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Play to Learn – The Secrets of Gamification – Winter 2023-2024 (Vol. 3 Issue 2)

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Play to Learn – The Secrets of Gamification

 

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From the Editor’s Desk

When Learning Becomes a Game…

Play and learning are closely interconnected. From infancy, children learn through play, while the adults around them entertain them in a variety of ways. Symbolic play (pretending to…) is also very much a part of pre-school education. In fact, for toddlers, play is the natural response to their desire to adapt and understand the world around them. It is through play that they appropriate the world and concepts around them, and dare to test their limits (Nouyrigat, 2023).

Yet, as children grow, the playful aspect of learning is less and less present. It’s as if having fun can’t be tied in with school. Nevertheless, one trend is making its way back into the classroom. This trend towards gamification in classes takes advantage of game mechanisms, including video games in recent years, for educational purposes, and with students of all ages! Immediate feedback, a feeling of progress, a desire to surpass oneself, interaction with peers, objectives to be reached, accumulation of points or privileges, etc.: all of this is designed to stimulate learning, motivate, and engage students.

Classroom gaming can take many forms, from the simplest activity (a quiz game) to the most complex (turning your classroom into a role-playing game). Applications use the strategy of points and competition, whether with oneself or in a group, to ignite student interest. It is also possible to create class challenges, compile the number of positive behaviours observed, and so on.

However, “the full potential of game-based learning will only be realized once the critical role of teachers in this relatively new educational practice is properly understood and leveraged” (see p.14). Pedagogical intent must therefore always be present. That’s why, in this issue, we’ve chosen to offer you a variety of testimonials to inspire you and guide you in your teaching practices.

Not everything has to become a game, but integrating a few playful elements can sometimes make all the difference in the classroom!

Martine Rioux, Chief-Editor
@riomarti

Audrey Miller, Publisher
@millaudrey

 


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