How to Use Gaming to Inspire a Love of Learning

Friday, August 24, 2018 / 21 comments

Welcome to the Gaming Age

Trust me, and you’re not the only teacher in the world with students
who are obsessed with gaming. Minecraft, at one point, had 1.4 million people play
at the same time. In fact, Minecraft has nearly 75 million players a month - which,
let’s be honest, probably includes your students. Though it may seem counterintuitive
to allow your child to continue playing games, gaming isn’t all that bad: games can
actually inspire a level of learning and creative thinking that will put your child on a path
to success in the realm of STEM and coding, steps ahead of their peers and ready to
face whatever comes their way.

Good Game, Good STEM

Games exist with a set of rules and laws a player must follow to play. This exposure
to limitations and hard rules can develop incredible rational thinking skills in children.
Which can be very helpful for grammar and other writing skills as long as they’re able
to be guided to that connection. Some games can even help prepare your child for the
pressures and realities of working in a STEM-related field. Games can teach kids how
to utilize their logical thinking, solve challenging problems within a set of laws, and even -
depending on the game - teach your child how to work with teams remotely. These kinds
of skills are assets in STEM fields, especially in a time of constant movement and trending
remote work.

Writing and Critical Thinking Learning Through Games

With encouragement, and limits, the thinking your student uses to find that new rare ore in
Minecraft, solve a logic puzzle to get to the next level, or push through a hard enemy
encounter can be used to inspire learning and problem-solving outside of the world of pixels.
Children and teens right now are some of the most literate in generations because they have
to read, and take in information constantly. So use that to your advantage!

Just like in literature and art where there isn’t only one answer, it’s the same with games. Try to guide
your students to use those same critical thinking skills that they use for games and use
them for art and literature. Ask them hard questions, push their boundaries, and show that
it’s possible to improve. You’ll notice that if it’s a question they can’t answer, they will seek
out the information they need to solve it. A learning moment that will stay with them forever.

You could also potentially alter some of your curriculum to allow students to write essays
on a game of their choosing. It may seem a bit difficult to imagine, but so long as they’re
exercising those same critical thinking skills, it could be a great opportunity for the students
to use something they are passionate about and connect it to what they are learning.

A Bright Future

As they learn more about the skills and tools for critical thinking and applying the lessons
they’ve already learned to education, you’ll see an explosion of passion for subjects that
perhaps that student hadn’t even thought of as interesting. Not only that, but they’ll be
developing a skill that they will be able to use for the rest of their lives.

If you’re looking for some more creative ideas for teaching, please make sure to
check our home page! We’re always putting up new content that we know you will be
able to use in your classrooms or homes!



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