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Showing posts from February, 2016

Learning Reflections of Games & Learning Part 1

Understanding of games and learning My understanding of games and game-based learning (GBL) this semester has been transformed by the myriad of ways in which I have been engaged in course work in INTE 5320 at University of Colorado Denver. Participation in this course so far has only taken shape over 6 weeks. It’s really been a blur, and I feel as though I am being assimilated into a culture of both playful and academic cohorts without really being totally cognizant. It just sort of happens in Remi’s courses by implementation of profound ecological pedagogy. Which finally comes crashing into a sense of awareness when reflecting upon the course.

Through the course readings I have learnt what it means to be a player of games and why games and learning are important for the development of 21st century skills and knowledge. As a class, we’ve dissected portions of seminal games and learning works such as:

“Situated Language and Learning: A critique of traditional schooling. James Paul Gee …

My Affinity With Unity 3D

Introduction As part of the graduate course work in INTE 5320 at University of Colorado Denver, and continued scholarship in games & learning, I’m sharing my experiences as a participant in an affinity space about games and games & learning. This is an ongoing project focused on affinity spaces and participatory cultures with syntheses of theory and the works of James Paul Gee and Elizabeth Hayes “Nurturing Affinity Spaces and Game-Based Learning.”

Background I’m a gamer, game artist, and wanna-be game creator or developer. I’ve “paid my dues” so to speak as an artist in the game industry for six plus years (see example of work here). There were moments of incredible satisfaction and joy in work. But since the mobile game market exploded (sometime between the iPhone 3 and 4), I can say my interest in the types of games I’m willing to be part of has dramatically declined. I started to ask myself why? Why would I want to spend my day making sprites for monotonous and boring cli…

Teachers Need To Level Up Too

When considering a digital game based learning curriculum, there are potentially many barriers. Curriculum requirements, game content, accessibility, and community support to name a few. But what about the teachers themselves? What kinds of teachers are using games in their classroom? Could the teachers be a barrier to the digital game based learning (DGBL) curriculum? An article I read last week from edutopia.org called “Strategies to Level Up Learning” by Matthew Farber briefly addressed some of these questions while examining a 2014 report titled “Level up learning: A national survey on teaching with digital games.” The article really piqued my interest because I am very interested in how adults are navigating DGBL as learners and also in teaching scenarios. The teachers who use DGBL in the classroom are referred to as GUTS or NUTS game-using teachers or non-game using teachers. I find it interesting how the teachers were classified and defined in a way that may affect DGBL. It’s …

Who Are Modern Learners and Why is Mobile GBL Important?

Let’s face it, in any given day of the week there could be plenty of down time that has the potential to be a learning moment rather than wasted in the mundane. Waiting in line for coffee or lunch, on the commuter rail, or otherwise waiting on something. Most of us reach for our phones in these moments and check emails, Facebook notifications, Twitter feeds, or perhaps play games. Since I started graduate school at University of Colorado Denver a year ago, I now tend to reach for Canvas, Twitter, and our course blogs on my phone or iPad. These platforms for social learning are all part of the Information and Learning Technology courses and learning ecology at CU Denver. I have yet to play mobile games as part of the requirements for the courses, but I imagine it would be well received, and highly possible to fit “playful” moments in the learning experience at CU Denver. In fact, I decided to take a Games & Learning course this term due to my own interest in the subject.

Education…

Crafting Accessibility and Affinity Spaces, What I Learned by Playing Hearthstone

What are Play Journals? As part of the Games and Learning course and study with University of Colorado Denver Information and Learning Technologies Master’s program, students will participate in both shared and individual play sessions. These play sessions are part of “learning by doing” and reflection necessary to understand what it means to be a learner through playing games. The play journals are a synthesis of scholarship and reflection on play per the chosen game.

Playing HearthstoneHearthstone is a single player, card, turned based, strategy game that can be played against an artificial intelligence (AI) opponent, in “Solo Adventures.” It can also be played against other players over the internet including friends on your Battlenet list. Hearthstone is available on a computer and most mobile devices making it very accessible, and it’s free to play! Playing the game in solo mode will initially unlock cards and other heroes. This serves as a sort of tutorial that must be complete…