Top 12 Global Teacher Blogger Discussion: November

“What are the top games (online or video games) that can help students learn?”

In order to answer this month’s question, I had to go to the expert–my 10-year-old son. When I asked him which game has taught him the most, without hesitation, he answered Call of Duty. This is what he had to say:

The whole idea behind the game is that you are in a war, and you are fighting for your life. You need to get to the place where the enemy captain is and interrogate him, so you can go on to the next level. Each level gets harder and more confusing.

So the number one thing you need to learn how to do is listen. If you don’t listen carefully to the plan, you won’t know what’s going on. You need to pay attention to what the characters are saying and work as a team. The computer characters teach you battle strategies and how to dodge things in real life. Listening is key because the characters tell you what to do. Following their directions will make sure that you’re successful.

You also need to have a strategy to win the mission, or you will fail automatically. It takes a while to figure it out, but that’s part of the fun. It’s the past experiences that help you succeed, but it gets easier as you learn more about the game and use knowledge from other games. You can also go to YouTube to see how other people have beaten a level.

You need to use math to figure out how far you need to go and how quickly you need to get there before something explodes, or you will die. It’s also tricky because you have to calculate distance while enemies are shooting at you. You need to stay focused on your destination and keep battle strategies in your head the whole time.

The best part about it is it’s just a game. You don’t have to do everything perfectly, so you can try, try again, and eventually you will get everything right.

Another game he mentioned was Minecraft:

Minecraft is also great because in creative mode, you learn how to design buildings and get to look at other people’s creations. In survival mode, you have to battle creatures, so you need to build a fortress to survive the attacks. You learn battle strategies and defense techniques.

Failing is learning in these games and that is part of the fun. I wonder how we can bring that element to the classroom.

Click here to read posts from the other Top 12.

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