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From Shanghai, China. A volunteer in Walnut Valley Unified School District.

"Gamifying the process of

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"Gamifying the process of academic studies" seems a rather interesting idea to us educators these days somehow. However, it will never be easy for us to implement since we have to be relaxed person ourselves. By the way, how effectively will "The Badge System" work? Will it be useful for students to gain experimental experiences, apart from text books??

Matthew, I really enjoyed

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Matthew, I really enjoyed reading this as a future ESL teacher I look foward to "gamifying" activities for my students to help with the learning process.

Social studies teacher & educational technology adjunct pursuing an Ed.D.

Thanks! Regarding

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Thanks! Regarding literature, I would look into "embedded assessments." As for badge research, HASTAC has an excellent, and thorough, annotated bibliography here: http://www.hastac.org/digital-badges-bibliography

Founder of VocabularySpellingCity.com and Science4Us.com

I've thought a lot about

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I've thought a lot about leader boards, intrinsic motivation, and skill building. Academics keep raising the question that if we pay the kids to read or build leader boards or use other extrinsic motivators, we are depriving or at least distracting the students from the intrinsic motivator of desire to read or learn for it's own sake.

Is there any literature which talks about how the skills built in sports or video games are any less valuable if they were built to win, not for their own sake?

Founder of VocabularySpellingCity.com and Science4Us.com

Gamify! Sounds like a magic

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Gamify! Sounds like a magic spell. And it works like one too.

Having gone platinum as a game producer and now with nearly a decade in educational games, I have enormous respect for "curriculum" that actually covers a body of knowledge, which is hard to do in a game. But, there are ways to use the elements that make games so engaging, in educational product design. Here's some game elements that can be broadly used:
- badges for mastery of educational material (which need to be refreshed helping to drive lessons into long-term memory)
- immediate feedback. There's nothing less motivating that doing some activity, turning it in, and having it graded weeks later. Immediate feedback is magic!
- value-added feedback. This is both adding sound effects ( applause, groans etc) and some scaffolding to guide them.

Here's a simple game that can be used to build vocabulary skills but which adds in many game elements. This is an unusual game in that it's great for whole class efforts with students taking turns. Particularly at elementary school level:
http://www.spellingcity.com/wordorama.html

Community Manager at Edutopia

Hi Maree, you might find it

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Hi Maree, you might find it useful to check out the #seriousPLAY hashtag on Twitter. It's what people used to live tweet the Serious Play conference earlier this year. There are also some resources on the conference site:

http://www.seriousplayconference.com/

I love the phrase

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I love the phrase Gamification! Perhaps it is well known, but it is new terminology to me. I am really in awe of how you have managed to incorporate gamification into your classroom and can only think how much more engaged I would have been in my lessons (many years ago) if the learning had been gamified. What amazing times we live in!

One of my roles at work involves training my coworkers in the various kinds of software we use and this has really peaked my interest in gamification. I can see how training adults would be different to teaching children, for example, I can’t ask my staff to take a break from their work to play Assassins Creed for a few hours. But, some of the techniques you have used to gamify your classroom are absolutely transferable to adults in the workplace. For instance, I love the idea of creating a digital badge website and a leader board. People are just as competitive at any age and I could really see this motivating my staff group.

Thankyou for sharing your experience, it has given me something to think about and follow up on. I am currently studying an undergraduate degree in Internet Communications and Business Information Systems, mostly because I see a huge gap between the functionality of our core business systems and the technical skills of the staff required to use them. Gamification would be such an engaging and effective way to achieve this goal!

Social studies teacher & educational technology adjunct pursuing an Ed.D.

That's great! I think the

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That's great! I think the key to leader boards is stressing that points are not grades, but rather intrinsic motivators. +1 for you! :)

[quote]I wrote a paper about gamification of learning in my master's program and would have loved to include such an excellent example of successful gamification in a classroom! I love the idea of the badge system, and of students developing badges for the historical figures they're studying. What a great way for them to synthesize their learning in a context they find interesting. In a lot of the research I read for my paper, people reported a similar phenomenon that you reported with students striving to improve their work to improve their ratings on the leader boards. Some researchers suggested that using leader boards might foster negative student competition, but as you witnessed, I think kids look at it as a personal challenge to be the best, and not so much "I want to be the best because I want to be better than a certain other kid in my class." And even so, a little friendly competition that results in positive academic gain is good in my book![/quote][quote]I wrote a paper about gamification of learning in my master's program and would have loved to include such an excellent example of successful gamification in a classroom! I love the idea of the badge system, and of students developing badges for the historical figures they're studying. What a great way for them to synthesize their learning in a context they find interesting. In a lot of the research I read for my paper, people reported a similar phenomenon that you reported with students striving to improve their work to improve their ratings on the leader boards. Some researchers suggested that using leader boards might foster negative student competition, but as you witnessed, I think kids look at it as a personal challenge to be the best, and not so much "I want to be the best because I want to be better than a certain other kid in my class." And even so, a little friendly competition that results in positive academic gain is good in my book![/quote]

Instructional Designer at Lewis-Clark State College

I wrote a paper about

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I wrote a paper about gamification of learning in my master's program and would have loved to include such an excellent example of successful gamification in a classroom! I love the idea of the badge system, and of students developing badges for the historical figures they're studying. What a great way for them to synthesize their learning in a context they find interesting. In a lot of the research I read for my paper, people reported a similar phenomenon that you reported with students striving to improve their work to improve their ratings on the leader boards. Some researchers suggested that using leader boards might foster negative student competition, but as you witnessed, I think kids look at it as a personal challenge to be the best, and not so much "I want to be the best because I want to be better than a certain other kid in my class." And even so, a little friendly competition that results in positive academic gain is good in my book!

Social studies teacher & educational technology adjunct pursuing an Ed.D.

My badge system has been a

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My badge system has been a work-in-progress. I explained it to students: I am the issuer, they are the earner, and ClassBadges is the displayer (there are many alternatives). It's important to emphasize that badges aren't grades. They should have a spirit of fun and be given an any particular moment a student does something, like give a creative answer or help a classmate. Students also suggest badge ideas. As with video games, badges are a fun and social feature, but not the focus of the game itself. Have fun with it! :)

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