The extent to which video games are the future of education remains to be seen and nearly half of the teachers believe games have the ability to motivate struggling and special education students. Meanwhile, game developers are working to align some educational games to common educational standards, while educators and the video game makers are seeing benefits in using games in a classroom context, despite concerns from administrators.
This could be the golden age of educational video games because some educators are beginning to see it as valuable high-tech teaching tools but little is known about their concrete impact on learning. Of-course, video games are playing an increasing role in school curricula as teachers seek to deliver core lessons such as math and reading – not to mention new skills such as computer programming in a format that holds their students’ interests. It is the way of the future and a tool that allows students to take a more active role in learning as they develop the technology skills they need to succeed throughout their academic and professional careers. However, games are a powerful learning tool when combined with other exploratory, hands-on activities and ongoing instruction from a teacher acting more as a coach than a lecturer.
If educational video games are well executed, they can provide a strong framework for inquiry and project-based learning and games are also uniquely suited to fostering the skills necessary for navigating a complex, interconnected, rapidly changing 21st century. Beyond teaching, video games can also offer useful information about how well a child is learning and can even provide helpful visual displays of that information. Games are, for better or worse, the gateway for most students into computer programming, look at the STEM opportunities there and roll with it, many teachers use game to teach physics as gaming uses so many functions and with such, provides an avenue for any games inherently educational in their own right.
Perhaps the biggest impact of video games will be on students who have not responded as well to traditional teaching methods. Video games are the bread and butter of children’s entertainment and a pastime that encourages teamwork, social skills, and depending on the genre, a wealth of knowledge too. So education should be as effective as possible at teaching, guiding, and nurturing young people, even if that means changing the system.
It is passion that drives you to learn and play, and it keeps pinging your brain in different ways and the same thing that you’re going to see, the passion teachers have, for kids to learn which is really critical, because once you present the information in a way that kids are going to grab onto it and want to learn; forget it, you’re going to be working together the entire time. It easily provides game developers crucial feedback as an educator through gaming services like Steam.
By educating through accessible, entertaining mediums and prioritizing teaching techniques that actually work, video game designers and educators alike can and will find unimaginable success in teaching future and current generations.