcuational games that could never stack up to the system that was waiting for me at home. While these newer offerings are not yet up to par, their inclusion in a classroom environment would likely meet with excited students. This is taking the learning where they live.

Incidentally, this has become my mantra for the year, "Take the learning where they live." If they live online, we've got to go there. If they live for sports, we've got to go there. The way I see friends and family in specialized careers, I see my students more and more specialized in their lives. Though these specialties may not last, it's where they live.

More later.

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