You can't throw an angry bird these days without hitting someone talking about video games in education. The interwebs are buzzing about the possibilities and potential downsides. With the ninth annual Games for Change conference in New York and the eighth annual Games+Learning+Society (GLS) conference back-to-back in just a few weeks, now is a perfect time to check out some videos about games for learning.
Video Playlist: Video Games for Learning
Watch the first video below, or watch the whole playlist on YouTube.
- Professor and Game Designer Katie Salen on Games, Learning, and New Media (06:52)
What would a school look like if it was built on gaming principles? Hear from students and teachers at Quest to Learn, a New York middle school that uses video game-based learning models as the basis of its curriculum.
- National STEM Video Game Challenge 2012 (03:56)
This is a pretty phenomenal video game development contest sponsored by the White House where kids compete to create STEM video games. This year's winners were just announced a few weeks ago!
- Changing the world one game at a time - Tech Tonic (04:48)
In just a few weeks, the Games for Change conference will happen in NYC. Learn more about games for social good in this interview with Asi Burak, the co-president of Games for Change.
- Jane McGonigal: Truths & Myths in Gaming (04:14)
Rock star video game designer and author Jane McGonigal talks about the benefits of being a gamer and debunks some of the most common myths about gamers.
- Teaching with Games: GLPC Case Study: Joel (03:42)
This video case study is part of a national survey of teachers who work with video games in the classroom. The results of the "Teacher Attitudes About Digital Games in the Classroom" survey were just published by the Cooney Center in May 2012.
- Tom Chatfield: 7 ways video games engage the brain (16:29)
A classic TED Talk from 2010: gaming theorist Tom Chatfield breaks down the psychology of game players and talks about why video games are so engaging and compelling.
- Teaching Math With Kinect (03:50)
Two university students work with a professor to build a learning tool to engage math students kinesthetically using a Microsoft Kinect for the Xbox 360.
- Wisconsin Research Profiles: Constance Steinkuehler (04:36)
University of Wisconsin-Madison has been fertile ground for researchers who are interested in video games and education. This video profiles researcher Constance Steinkuehler's work on making online gaming more effective for education.
- Games and Education Scholar James Paul Gee on Video Games, Learning, and Literacy (05:51)
Video-games-in-education luminary James Paul Gee makes a compelling case for how video games embody contextualized learning through problem-solving. He also discusses lessons that educators can take from video-game-style assessments.
- Overview of the Epistemic Games Group (05:30)
Another group at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the Epistemic Games group studies how digital learning tools can be implemented into classroom settings to help teach 21st-century skills.
More on Games for Education
There's a wealth of information out there about games (especially video games) and learning -- it can be hard to separate the wheat from the chaff. You may hear the word "gamification" tossed about; it usually refers to making non-game, real-life activities more game-like. In fact, there's a conference for that too -- the Gamification Summit in San Francisco, the same week as Games for Change in NYC. The phrase "serious games" pops up, as well -- that is, games designed for a purpose other than pure entertainment. Ready to learn more about the myriad ways in which games can be used in an educational setting? Here are a few places to start looking for more information.