The MindShift Guide to Digital Games and Learning

MindShiftGames-140x140MindShift Guide to Digital Games and Learning

How can games unlock a rich world of learning? This is the big question at the heart of the growing games and learning movement that’s gaining momentum in education. The MindShift Guide to Digital Games and Learning [PDF] explains key ideas in game-based learning, pedagogy, implementation, and assessment. This guide makes sense of the available research and provides suggestions for practical use.

The MindShift Guide to Digital Games and Learning started as a series of blog posts written by Jordan Shapiro with support from the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop and the Games and Learning Publishing Council. We’ve brought together what we felt would be the most relevant highlights of Jordan’s reporting to create a dynamic, in-depth guide that answers many of the most pressing questions that educators, parents, and life-long learners have raised around using digital games for learning. While we had educators in mind when developing this guide, any lifelong learner can use it to develop a sense of how to navigate the games space in an informed and meaningful way.

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Here's a preview of the table of contents:

Introduction: Getting in the Game (Page 4)
An overview of games in the classroom from Katie Salen Tekinbaş, executive director of the Institute of Play.

What the Research Says About Gaming and Screen Time (Page 6)
Much of the research around digital games and screen time is evolving. Pediatricians, academics, educators, and researchers are working to find answers to how games and technology affect learners of all ages.

How to Start Using Digital Games for Learning (Page 14)
Since each learning environment is unique, here are some steps to assessing your resources before committing to a particular game or platform. See how some educators are using digital games in the classroom and how they find support.

How to Choose a Digital Learning Game (Page 19)
The sheer volume of games classified as educational can be overwhelming. This section gives you a starting point for game selection by providing an understanding of the types of games available in the marketplace and how to go about selecting them.

Overcoming Obstacles for Using Digital Games in the Classroom (Page 27)
As game use in the classroom continues to grow, barriers to deployment also need to be addressed. A recent survey of teachers outlines exactly which obstacles get in the way of successful implementation; solutions to those concerns are outlined in this section.

How Teachers Are Using Games in the Classroom (Page 30)
Examples of how teachers use games are embedded throughout the guide (including video examples), but this section takes an in-depth look at how some teachers are using games in the classroom and their real-life struggles and victories.

Below, you'll find the blog posts that kicked off the MindShift Guide to Digital Games and Learning.

Games in the Classroom: Overcoming the Obstacles

Games in the Classroom: Overcoming the Obstacles

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There are ways around every obstacle.

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Using Games for Learning: Practical Steps to Get Started

Using Games for Learning: Practical Steps to Get Started

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Check your hardware, find suitable games, play and learn from colleagues – tips for getting started with game-based learning.

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Need Help Picking the Right Learning Game? Some Things to Consider

Need Help Picking the Right Learning Game? Some Things to Consider

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Understanding gaming genres can help teachers pick the right one for specific learning goals.

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How To Choose A Learning Game

How To Choose A Learning Game

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Keep in mind some of the key elements of a good educational game when trying to sort through the hundreds of games available.

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Video Games and the Future of the Textbook

Video Games and the Future of the Textbook

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Curriculum designers are rethinking not only the textbook, but educational content delivery in general.

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Screen Time That’s Valuable For Young Kids

Screen Time That’s Valuable For Young Kids

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Most people agree that implementing game-based learning makes sense for older students, but what about really young kids?

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In the Bustling, Interactive Classroom, A Place for Digital Games

In the Bustling, Interactive Classroom, A Place for Digital Games

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Teachers can use games as a supplement that enables increased one-on-one learning between teacher and student.

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What Happens When School Design Looks Like Game Design

What Happens When School Design Looks Like Game Design

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At the Quest To Learn School, curriculum experts and game designers work together to reimagine what school might look like if it drew its inspiration from video games.

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How Teachers Can Use Video Games In The Humanities Classroom

How Teachers Can Use Video Games In The Humanities Classroom

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What if teachers used video games as texts? How can educators teach kids to think critically about the underlying messages in commercial games and leverage video games for their ability to engage students and provoke conversation.

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From Mars to Minecraft: Teachers Bring the Arcade to the Classroom

From Mars to Minecraft: Teachers Bring the Arcade to the Classroom

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Teachers have found many different ways of using digital games in the classroom. But what kind of games are these students playing? And how are teachers incorporating them in the classroom?

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