Games & Learning

Antero Garcia Profile Picture
By Antero Garcia November 7, 2013 - 12:30pm Comments
I can’t play video games. I forget this simple fact every couple of years and a dark cloud swoops over Casa Garcia and I am enveloped in the feverish button mashing of some complex simulation for a hazy month or two. I have the kind of personality where, once I’ve begun playing a game, I am consumed.
Pollution Challenge! and Civic Learning with Video Games Blog Image
Liz Losh  Profile Picture
By Liz Losh August 12, 2013 - 5:55pm Comments
The recent international conference of researchers on human-computer interaction CHI 2013 in Paris presented the opportunity to survey current trends in the so-called “learning sciences” and to assess new methodologies for computer-assisted education (In 2010, DMLcentral covered the SIGGRAPH conference in Los Angeles here).
Creative Solutions for Tablets and the Common Core Blog Image
Howard Rheingold  Profile Picture
By Howard Rheingold August 5, 2013 - 10:05am Comments
When Sara Kaviar’s students study comparative religions, they don’t just read and view videos. They visit houses of worship, then recreate them in the Minecraft online sandbox and design games in their virtual world that test each others’ knowledge. For these students, the process of building and then navigating through models of physical churches, temples, and mosques gives them both a medium through which they can co-construct knowledge and a social environment that encourages collaborative learning.
Teaching and Learning with Minecraft, Part Two: Sara Kaviar Blog Image
Howard Rheingold  Profile Picture
By Howard Rheingold July 8, 2013 - 12:15pm Comments
Playing with blocks certainly predates constructionist theories of learning by playing with “tangible manipulatives,” but the culturally universal practice is probably as old as human social learning. What is new is the ability to use simulated blocks to teach comparative religion by enabling students to construct navigable models of famous houses of worship.
Teaching and Learning with Minecraft: Liam O’Donnell Blog Image
Jeff Brazil Profile Picture
By Jeff Brazil December 14, 2012 - 7:45am Comments
We commissioned filmmaker Nic Askew to make a series of short films that explores the underlying thinking of our six principles of connected learning: interests, peers, youth as producers, networks, shared purpose and academics.
Making + Playing + Understanding = Learning Blog Image
Liz Losh  Profile Picture
By Liz Losh November 8, 2012 - 8:10am Comments
Before the presidential election took place this week, many teachers used attention to the political drama unfolding across the nation as a way to draw students into classroom discussions and assignments.  Lesson plans that focus on elections have been around for decades to promote civic education and other learning goals.  However, the idea that video games are a way to promote civic engagement and an understanding of democratic systems is a newer idea, although role-playing activities and strategic games around mock elections have lon
Gaming the System Blog Image
Barry Joseph Profile Picture
By Barry Joseph June 7, 2012 - 10:08am Comments
Fast Company magazine recently featured this article, from design studio Frog’s Fabio Sergio, on how mobile devices will provide learning opportunities for people across age and income spectrums. It offers a nice overview, from a design perspective, on how mobile is opening new opportunities for learning. He details the following:
Howard Rheingold  Profile Picture
By Howard Rheingold April 27, 2012 - 1:05pm Comments
When I read Henry Jenkins’ description of the Pokemon-like card game he played with entering students at USC’s interdisciplinary Cinema School, I realized that the project Tracy Fullerton had described in September, 2011, had come to pass.
Reality: The Game Blog Image
Barry Joseph Profile Picture
By Barry Joseph April 5, 2012 - 3:10pm Comments
In a new report from the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University, "Youth and Digital Media: From Credibility to Information Quality," the authors set out to “map and explore what we know about the ways in which young users of age 18 and under search for information online, how they evaluate information, and how their related practices of content creation, levels of new literacies, general digital media usage, and social patterns affect these activities.” Their
Very Worthy Reads Blog Image
Howard Rheingold  Profile Picture
By Howard Rheingold February 7, 2012 - 7:05am Comments
I knew Bryan Alexander was intense when I first spotted him in the audience at a talk I gave in the late 1990s. Just look at him. Old Testament prophet? Civil War general? Straight out of Middle Earth or Hogwarts? It's not just the beard and the eyes. When you watch my video interview with Bryan (below), you can't help but notice he is always in motion. I've actually seen him pound the podium.
