Gaming in Education – Week 7

Let the games begin!

Let’s face it, whether it’s playing games in the real world or playing digital games, kids love it! Using techniques and strategies that will really capture the interest and curiosities of students is such an important aspect of teaching, and one way of achieving this is by incorporating gaming and learning.

gaming

Games not only engage students in the classroom, but they also captivate and motivate them to a point where they are happy to invest hours upon hours of their own time learning while playing games (Anetta,  2008). Introducing gaming into the classroom is not just about giving the students something that they are happy to do, it’s about using a powerful learning tool which will aide teachers in the successful delivery of curriculum.

 

Most games are based on rewards, points, leaderboards and levels and these are all things that intrinsically motivate gamers (McKay, 2013).  As teachers, we can methodically choose educational gaming programs which have been replicated and adapted to suite the educational setting., or we can have our students creating their own computer game based on their own interests, or where a theme or specific objective is set out by the educator. Most games are played over the internet and through channels where people can connect, so it is important that we keep this mind, and reiterate to the children about being safe.

One program that enables users to create and share games is sploder. This week, we were required to create our own game through this program. Below is an example of a game that I created.

sploder

Please click to view game

 

 

References

Anetta, L. (2003). Video games in education: Why they should be used and why they are being used. Retrieved from  http://people.virginia.edu/~bb2uz/public/7040%20Research/cognitive/video%20games%20why%20and%20how.pdf

Hancock, J, (2012). Who wants to play video games? [image] Retrieved from http://photos.jdhancock.com/photo/2012-06-25-064009-who-wants-to-play-video-games.html

McKay, R. (2013).  Paying to learn: Can gaming transform education?. Retrieved from https://ed.stanford.edu/news/playing-learn-can-gaming-transform-education

Sploder.(nd) Sploder [image]. Retrieved from http://www.sploder.com/

WSJDigitalNEtwork. (203,Octobe 9). Can games help improve education? [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8HEl_OgR58

 

 

 

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Scratch -Digital fluency – Week 6

Having the ability to utilise technologies with confidence in order to accomplish a set out goal means that one is digitally fluent. It is imperative for teachers to encourage and support the development of digital fluency as this lays the foundation for the students in becoming digital learners who are able to continually build and develop on the skills they have already learned.

scratch1

There are endless programs available that can be introduced into the classroom and used to develop childrens’ digital fluency, and one such program is Scratch. Scratch is visual, media manipulating program for beginners, where users can learn and have fun creating their very own animation. By utilising this fun and motivating program in the classroom, students will have the opportunity to learn, either  independently or collaboratively, in an informal context by developing new technological skills (Maloney, Peppler, Kafai, Resnick and Rusk, 2008). Once the student has completed their animation, they are then able to share their creation publicly or with limitation to those in their classroom.

In this program, the user also has the opportunity to draw their own pictures, which can then be added to the project/animation. Below is an example of a scratch animation which I have created and shared publicly.

Scratch Animation

 

References

Howell, J. (2012). Teaching with ICT: Digital pedagogies for collaboration & creativity. South Melbourne, VIC: Oxford University
Press.

Maloney, J., Peppler, K., Kafai, Y., Resnick, M., Rusk, N. (2008). Programming by choice: urban youth learning programming with scratch [PDF File]. ACM SIGCSE Bulletin, 40 (1), 367-371. Retrieved from http://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED521157.pdf.

Scratch. (nd) Scratch [image]. Retrieved from http://scratch.mit.edu/

 

 

Pinterest – Week 5

PINTERST

So, what is Pinterest? Pinterest is like a smorgasbord of information, ideas, activities and much more, where users are able to collect, sort and share their interests via their own pinboard. A pinboard is an innovative way of keeping a record of almost anything and everything in one easily accessible place. Users have the option to view other users’ pinboards where they can then “pin” anything they find interesting to their own board.

