The NEA Foundation’s latest Challenge to Innovate (C2i), invites educators to develop new ways to use game-based learning and interactive technology to help students learn. The NEA Foundation is offering up to ten individual cash awards of $1,000 for educators who propose the most dynamic approaches to integrate gaming into classroom instruction. The challenge is open to anyone in public education. The idea were submitted on the U.S. Department of Education Open Innovation Portal. The ideas submitted can be tracked, graded there.
The top 10 innovators were announced and listed here: Meet 10 Innovative Educators Using Game-Based Learning. These ideas could be inspiring for game industry teams, educators or even parents.
- Journalism : A computer game is envisioned allowing students to travel to historic or imaginary crime scenes and act as reporters or investigators.
- Science : In an in-flight journey as a young bird following migration routes and discovering ecosystems, habitats, food chains, and life cycles along the way, students must accomplish missions that involve identifying, befriending, and helping the different species of animals and birds in the area.
- Curriculum APPlications : Students earn points by finding examples of the science learning content within popular interactive games, they create a mini-poster about the connection which can be displayed on one section of the classroom wall “leader board”.
- Challenge the World : It’s about opening up “World Math Day” – a three-day global competition – to more students in more subject areas, the competition would motivate and engage students in learning, while helping to build their understanding of other cultures around the world.
- The Candy Factory : It’s an app developed for the iOS platform (primarily targeting iPads). It’s a serious video game intended to prepare middle school students for algebra-readiness, it was developed by the Learning Transformation Research Group at Virginia Tech. A series of researches were conducted as piloting this game in classrooms.
- Authentic learning about civic : It’s about translating lessons from existing game-based civics learning tools, like “iCivics”, into real-world action or authentic assessment, through pairing these engage games and common core-aligned authentic assessment. Students will actually become the citizens the games teach. An authentic writing task aligned to the civic standard and common core writing standard is given to students, and the written products are actually sent to audience.
- STEM learning through Video games : It turns games into virtual laboratories. Instructors can use the full 3-dimensional visualization of physics to explain key points and make the connection to abstract schematic diagrams and pictures. DIY games can allow instructors to create exercises that have a real-world connection, students build virtual machines in their games and watch their dynamics evolve over time. This idea had been used to teach an entire course for freshmen non-science university students. Examples of how elementary physics concepts were taught using readily available commercial games have been described in a journal publication.
- Online “Quiz Shows” : The “BIG” idea is to have a website that allows students, as individuals or groups, to compete on a national level with other students in a weekly “Game Show” format similar to how the pub trivia game, “Buzztime” is currently played or simply on computers that have internet access. A variety of game show quiz formats could be used including, jeopardy, who wants to be a millionare, wheel of fortune… Questions can be easily obtained from standards based tests like the New York State Regents Exams in multiple subjects.
- “Dungeons & Discourse”: The game’s goal is to defeat the Aesiphron who have invaded the regions of Sophos, each of which represents a major branch of philosophy. To do this, students travel throughout Sophos, completing Quests, participating in the Marketplace of Ideas, pursuing membership in various Guilds, and building their Skills: consistency, rigor, research, rhetoric, precision, and skepticism.
- Learn to Earn : In this game students earn points in order to advance and receive rewards. Points can be earned by getting a good grade on a test, completing a computer math game, or participating at the classroom’s SMART Board.
Which idea is your favorite? Which project might be ready for you to use in classrooms? Subscribe to the idea or get connected with the inventor.