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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Suggestions for Creative Games for 6th Grade Needed

Suggestions for Creative Games for 6th Grade Needed

Related Tags: Game-Based Learning
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12 Replies 2161 Views

Our new sixth grade teacher is asking me for suggestions for age appropriate creative games for her new classroom next year. Most of the games we have at the school are designed for younger students. My son (age 11) loves a game called Mindcraft. This is a building game that is fairly creative and good for spatial learning and basic geometry. It seems like we should be able to run it on our server (to protect the children from the online players) and that it is possible to disable the creepy monsters section of the game. However, I'm still unsure that we should add it because it can be fairly addictive for some kids. Does anyone have any experience with Mindcraft in the classroom? Any suggestions for alternative creative games they have used in the classroom for this age group? Thank you for any suggestions in advance!

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Sarina's picture
Sarina
Graduate Student - Education Policy

Oh! I also would suggest games like Spore, Universe Sandbox, and SimCity as some creative commercial games. If you are looking for "serious games" as they are often called, you could look into Escher's World (combines art and geometry), Alice, or Scratch. Alice and Scratch are introductory computer programming games where students can design games, stories, or animations...it might be a little challenging for 6th graders, but it definitely teaches some great skills.

Artsology's picture
Artsology
A web site offering free arts and music-related games and investigations

My going-into 5th grade son is very addicted to Minecraft, as are most of his friends.
Check out these games for some ideas:
Artsology Games

Michael Zelin's picture
Michael Zelin
Math and Engineering

Here is a link to a free educational gaming site: http://sponsorschoose.org
- students puzzle together text, image, & audio pieces
- post their projects (it's a part of project based learning) online and can collaborate, rate each other projects (peer rating), etc.
- can add links of non-profit organizations (a part of service learning) and get service learning hours
- can add sponsor links and get prizes
Additionally to this puzzle-like game, there is an RPG & RPG Forum capabilities:
- choose an avatar
- start as an apprentice
- complete challenges to advance to the next level (reward rate increases)
- reflect progress in a form of Life Road
- develop a central story line - add your pieces or start your own
Can be used for any subject.

sa's picture

i play minecraft a lot, its a bit like lego in that its more an art program the since and is very much a box of bits that you need to think what to do with. however you can play it as a game where you need to find the blocks 1st(e.g. if you want a red carpet you need to sheer sheep for wool and make red die from flowers)

Lisa Pluth's picture
Lisa Pluth
Researcher and Writer

hello and thank you everyone for all the helpful suggestions, I will give all these great ideas to our 6th grade teachers. I'm sure the klds are going to LOVE it!

Missrithenay's picture
Missrithenay
Sixth grade teacher from Alberta, Canada

I'm a big fan of gamestar mechanic (http://www.gamestarmechanic.com) My sixth graders really enjoyed learning how to make their own games (which the site teaches them in a fun, interactive way so I don't have to! ;) and it was very interesting to see what they came up with when I assigned them to, say, create a game to bring awareness to an issue of your choosing.

Sam Dunham's picture
Sam Dunham
High School Social Studies Student Teacher

cool-math.com has got a bunch of logic games that most schools and teachers don't mind the kids playing.

By far the best educational game I've ever seen is an old game I played when I was in fifth grade. It was called 3in3, and it had dozens of word and number puzzles that gradually got harder as the game progressed. It's completely appropriate and engrossing for third grade through adult. Most of the games can be tackled individually, in small groups, or even working together as a whole class to figure it out.

The game is available for free online. I downloaded it in college and finally beat it!

Quib.ly's picture
Quib.ly
Well balanced children in a connected world

Like most of the people in the group, even we would pick up minecraft. In fact a school in Sweden has now put Minecraft on its curriculum as a compulsory subject for 13-year-olds. We think all education systems be harnessing children's interest in computer games and using them as an integral part of learning.

http://quib.ly/qu/do-computer-games-have-a-place-in-the-classroom

iGameMom's picture
iGameMom
Review and Recommend Educational Apps for Kids

I agree with many other comments, Minecraft is a great game. Kids can use multiple skill sets that are all useful in the real world.
In addition, you might try Toontastic (http://ow.ly/hjY4u). It is not a game per se, but you can build games into it. It is an app letting kids create video and learn story telling. Kids can co-create stories as a team.
Another good one is Scribblenauts (http://ow.ly/hjY0e). Kids have to think of a solution and have to spell the word correctly to solve the problem. It will test out their creativity and spelling at the same time.

Miguelina Krier's picture

I play Minecraft and created an after school club in my school for 4th and 5th graders to play. Beyond the lessons you can plan, students become naturals at learning what they need to in order to be successful at this game. They learn to work together, find resources they need, figure out and solve problems, plan and implement those plans. Minecraftedu is a mod that is specifically made for use in the classroom. It is easier to implement if you are not familiar with the game and managing servers. I am currently working on setting up a server for the upcoming school year, which is a bit more complex than the first one I created last year

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