Connecting dots of digital learning

Play and Learn Weekly – Nov.18th, 2012

What’s happening in the convergance of play and learn?

News

Angry Birds Meets Higher Education

Earlier this week at the MIT Enterprise Forum, Digitaria’s SVP of Global Business Development Jim McArthur shared the stage with David Allison, CTO and co-founder of Nulu, and Ronald Uhlig, Dean of National University’s School of Business and Management. The forum was moderated by Duane Trombly of PointeBreak Solutions. The topic: Gamification.

Panelists discussed gamification’s various uses, from marketing tool to educational game changer. Uhlig made the point that only recently have we adopted educational systems that allow for failure. The model in years past was apprenticeship, a long-term teaching path that almost always produced a fully trained practitioner. Games share this quality, Uhlig noted.

Education needs gaming appeal – English

game-based learningNew Zealand’s school curriculum needs to take a lesson from video games to get kids more engaged in learning, according to Deputy Prime Minister Bill English.

At the opening of the seventh annual creative digital industries symposium Animfx in Wellington this morning, Mr English praised the ability of the gaming sector to get a hold on New Zealand’s younger generation.

Government, he said, would like to capture some of the gaming sector’s capacity to engage and stimulate kids and apply that in an educational context.

Workshop on “Technology Enhanced Learning with Game Based Learning” from EUCIS-LLL

This event is on 29 November 2012 11:00am

Organiser: ETDF

Mobile Games Bring Social Change to Developing Worlds (USAID)

Can games on mobile devices create impact in the developing world?

With support from USAID, Games for Change (G4C) set out to answer this question with a seemingly simple goal: to produce free, high-quality mobile games that reach and educate women and girls about critical social, economic, and health issues. The Half the Sky Movement is excited to announce the release of three mobile phone games in India and Kenya.

Simulations Spell Sizzling Science

It’s usually true that there’s nothing better than learning by doing, but sometimes simulation is better than the real thing. When it comes to life, physical, and earth science, simulation can compress time, connect tasks, and allow students to see multiple dimensions.

SimScientists is a five-year initiative to demonstrate the role simulations can play in middle school science learning and assessment. Dr. Edys Quellmalz oversees SimScientists for WestEd’s Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics (STEM) education program.

Mobile developer Intellijoy partners with YogiPlay to improve its educational apps (exclusive)

For developers designing these learning apps for kids of different ages, improving the games without knowing how children are playing them is difficult.

That’s why mobile developer Intellijoy is partnering with YogiPlay, a company that provides anonymous data of a child’s progress through a game via its software development kit. Insight from YogiPlay’s in-house educators also give feedback to the developer based on these results.

Dad Makes Game to Help Child

Angelina is distracted easily, won’t tolerate learning books. At age six, she could only say a few words. Marius, who lives in a town called Moss in Norway, taught her a few more words, stuck with it, made slow progress. So he decided to try something new. He wrote an iPad game for Angelina. Marius has no experience writing games and only a rudimentary grasp of programming. He used a tool called GameSalad and asked for some help from friends with relevant skills.

iPad app TinyTap raises $500,000

TinyTap, which has developed a free iPad-based application for children’s educational games, has raised the seed funding from Inimiti, a new $35 million micro venture capital fund.

Selene Makes Finals of International Competition

The Selene videogame created by the Center for Educational Technologies has been named a finalist in the International Science & Engineering Visualization Challenge.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) and the journal Sciencecreated the International Science & Engineering Visualization Challenge to celebrate the grand tradition of science visualization and to encourage its continued growth. The spirit of the competition is to communicate science, engineering, and technology for education and journalistic purposes.

game-based learning

Free iPad App Helps Train Future Neurosurgeons

The neurosurgeons of tomorrow can hone some of the necessary skills on the iPad, thanks to a new training app called VCath. Developed by Bangor University in the U.K, the free iPad app helps neurosurgeons-in-training master an appreciation of the ventricular system in the brain.

Serious Games International appoints five senior academics to its growing organization

Serious Games International, a development team that produces game-like applications such as training programs for corporate firms, has hired five new industry figures to aid in both academic research and the creation of serious games, Develop reports.

Bookmarks

Accessible Gaming

While gaming from a stereo-typical stance requires adaptation, it isn’t out of bounds for people with disabilities. World of AbilityCraft is a great blog documenting one persons use of Warcraft. It’s not purley an info-blog, but has documented one person’s journey with some very powerful posts. According to PC World “Steve Spohn is wheelchair-bound, on a ventilator and can barely move because of muscular dystrophy, but he’s still able to play video games.” His Xbox controller was invented during a Hardware Hackers Challenge, a contest to build a handicap-accessible game controller in under two hours. Industry research has currently shows around 20% of game-players (and buyers) has some form of disability. This is no small figure, given the hundreds of millions (if not billions) of people who buy and play computer and video games…. (more resources and stories in the post)

The Game of Motivation: Gamification and Augmented Reality in Education

The benefits of augmented reality are not just centered around novelty –the technology can increase the potential for conversational learning. Children have been observed to learn better in groups and augmented reality educational tools help to provide a more 3D focal point for students to gather around.

The applications of augmented reality will also be explored in detail at the conference. The pre-conference workshop Augmented Virtuality supports sharing of Corporate Experience will allow participants to explore new methods of knowledge transfer and the different spheres in which these techniques can be used, while the session Digital Tools and Aids for Teaching Maths and Science: Theory and Practice will focus on applications surrounding these two subjects.

Gaming as School Assessment?

Here’s an idea for a mobile app system used by teachers and students that could work in many schools to drive student engagement but also provide individual student performance analytics to the school.

Publications

The Rise of Li’ Ttledot: A study of citizenship education through game-based learning

Australasian Journal of Educational Technology
2012, 28(8), 1420-1432.

Kenneth Y. T. Lim
Nanyang Technological University
Matthew Y. C. Ong
Ministry of Education, Singapore

This paper reports data obtained from the use of a bespoke video game – The Rise of Li’ Ttledot – in promoting a sense of participatory citizenship among young learners. The game was developed through funding awarded by the Ministry of Education in Singapore, and was piloted in a primary school. Citizenship education illustrates well the truism that the learning of values is better caught than taught. The game was situated within a wider curricular program which included the use of question cards in a post-gameplay dialogic session between teacher and students. The structure and scaffolds thusly afforded helped the pupils in the primary school to abstract from their experiences within the game, to relevant school-based examples.

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