High School
Cross-Curricular

Gamifying Learning In The High School Classroom

Games can excite people and get them very engaged in trivial, even repetitive tasks. My knowledge of world geography was first built by playing Risk without knowing I was learning. That’s why gamifying our lessons in high school classes can do wonders for retention, behavior, and achievement. But not every game is worthy, and you can’t simply make everything a contest. Gamification can be tricky to use right, and these resources really helped me build fun, engaging games in my lessons.
A Collection By William O'Dea
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Gamifying Learning In The High School Classroom
  • William O'Dea says:
    While I enjoy video games, I think traditional tabletop games are much better suited for my classroom. I used to go over my old board games and read the rules for inspiration to gamify my lessons, but then I found this page online. It’s from a site devoted to board games, and it explains all the different kinds of rules (or mechanics) used by games. This has helped me create innovative lessons that keep almost all students engaged.
  • fastcocreate.com
    fastcocreate.com

    How One Teacher Is Making High School--and Physics--Fun by Gamifying The Classroom

    7 minute read
    William O'Dea says:
    Now *this* is interesting. A physics teacher created a World of Warcraft-like video game meant to enhance (but not replace) traditional teaching. Although the article title implies this is only about content, it helps work on engagement and behavior as well. I’m a little concerned that the game aspect will distract some students, but I’m positive this is how gamification works. Plus, it’s free—and what teacher doesn’t like free?
  • William O'Dea says:
    I’m well aware of how many roles I have as a teacher, so while I was excited about bringing game elements into my lessons and classroom, I wasn’t sure where to start. Worse, I’ve seen “games” developed by some teachers that, to be honest, were dull and boring. That’s why I love this video, even if the voice-over is a bit weird. It’s game designers specifically talking about how to gamify a classroom. Why not learn from actual game people?
  • edutopia.org
    edutopia.org

    Epic Fail or Win? Gamifying Learning in My Classroom

    6 minute read
    William O'Dea says:
    Besides being an educator, I’m a gamer, so I know games. That’s why I loved this article. It skips the obligatory long-winded definition of games for 11 specific ways to gamify your lessons, including free software to help get you started. The author then goes through how gamification worked for her, including successful bits and the stuff that didn’t work.
  • William O'Dea says:
    I love reading the research and pedagogical origins of educational theories, but I also love practical advice so I can see how that research translates into action. This was one of the first articles I had ever read about gamifying the classroom, and I love it! It starts with an explanation of gamification, then gets into practical ways to use that. I’m not sure about tip #3 (add video games to your lessons), but the rest is great.
BloomBoard SparkOther Cross-Curricular
BloomBoard Asks:What games do you love? How can you incorporate why you love that game into a lesson?