Collaborate with others to utilize Game-Based Learning and engaging in Gamification of Education!

Suggestions for Creative Games for 6th Grade Needed

Lisa Pluth Researcher and Writer

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!

Comments (12)

Comment RSS
Rabble-Rouser and Fomenter of Unrest

Linkage

Was this helpful?
0

I've never run Minecraft (or played it beyond a bit of messing about during Beta), but it looks like this place can help: http://minecraftedu.com/

I don't know how your school separates their science curriculum, but if 6th grade handles basic forces and motion, I heartily recommend Portal (1 or 2). Getting Portal 2 through the Steam server also enables level creation, letting the teacher design levels to enforce the concepts they want to teach. There's also http://www.learnwithportals.com/ which is done through Valve itself (the publisher of Portal), though there's not much there.

Good Luck, and let us know how Minecraft works out!

Graduate Student - Education Policy

Researcher

Was this helpful?
0

Hello Lisa! I have been conducting research in games for STEM subjects, and I would highly recommend visiting Bill MacKenty's page (www.mackenty.org) and asking him about Minecraft. He recently implemented it into his classroom so the class could reconstruct the renaissance city Zamosc. He might be able to lend you a hand.

Minecraft is an incredibly creative game, and I personally love it. It can be very addictive, but if you are implementing it in the classroom then you get to set the time limit. My only concern is that it does not respect the laws of physics (e.g. you can place a block in the middle of the sky and it won't fall down). However, there are mods (game design modifications) for that if it is a concern. You can play on "creative" mode where there are no monsters (and thus no violence) or on "survival" mode where the student will have to build a place to survive when zombies come out at night.

Hope that helps a bit!

Graduate Student - Education Policy

Oh! I also would suggest

Was this helpful?
0

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.

A web site offering free arts and music-related games and investigations

Minecraft

Was this helpful?
0

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

Math and Engineering

RPG, RPG Forum, Creative Challenge

Was this helpful?
0

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.

i play minecraft a lot

Was this helpful?
0

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)

Researcher and Writer

hello and thank you everyone

Was this helpful?
0

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!

Sixth grade teacher from Alberta, Canada

Another option

Was this helpful?
0

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.

High School Social Studies Student Teacher

cool-math.com has got a bunch

Was this helpful?
0

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!

Well balanced children in a connected world

Minecraft

Was this helpful?
0

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

see more see less