In Module 4, I was excited to look through the different gaming resources that could be available for educational purposes. The various resources were very clear in examples of programs that could be used in education. I think that I could utilize Second Life in some of my visual art classes to allow students to role play in a safe environment. For example, in my video production class, I could have students go on an actual film set in Second Life and each take roles on the production crew. These are all exciting ideas because students can digitally interact with the information rather than just reading about it. I like how gaming could create a platform for students with various learning styles. Marc Prensky’s (2001) article, “Fun, Play and Games: What Makes Games So Engaging?” was also helpful to me. In this article Prensky takes apart gaming and explains how the characteristics of digital games are also practices that we use in the classroom (p. 30-31). The connection between gaming and education is clear, but I think that it also comes with its own set of challenges.
I think that the effects of gaming in education can make a positive impact in the classroom, but I also think that this is a new frontier with space to explore. I hoped to see a bit more resources that speak about the challenges that gaming in the classroom creates. In this module, all of the exciting aspects of gaming were discussed but I would like to be cautious moving forward. We were asked to think about the drawbacks that gaming in education might have, and I would like to think about how to overcome these challenges. I continue to reflect on the following questions: How would digital communication affect face-to-face communication? Does my school have enough resources to support gaming in the classroom? How do I make sure the students are staying on track if they are working in an expansive game that has many different places to explore? These are questions that I will continue to think through as I explore the use of gaming in my visual art classes. After going through the resources in this module, I feel that the good outweighs the bad when exploring the use of gaming in education.