Bryan Alexander: Emerging Learning Technologies
Barry Joseph Profile Picture
By Barry Joseph December 29, 2011 - 9:45am Comments
Professor of urban planning, Amy Hillier, recently spoke at TEDxPhilly to talk about how data visualization technology can map a city’s emotions and memories.
Recommended Resources: Mobile Learning, Multitasking, Civic
Whitney Burke Profile Picture
By Whitney Burke December 23, 2011 - 5:35pm Comments
Mark Chen is a post-doctoral scholar at the University of Washington in the LIFE Center and Institute for Science and Mathematics Education (UWISME).
Digital Gaming as a Vehicle for Deep Meaning-Making, Situated Learning
Whitney Burke Profile Picture
By Whitney Burke December 2, 2011 - 6:40am Comments
Betsy DiSalvo is a Human Centered Computing PhD candidate at the Georgia Institute of Technology’s School of Interactive Computing looking at the ways in which culture impacts technology, and how we can leverage cultural practices into designing constructive learning interventions.
Barry Joseph Profile Picture
By Barry Joseph November 21, 2011 - 3:35pm Comments
Our Space: Being a Responsible Citizen of the Digital World is nearly 500 pages of workshops and lessons plans dedicated to teaching youth ethics for a digital age.  Produced through a unique collaboration of Harvard’s GoodPlay Project and Project New Media Literacies, it is all free online, as one giant download or as separate files.
Recommended Resources:  Blog Image
S. Craig Watkins Profile Picture
By S. Craig Watkins November 15, 2011 - 11:40am Comments
For more than nine weeks now I have been working with a high school in the Central Texas area, getting to know students, teachers, and administrators.  Along with a fantastic team of graduate students, we are spending time with an after school digital media club that offers students a range of opportunities to hang out, mess around and geek out.  I have also been working directly with two video game development classes on a project we thi
‘Connected Learning’ in Edge Communities Blog Image
Liz Losh  Profile Picture
By Liz Losh November 7, 2011 - 12:25pm Comments
Teaching historical empathy through gaming is an important area in digital media and learning, but collaborations between university professors and game designers aren’t always easy.  Nonetheless, UC San Diego Theater and Dance Professor Emily Roxworthy, who leads a National Endowment for the Humanities funded project about Japanese American  internment camps in the American South during World War II that also used resources from the San
Role-Playing Racial History through Computer Games Blog Image
Barry Joseph Profile Picture
By Barry Joseph October 27, 2011 - 1:15pm Comments
A new report on YOUmedia, a youth-centered digital learning initiative at the Chicago Public Library, explores what it means to reimagine learning, literacies and libraries. The report takes a hard look at the first year of the YOUmedia project.
Worthy Reads: Youth Media, Games & Learning, Pottermore, Web Freedom
Howard Rheingold  Profile Picture
By Howard Rheingold September 29, 2011 - 1:50pm Comments
Tracy Fullerton is an experimental game designer and associate professor in the Interactive Media Division of the USC School of Cinematic Arts where she directs the Game Innovation Lab. Her design research center has produced several influential independent games, including Cloud, flOw, Darfur is Dying, The Misadventures of P.B.
Re-imagining Media for Learning Blog Image
Barry Joseph Profile Picture
By Barry Joseph September 1, 2011 - 9:55am Comments
If you haven’t yet heard about Minecraft, then get ready. We can’t go to an education conference without hearing talk about it. The widely popular sandbox game has sold more than 3 million units, though it’s still in beta. Each player gets their own world to “mine” for resources and then “craft” those resources to build whatever they imagine.
Worthy Reads (Sept)
Barry Joseph Profile Picture
By Barry Joseph July 8, 2011 - 10:40am Comments
Do we need badges, specifically badges for learning? In recent years, the answer has been increasingly, if not exactly “yes” then something more like “we better find out before it’s too late.” The new interest around badges appears to have begun in response to a talk by Eva L. Baker, "The End(s) of Testing," her 2007 Presidential Address for the American Educational Research Association.
Highly Recommended Resources (July)