At the Handheld Learning conference in London last week I listened to Steven Heppell's keynote. Very interesting and thought provoking yet again. He played a clip of him extolling the virtues of computer games and learning. Again, he talked about what he had observed when watching children/learners play computer games:
- a range of problem solving techniques spontaneously and implicitly occurring
- how these contexts for learning extended and challenged learners
- how self-esteem was enhanced when learners achieved in the game
The very interesting thing about this part of his talk was when he revealed that the clip was from 1991!
He then went on to show a number of examples from the Be Very Afraid site. This is something to see in terms of what is happening with new technologies, including games, now! Take a look at these two P.5/6 girls talking about their technology project. Look at how confident they are in terms of the vocabulary they use. Digital Natives right enough!
Newsweek has just published an article that talks about how learners can be encouraged to problem solve, to collaborate, to be challenged by computer games contexts and how their self-esteem can be enhanced. Is it a case of, yeah we already know this or is the momentum gathering pace and power? I tend to think it's the second of the two. The steady drip drip of the games in education lobby is making inroads into what is and what will happen in schools...