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Three Awesome Educational Games Hiding in Plain Sight

Three Awesome Educational Games Hiding in Plain Sight
By Tanner Higgin, Graphite When I was in school, game-based learning was a novelty. This was the era of Math Blaster!, Lemonade Stand and Oregon Trail, when game-based learning meant digitized practice problems or clunky, paper-thin simulations. Still, my classmates and I liked these games. For many of us, this was the only exposure we got to video games outside of arcades. But when my family got a computer, something changed. Game-based learning, and the developers who identify with it today, have come a long way since then and gotten much closer to closing the gap. Here are just a few favorites that reviewed well on Graphite this year: Elegy for a Dead World Writing can feel like a chore in school when it’s only ever going to be read by a teacher and maybe a classmate. Never Alone There’s little debate that games have not represented indigenous cultures well. Valiant Hearts My intention here isn’t to argue that games have learning value.

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What does it mean to have your whole middle-school curriculum designed around games? NEW YORK — One morning, just before classes at New York City’s Quest to Learn Middle School broke for lunch, Etai Kurtzman found himself transformed into a lemon tree. It was a warm day in late April, and his chatty sixth-grade class had been corralled from a narrow hallway into a classroom at the end of a short hall. Etai, tall and lanky, lugged a gray backpack to a desk that had been pushed up against a wall. Each student had been cast for a role-playing game either as a honeybee sent out from the hive or as a plant. In a flurry of organized chaos, the students simulated the pollination process: student honey bees, wearing pipe-cleaner antennae, approached classmates pretending to be plants and received small, colored building blocks.

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