The power of video games: an ally to consider

As part of REFER 2018, Carl Deveau, Director of Partnerships at Classcraft, presented in a workshop the reasons why video games are so popular with young people.

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On March 22 and 23, the Rendez-vous des Écoles Francophones en Réseau was held at Louis-Joseph Papineau High School. Under the theme "school and learning: networks and links", the event once again highlighted exchanges and sharing.

One workshop I had the chance to attend is that of Carl Deveau, Director of Partnerships at Classcraft. In particular, he presented the various reasons why video games are so popular with the population, especially with young people, regardless of gender.

Why use games in teaching?

In order to reach the young people of the generation with which we are working, there are different ways of doing things. One of these is the gamification of learning. This gamification, or gamification in English, has a definite correlation with academic motivation and involvement in the task. According to Mr. Deveau's sources, 80% of 13-17 year old Canadians play games. Of this number, contrary to what one might think, half are women. In addition, young gamers would spend the same amount of time playing video games as they would be at school benches.

The power of games

According to Carl Deveau, games have the power to create meaning and internalize motivation. In his workshop he presented different example games and explained the aspects that made them so appealing to gamers.

Allow autonomy

Do whatever you want from a blank page. A great example of a game that promotes autonomy is Minecraft. In addition to its recognized educational potential, it is greatly appreciated by young people who can create as they please in this world.

Foster a sense of competence

Try. Be mistaken. Restart. Learn! Skill comes with practice, games that allow mistakes and start over after being "dead" encourage the participant to improve over the course of his trials as in Flappy bird.

Live social relationships

Exchange with others, live moments together with them, get out of isolation. The human being is a social being (Allain, 2018), the game can allow you to build a social network of people who have the same tastes as you. An example: World of Warcraft.

Encourage discovery

What made Pokemon GO! created such a craze? Discovery. Go on an adventure. Discover new things, characters, objects, etc. captivates players.

Arouse survival instinct

Adventure games that require the player to defend themselves are popular with players because they require questioning and reacting according to the challenges posed on our path. Isn't that motivating?

Provide immediate feedback

While at school the efforts of students are sometimes rewarded belatedly, some games offer the instantaneity so much sought after among young people by indicating the result of their action in real time. This allows learning to be learned as it progresses.

Be told a story

Read, listen, live a story. Choosing the outcome comes to seek the imagination and directly involve the person immersed in the game.

Finally, following the presentation of these elements which capture the interest of the players, many of whom are young people, Mr. Deveau presented how Classcraft allows to support the teacher in the implementation of a gamification approach.

Want to find out more about gamification and the tools that exist on the subject? I invite you to start your research on the website of École branchée and EngagED Learning!


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About the Author

Julie R.-Bordeleau
Julie R.-Bordeleau
Former teacher and mother of a military family of 4 boys, Julie R-Bordeleau is an alternative learning guide and author. She loves discovering new educational and holistic resources and approaches that allow her clients to learn and develop in different ways, depending on their needs. Its website, its newsletter and its services are dedicated to adults who are changing the world in their own way, whether they are parents-educators, parents or professionals.

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