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Jarmo Siira: On a game-based learning course in Greece

13/04/2018
by Anna Kirstinä
Language: EN
Document available also in: FI SV

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The Erasmus+ course on gamification was organised between March 12–16th 2017 in Piraeus, Greece. As an enthusiast of games and a occasional adult educator, I was excited to see what the course had to offer.

The IDEC training centre has a history of organising different courses on adult education. The company's office in Piraeus is easily accessible and is located in an area little more quiet than Athens, which is just close by. The course's 11 attendees came from all around the EU. The majority of them had elementary school backgrounds, so their main focus was on teaching children. My students and those of three other participants are mainly adults. The course material and experiments were mainly aimed for children's education, but we could utilise the same methods with minor variations. After all, with games, even adults are given the permission to act a little childish.

Our course had an interesting beginning with a teacher whose background was in the theater world. We started going through ideas and concepts of games in teaching, pedagogical theories and learning goals. A couple of lessons were given on role-playing, and of course some themes to play out ourselves. Further on, we got to design simple games and try out some AR technology on the course.

In retrospect, topics specified for the education of children on the course were not the most useful for me. However, what I mainly gained from and got out of the course was the general theory of game-based learning. Also the discussions and sharing experiences with other attendees were very valuable for me. Games truly are an immersive world even when put into the context of learning.

 

Jarmo Siira

Sivis Study Centre


Photo: pxhere.com

 

This article is part of a series of articles about learning experiences in the field of adult education in an European context. Our ERASMUS+ KA1 project is called “European Educational Know-how Supporting Civil Society”.

 

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  • Zane Katrīne Kļaviņa's picture
    Considering how much children (and even adults) love to play games, I really think it's a shame that games aren't implemented more in our education systems. Learning history through trivia games, learning languages through memory games, learning geometry through building block games could be much more fun and easy for the children who struggle with lectures and books. I'm quite sad about the typical view of standard teachers in my city, that school should be a serious place - the result is that learning is boring and for many - a hard struggle. If we try, we can remember our childhood, where we learned about the world by playing outside, running around together, exploring in nature, and learning was natural, fun and automatic. Why couldn't it be more like that in schools as well? I would be happy to learn more about or access some resources that you were introduced to in your exchange training. Thank you for sharing your experience!
  • Antonella Giles's picture

    Gamification in Education is indeed one of the ways to increase students’ motivation.  The engagement of young people during online gaming is impressive.  So why not replicate the scenario in the education sector.  Many educators have tested this method by using levels, grades and badges in their assignments thus encouraging their students to push harder and progress further.  As a result, their learning is more engaging.  Of course, this is easier said than done but courses such as the one you have written about could help educators to embrace this methodology.