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Gamify Your Classroom

A Field Guide to Game-Based Learning – Revised edition


Matthew Farber

This completely revised and expanded field guide is packed with new innovative ideas on how to implement game-based learning and gamification techniques in everyday teaching. With nearly two dozen more experts than the first edition, this book contains interviews with more than 70 authorities in the field, including academics such as James Paul Gee, Kurt Squire, Mizuko (Mimi) Ito, Lee Sheldon, Jordan Shapiro, and Mary Flanagan. The author also shares conversations with experts from numerous organizations such as Common Sense Media, iCivics, DragonBox, Connected Camps, GlassLab Games, Schell Games, Institute of Play, Games for Change, BrainPOP, Tiggly, Toca Boca, ThinkFun, BrainQuake, Filament Games, BreakoutEDU, Kahoot, Classcraft, and more. Featuring a new introduction, as well as a foreword from USA Today’s national K-12 education writer Greg Toppo, this book provides new practical lesson plan ideas, ready-to-use games, and links for further research in each updated chapter. Included are best practice recommendations from star game-based learning teachers, including Steve Isaacs, Peggy Sheehy, Michael Matera, Rafranz Davis, Zack Gilbert, and Paul Darvasi. Regardless of your teaching discipline or grade level, whether you are new to game-based learning or if you have experience and want to take a deeper dive, this book will engage and reinvigorate the way you teach and how your students learn!

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Chapter 9. Game Labs


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Research for this book brought me to a treasure trove of games that were both grounded in research and readily adaptable to my classroom. For example, the City University of New York (CUNY) Games Network has a portal entirely dedicated to teaching with games, as does Arizona State University, Teachers College at Columbia University, and American University. And the list goes on!

This chapter features interviews with several researchers in the games and learning community. First, I speak with Kurt Squire, formerly of the Games + Learning + Society (GLS) Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The annual conference at Madison was widely attended by many in the game-based learning space. Next, I speak to the director of the Field Day Lab, also at the University of Wisconsin. Field Day specializes in augmented reality and interactive storytelling (ARIS), a location-based mobile game, authoring tool. The Games Research Lab at Teacher College, which is situated at Columbia University, in New York, follows. The lab, headed by Joey J. Lee, published EcoChains: Arctic Crisis, a commercially sold card game. Its core mechanics teach about the cause and effects of global climate change. In 2015, the Educational Gaming Environments Technical Education Research Center—or EdGE at TERC—relaunched Zoombinis, the lovable learning ← 159 | 160 → game from the 1990s. I speak with the executive director about Zoombinis and other free and low cost digital games on its site. Finally I share conversations...

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