Pinterest would be a great tool to transfer into the classroom. The teacher could set the topic or theme or have the children create their own pinboard around their own interests. They could also work collaboratively in groups, then share their pinboards with other groups in the class. They could also aide the teacher in presenting information to the students, where they  then, if possible, have the option of easily accessing this information from outside of school.

PINBOARD

Below is an example of a pinboard which has been created to capture different types of digital information that we encounter. The pinboard presents information and ideas that are aimed at students and teachers regarding applications and programs that could be useful in an educational environment.

Please click the pinterest icon to view pinboard

Click me

References

 

Cox, K. (nd) Pinterest [image] Retrieved from http://www.prekinders.com/pinterest-for-teachers/

Goodrich, R. (2013). What is pinterest? Retrieved from http://www.technewsdaily.com/16607-what-is-pinterest.html

Pinterest. (2014). Pinterest Images [image]. Retrieved from http://Pinterest.com

The drum (nd). Pinboard [image] Retrived from http://www.thedrum.com/opinion/2012/03/05/what-influence-pinterest-model-likely-have-other-social-media-platforms

Infographic – Digital Divide week 4

Digital Divide can be described as the inequality between people, communities and countries and their accessibility to digital technologies (Howell, 2012).

An assessment on the abilities of students’ Information and Communication Technology (ICT) literacies made in 2008 found that students from lower socio-economic backgrounds underperformed in comparison to students from a high socio-economic backgrounds (Howell, 2012). It is clear that students are disadvantaged due to their inaccessibility to digital technologies and measures need to be taken to ensure equality in accessibility to digital technologies.

I have created an infographic as a simple explanation to the meaning of what a digital divide is.  The information is basic, however, it is supported with explanatory pictures which help give insight and better understanding to its meaning. There is an emphasis on how the digital divide affects Australians who come from a low socio-economic background, and that on a larger scale there is a digital divide between developing countries and already developed countries. The pictures provide an understanding of how the digital divide also affects other parts of the world.

4d529e09bb965a187df6a679861494e8ee06a4d3_original

When comparing this digital divide infographic with others that are presenting the same topic, the similarities found are generally how pictures presenting both ends of the digital divide spectrums were used to make it visually clear about what the digital divide is and how it affects people. Differences are that some have relied more on getting the point across using images, whereas this infographic is more of a balance between text and image.

References

Buch-Larsen, M. (2014). Digital Divide [image] retrieved from https://magic.piktochart.com/output/1667323-melindas-infographic-copy

Howell, J. (2012). Teaching with ICT:Digital Pedagogies for Collaboration and Creativity. South Melbourne, VIC: Oxford University Press.

 

Identity theft and Scammers – Week 3

Identity theft usually occurs for the purpose of economic gain for criminals. It happens  when we have accidently received programs which have allowed hackers/scammers access to our phones or computers which have our personal and sensitive information on them. It can also occur when we have simply made so much personal information available to the public through programs, websites and applications, such as facebook, twitter, pinterest, or ones that we have unsuspectingly joined with the click of one button. Identity theft can be avoided by being more conscious about the information we are making freely available to the public. Scammers are also people that we need to be aware of and typically scammers are usually also looking to gain financially. Scammers are people who come up with sometimes very elaborate stories to gain your pity or trust and once this has occurred they will usually persuade you into doing pretty much whatever they want you to. Scammers are usually on the lookout for victims through social media websites, and emailing seems to also be a popular method of reeling in unsuspecting victims. To avoid becoming a victim of scammers and identity thieves online, it’s important to be aware of the information that you are making easily available on the web and to also be wary about suspect emails or other information that you are receiving.


Relaying the message to students about scammers and identity theft is crucial in ensuring online safety and awareness. There are endless forms of information which can be used to help get these messages across and keep ourselves and our students safe.

 

References

Federal trade commision. (2014). Identity theft. Retrieved from http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/features/feature-0014-identity-theft

Security first insurance company.(2012). Prevent identity theft with these top 5 tips. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VyNRYaPD8vA