Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Gaming - too much fun to be educational?

Today was my GATE (gifted and talented) group for gaming and coding. We continued our work on Scratch, writing simple codes to make the sprite move in different ways. The children discussed their learning and their challenges - there was some great feedback about the learning and they decided that their biggest challenges were in following steps rather than trying to solve things without help! Not a bad thing to have as a problem, since these children are exceptional problem-solvers and now it seems they are great at creating their own problems too!

So we moved onto Sploder which is a gaming site where the students create their own simple games, (developing a series of obstacles and rewards) for someone else to play. This was a great session! They collaborated brilliantly, especially considering how tricky it can be to share a computer when there is so much fun to be had! Their challenge was to create and test a simple game which could be played successfully by someone else. We spent 30 minutes creating, 30 minutes testing and evaluating and then set about testing one another's games. Next week it is the challenge of creating a game at different levels and then evaluate and critique someone else's game and give them feedback for improvement/change. 

Thinking skills, collaboration, self-management, problem-solving, communication, evaluation, self-assessment, planning, and more! 

Really, gaming and coding in education? It's just TOO much fun to be educational...yet it is! 

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