A New Set Of Classroom Games
“Gamification” may be the greatest, yet fully unrealized, trend in education the world has ever seen.
It’s already swept the world of smartphones 10 times over. Candy Crush, Two Dots (my favorite), Farmville — the list is as longer than War and Peace.
But we haven’t really seen games and the “gamify” trend penetrate the classroom as deeply. The major game in education is, of course, testing. Scantron forms make for boring game boards and the rewards system of standardized testing dis-incentivizes trial and error. Playing it safe is the name of the standardized testing game.
Well, playing it safe, isn’t a strategy that most students will need in the coming decades. Fragmented industries punctuated with seemingly random career paths make the cliché step by step up the same ladder approach obsolete.
We need games in the classroom that teach us how to take risks. How to weigh various decision inputs and work together to achieve a common goal.
We need games that help us fail. That let us fail in a way that makes us more likely to succeed in life.