Well our game play sessions are now complete and I am in the process of debriefing my students and doing some assessments with them. I certainly think that the excitement level of this years crop of students was possible an all time high. I don’t know if they are hearing about the game now from other students in the building or not, some heard about the CBS story that aired a year ago…..but whatever the reason I will take it.
One of the things that has been going on in my classroom during this year is Professor Bill Watson from Purdue University has spent several days in my classroom observing, video taping, and interviewing kids that have played the game. He also spent some time with me today asking me some questions. I always love sessions like this because if makes me reflect a bit deeper than I think I normally would. He asked me a lot of good questions but maybe the one that struck me the most was something to do with would kids learn from the game without the teacher. Well the simple answer is yes. They would certainly pick up some things with or without me in the room. However, the better answer is they learn more with me in the room….or at least I like to think so. I think the use of games in the classroom is only a portion of the puzzle that teachers need to assemble in order to attain best practices during the school year. I like to think that me, the game, the student, and the material all play a vital role in the educational process. The game does not, should not, or will ever replace the teacher in the room. The art of teaching is not digital….it is human.
I will share as much of the results as Professor Watson will allow on this blog. Stay tuned through the summer for details on that.