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Re-imagining the educational experience through games

Minecraft

By Aislinn Malszecki, Digital Media Specialist, MindShare Learning

“Play is the only way the highest intelligence of humankind can unfold.”
- Joseph Chilton Pearce

Play is at the heart of games. To wonder, explore, and build through play, this is key to learning and to creating new ideas.  Games get us to flex our innately curious minds. Gameplay can inspire new ways of thinking that looks nothing like traditional learning.

I think one of the best games that truly captures game-based learning is Minecraft. This hugely popular game focuses on building in a 3D world. Minecraft is the 21st century Lego, a world where you build digitally with blocks anything you can imagine.

 

Game-based learning presents video game dynamics, the fun from board games like Monopoly, and are now also inspired by games on the Nintendo Wii or Playstation.  Learning with digital games helps integrate real world experiences into traditional subjects such as math, science or history.  Through game play students learn deep knowledge and concepts through fun challenges. Games can even prepare the groundwork for developing wisdom. The essence of learning is how to make the best results out any situation, and practise through games can do that for us. The best games are a thought-provoking and sensitive simulation of real life experiences – mini-models of the world – and in this games truly help us learn the patterns of cause and effect or trial and error.

 

Games are exciting, frustrating, and even relaxing. Its interesting how emotion in learning keeps things interesting, even engaging. A great game will give a superior learning experience – there’s a lot more packed in than just rewards and badges. Its the playing aspect of games that captures the imagination of all types of learners.
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