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April 28, 2013


John Johnston

Hi Derek,
Is is perhaps that pupils just don't worry about failing, when they fail to do something in minecraft they jump to YouTube and fix it. If they didn't fail they would not know what they didn't know and would not learn new stuff.
Personally I think I am in the zone when I am constantly making micro-fails that I can either correct myself with a bit of thought or with a quick google(perhaps it is age or the sphere of my learning put I'll take text of video any day).
You are probably right in thinking that failure is not the best word here, failure implies a car crash rather than a flat tyre.
Mind you my ventures into Minecraft have been fails, as I am never going to take the time to watch enough videos;)

Walter Patterson

Christian Heinrich, chairman of the Boarding Schools' Association
"Make mistakes while the consequences can be managed and the lessons learned"
Seems a better way to put it!



I don't feel equipped to sufficiently articulate the concept of 'fail'... the interesting thing to me is that, regardless of what some kids think about 'not winning' at computer games, they keep going back.
That's not always the case with 'classes' (school, swimming, music). When children (or adults for that matter) feel a 'failure' it's often simply too traumatic to go back and try again.

So, you're right to say we need to change the perception of what failure means although in video games I would argue that taking away failure means there's no winning either.

I love that my kids collaborate so well on something like MineCraft and the Lego games... but they still retain that competitive edge. We have Toy Story III on the PS3 and it's a great mix of competition and collaboration.
The great thing though is that they can teach me. They are my Minecraft wiki - they explore the new features that I ignore ("...have you not updated yet dad?!") and show me how great they are.

Great post though Derek :)

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