Best video games for learning a language

Relations between Video Gaming and Children’s Executive Functions

Language learning in particular seems a perfect place to try “gamified” classes. Some schools are already using Minecraft in French classes – the idea is that students work together to build a “learning zone” in the Minecraft space – finding new words to help them along the way. Indeed, James Paul Gee, a leading researcher in the area of video games as language learning tools, suggests that role-playing games such as the elder scrolls series or World of Warcraft offer an ideal learning space for what he calls “at-risk” learners.

Game-based learning is a new teaching technique made possible by the constant technological progress. As it climbs in popularity, it’s worth looking at how it impacts students. I watch social media closely and it’s my job to share some of the hot topics on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and other outlets that teachers, principals, students, and parents are contributing. Game-based learning is exactly what it sounds like–students acquiring knowledge through playing games. Thanks to the influx of technology in the classroom, many people and companies have designed games with education in mind.

Best video games for learning a language

Have you ever considered the science behind learning to read? the developers of the preschool online learning tool reading eggs have – and that’s why studies have shown that 91 percent of parents see a “noticeable improvement” in their kids’ reading abilities after using the program. While other educational programs build content around what seems like it should work or mimicking teaching strategies already used in the classroom, reading eggs is based on scientific research into the process of kids learning a language. As early as age 2, children using reading eggs can begin exploring read-aloud books, watching videos, and playing educational alphabet games that equip them with “pre-reading” skills like identifying letters and sounds.

According to Educauses article, 7 Things you Should Know About Game Based Learning, gaming can create a dynamic that can inspire learners to develop skills and competencies as they focus on the activities of the game. They can: function as individual learning activities powerful content delivery mechanism over several sessions that last for the duration of the course. To deliver content as a game, faculty members tend to divide the syllabus into levels through which the students must progress, with students getting feedback rather than grades. For it to be effective, the game: must align with learning outcome should not be competitive in the conventional sense sometimes, in fact, the game might require students to work collaboratively to solve problems, while in other contexts, game mechanics might make students compete against one another to reach a personal best. Why use games? According to the UMass-Amherst, Centre for Teaching and Faculty Development The Pedagogy of Games, FAQ, goals, rules, challenge, and interaction can be used to engage students and increase learning outcomes. It can help: build an emotional connection to learning and subject matter provides an opportunity for feedback and practice can be customized to individualized teaching digital Pedagogy, Gaming, and Mass Collaboration – Duke Franklin Humanities InstituteBenefits of Games Based Learning in her article, “ Harnessing the Power of Game Dynamics,” Kim states that gamification is the process of game thinking and game mechanics to engage users and solve problems. The author states that games can help in learning because people are more: motivated to achieve more in games than in the real world and that games are designed to deliver an optimal experience to the user. Additionally, the author states that game dynamics can: raise the level of user engagement with library resources, and can be used to help users solve problems more effectively and quickly according to Kim, typically, the protocol of the game is to meet relatively simple conditions in return for attainable awards, and as the conditions get more complicated and challenging, the awards get bigger. The author also states that a well-designed game gives players structure and meaning to work towards the award. It has the benefit of being transparent about what info is needed to achieve goals, rewards efforts fairly, and provides feedback quickly, which is how game dynamics motivate. Salter claims that not only is the incorporation of games an opportunity to shape content in a new light, it also allows faculty members to sharpen their digital skills. According to Toccura Porter, in their article “ Games and Activities: Alternative Foundation for Library Instructional Learning,” there should be consideration of the educational outcomes that need to be fulfilled, whenever a game is incorporated into the classroom. He also states that educational emphasis in 21st C encourages inclusive teaching and student-centered learning approaches, and that games are an emerging media that play a central role in the development of the current generation. He also emphasized that games can be useful for bridging understanding of library research concepts and that there are numerous online resources and examples already available for faculty members and librarians to assist in the design of games. However, it should be noted that Spiegelman and Glass state that a lot of game-based learning can be done with a small investment of funds and many can be implemented with very little overhead. Additionally, the benefits of game-based learning, including increased engagement and motivation, greater learning, are too compelling to ignore. Boyhun Kim, in the article “ Harnessing the Power of Game Dynamics, not all games are fun or worth playing. If there is poor design, the game will not be fun, and then students will not play it. The recommendation that the author makes is to not over gamify. She recommends starting small and making the game user-centered. Additionally, if the game is too heavily focused on educational aspects: will result in luke-warm reactions from patrons.

Math video games can enhance students’ motivation to learn, but it may depend on how students play, researchers at NYU’s Steinhardt School and the city university of New York have found in a study of middle-schoolers. While playing a math video game either competitively or collaboratively with another player—as compared to playing alone—students adopted a mastery mindset that is highly conducive to learning. Moreover, students’ interest and enjoyment in playing the math video game increased when they played with another student.

Students are challenged to develop interpersonal, analytical, and creative skills, discouraging absenteeism, feelings of boredom, and reluctance, leading to academic achievement. However, simulations not only exhibit positive effects in the learning experience of the student but, also, do so for instructors, as well, in the context of teaching experience. For academics, simulations raise the level of performance, encouraging students to be more alert and attentive during class activities (Navidad, 2013 ), and thus to achieve better learning outcomes. In this vein, instructors are urged to design simulations to be as challenging as possible to stimulate student interest in interacting with the simulation as well as with their peers.

 

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