Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Five Excellent Ted Talks on Gamification

Gamification is the big buzz word, and for good reason. The engagement possibilities that exist through well thought out classroom games could be a big part of the future of education. In this first video, Jesse Schell talks about how games might invade our world in the future. While some of his predictions such as the iPad not working out for Apple might not have come true, there are lots of key points that we can take home as educators. The fact is that people spend hundreds of hours gaming, often performing mundane tasks over and over again for the purpose of achievements. Jesse puts legs to how this all works and how it motivates people. Now the job is for educators to start looking at ways to tap into this resource of engagement for use in the classroom.

In this next video, Ali Carr-Chellman talks to how games meet boys where they are. In her eye opening video she explains some shocking statistics about how boys are being alienated by the education system.

This is a famous ramification video that speaks to how video games can make the world a better place. Jane Mcgonical has a wonderful view of how games can be utilized for real work. And that these games can create the opportunity for people to fail, learn and then succeed. When you think about the way that this theory can be applied to a classroom, you can't help but feel excited. One key moment of this video that I feel educators should pay careful attention to is the intrinsic and extrinsic rewards. Jane makes a very good point that people are usually willing to work harder for extrinsic rewards as opposed to intrinsic ones. This really gets you thinking about what we are using as motivation in our classrooms today.

Daphne Bavelier is a brain scientist that wants to make our brains smarter, better and faster. In the previous video, Ali Carr-Chellman mentions that when they interview teachers about students that play video games, they are spoke of in a degrading light. Daphne speaks on behalf of 90% of the children that play video games. Like Jane McGonigal, she mentions the overwhelming hours spent on playing video games and asks how do we leverage video games? Her research shows what the impact of video game playing has on the body and brain.

David Perry takes us on a walk of just what video games are all about. It is now part of our culture, not just something that we do in order to kill time. It has replaced the entertainment experience for most of us, and it has the potential of making a tremendous impact on our future. It brings up some of the ethical topics involved and is very inspiring to those educators that are looking to engage this next generation of students.

Bonus Video:

I know that I said five videos, but this one is also amazing. Seth Priebatsch talks about the game layer that exists already, and how we can tap into that world as a way of engaging people. This video has a marketing bend, but I am sure that you can find some great lessons for integrating some engaging ideas in the classroom.

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