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What’s New in Game-based Learning – June 2023

The end of the school year brings a well-deserved break, but learning doesn’t stop when the school doors close for summer! Welcome back to another installment of What’s New in Game-based Learning, a blog series where we round up all the most notable and newsworthy articles on serious games, games for impact, VR and AR for learning, and more. Read on and discover why news outlets from around the world are shouting out their enthusiasm for game-based learning!

via Giphy

From a futuristic video game that teaches calculus to utilizing augmented reality in museums, this is a collection of news you don’t want to miss. To stay up-to-date on all things game-based learning, follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Can’t read this post now? Bookmark it now so you have some lively summer reading to look forward to later!

LIVE Lab Explores New Horizons In Game-Based Education (Texas A&M Today)

This article discusses TAMU’s LIVE Lab’s forward-looking approach to educational video game design. Led by André Thomas, friend of Filament and CEO of Triseum, the lab aims to create academically rigorous video games and interactive experiences. The success of the LIVE Lab’s original games, including the ARTé franchise that explores art history, showcases their ability to create fun and educational experiences. Another example of their work is their game Variant: Limits, which takes place in a sci-fi landscape and teaches calculus by having players solve math-based puzzles to progress through levels and save a planet.

One of the lab’s current endeavors is developing a virtual version of Texas A&M’s Disaster Day program, offering realistic disaster scenarios for aspiring health professionals. This virtual simulation provides an immersive experience and can be utilized by institutions lacking resources for large-scale live simulations. 

A Decade Into Experiments With Gamification, Edtech Rethinks How to Motivate Learners (EdSurge)

Since many researchers and institutions have already established the educational benefits of game-based learning, the next step is figuring out how to make the most out of interactive digital learning. Currently, many leaders in the edtech industry are reimagining the use of gamification to motivate learners! 

One example is CoCo Learn, developed by MIT’s Lifelong Kindergarten research group, which prioritizes collaboration and creativity over competition and rewards. CoCo Learn is a real-time platform that allows young people to collaborate and create projects together in a safe environment, emphasizing communication skills and problem-solving.

According to this article from EdSurge, other edtech companies are reassessing their gamification strategies, too. Quizizz has modified its approach to create a fairer and more motivating competition experience by considering students’ performance in various tasks and grouping them based on mastery levels. Boddle focuses on incorporating persistence and motivation into math learning games, while Shoelace Learning aims to strike a balance between engagement and effective content delivery in teaching reading comprehension.

While competition remains a significant aspect of many edtech strategies, CoCo Learn’s departure from traditional gamification elements reflects a shift toward fostering future-facing skills. The article concludes by highlighting the ongoing efforts to create a more balanced learning experience for all students.

How gaming is driving interactivity, inclusivity and motivation in education (Times of Malta)

If you’re a frequent reader of the Filament Games blog, then you already know that gaming is steadily gaining more recognition for its educational benefits, including promoting interactivity, inclusivity, and motivation among students. As reported by the Times of Malta, research demonstrates gaming’s practical advantages, such as improved performance by surgeons who play video games. The core appeal of gaming lies in its ability to offer choices, freedom, and diverse experiences, therefore appealing to players of all ages!

Within the article, Stephen Reid, the Game-Based Learning Lead at Microsoft, highlights the versatility of games, which allow players to make choices, be anyone, and go anywhere. He emphasized the need for wider integration of gaming in everyday life, dispelling the notion that it is limited to Gen-Zers, as the average age of gamers is 34, with players of all ages.

This article also explains how games allow educators to connect with their students through playful learning, and why that’s important. Our friend Tammie Schrader, an expert on games in education, is interviewed in this article and supports the idea that games can help educators connect with every child. Hear more about the power of play directly from Tammie in her TedTalk below!

How digital platforms are alleviating Math anxiety and driving STEM success (India Today)

Here’s how digital platforms and games can help alleviate math anxiety and drive success in STEM education! For context, math anxiety is a condition that hinders students’ performance and engagement in the subject and affects many learners. According to this article from India Today, nearly half of secondary school students experience moderate levels of anxiety, with girls displaying higher levels than boys.

To address this issue, the article emphasizes the importance of incorporating play, technology, and conceptual comprehension in mathematics education. By introducing game-based math learning, students can have a more enjoyable time learning, reducing negative feelings associated with math class. Additionally, game-based scenarios can help students understand mathematical concepts and create a foundation for more advanced topics later on.

Moreover, this article’s author notes that games encourage discovery and productive struggle, fostering a deeper understanding and boosting students’ confidence. Combining game-based learning with math education can provide learners with a sense of achievement and progress.

Bringing Augmented Reality to card games at Explora Children’s Museum of Rome (Museum Next)

via Museum Next

Recently, the Explora Children’s Museum of Rome incorporated augmented reality into a card game called Missione Me to enhance the museum’s exhibition on the human body. This article from Museum Next gives readers an inside look at this project, which is aimed to provide an engaging educational experience for young visitors all while supporting the teaching of human anatomy in classrooms. 

Missione Me allows users to access AR visualizations of different organs when they point the camera at specific cards depicting body parts. The app also features audio commentary to minimize distractions and screen dependency. 

The success of this project highlights the potential of AR experiences to be inclusive and collaborative, enhancing group learning and social interactions. Due to the amount of positive feedback on the game so far, the museum plans to expand the use of AR to other subjects, such as astronomy and chemistry. The article concludes by emphasizing that technology should serve as a tool rather than a solution in education. We couldn’t agree more!

That concludes June’s segment of What’s New in Game-based Learning! By leveraging technology, educators can provide personalized learning experiences, bridge gaps in resources, and cultivate skills essential for the 21st century. We live in an exciting time where the integration of gaming in education is opening up a path toward a more interactive, inclusive, and effective learning landscape.

What’s that? You’re interested in creating an educational game? Wow, we just so happen to be educational game developers! Contact us today for a free consultation. 

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