How can English class be more interesting? How can children continue to be actively involved? How to achieve the highest classroom efficiency in a happy and relaxed atmosphere? I believe many teachers have similar questions and have made many positive attempts. Today, let's talk about a concept together. By understanding this concept, we can better improve the efficiency of class, make learning more interesting and greatly enhance children's interest in learning English. The concept is Gamification.
"Game-Based Methods and Strategies for Training and Education, defines it as the use of game-based mechanics, aesthetics and game thinking to engage people, motivate action, promote learning and solve problems."
- Karl Kapp
The application of gamification teaching strategy is to use the mechanism of games to stimulate children's motivation, so as to achieve the purpose of helping students participate in class, enjoy class and improve learning efficiency. In a gamified classroom, we can use two teaching strategies - using game itself, and using game mechanics.
Using game itself is a very simple but effective strategy. For example, we can use game forms such as matchmaking, solving puzzles, collecting cards, adventure activities, collecting game points and role playing to design interesting activities in combination with classroom content to help students increase their interest and enthusiasm for learning. Here are some examples of English game design that teachers often use in the classroom:
Write a question/word on each stick, and let students randomly select one. If they can answer correctly, they will keep the stick and get 1 point. If they draw a stick with "Kaboom" on it, all the points will be lost, and the stick will be taken back by teacher and the whole game will restart. Score settings can be adjusted according to subject knowledge.
Teacher gives students several question cards, and the students pick them randomly. After picking the cards, they answer the questions. After answering the questions, the blind box will be activated, which includes scores, bombs, instructions and thieves. Students may get points or some instructions. If they get bombs, they need to hide in the safe area. When thieves come out, their scores will be stolen.
Teacher hide some question and answer cards in advance in the classroom, and students need to quickly find the card within the given time, and match correct answers with the question.
In a classic board game, teacher prepares the board, questions and a large dice in advance, and student rolls the dice to move forward, answer questions or complete tasks. Board game has uncertainty, and it brings lots of fun to students.
Students need to control Pac-Man to find the correct answer as soon as possible. There will be a lot of monsters on the way, so they need to be quick and keep the Pac-Man safe.
6. Can you find the difference?
There are two similar pictures on the board, and students need to find the small differences and use English to describe it. Students try their best to speak English as much as possible.
The use of teaching scenarios with game features is a learning method that children really enjoy. Similar to project-based learning, the learning content is related to children's life experience, so that children can think about real problems from the perspective of subject knowledge and then use knowledge to solve them. Adding game mechanics can make projects full of fun. Students need to "fight monsters and upgrade" in order to complete the ultimate task. Gamification plays an important role in stimulating students' interest in learning and improving teaching efficiency.
For example, in English class, teacher can design a virtual scenario - the earth is about to be attacked by aliens, and students need to answer questions to complete tasks and unlock secret weapons to protect our earth.
For another example, in a writing class, students learned how to write persuasive article to make their views more convincing. Teacher suggested that children need to complete the writing of each small sentence and small paragraph in order to score points. When the points reach the goal, they can write to the principal to make their suggestions for the school! Inspired by the game mechanism, students turned their learning into games and integrated games into their learning. Classroom efficiency was greatly improved, and children's internal motivation became the driving force behind their learning.
Using game mechanics to manage classroom is also an effective strategy. For example, teachers can use some positive incentives, such as student certificates, medals, group points, prize exchange activities, etc. The ultimate effect of all gamified classroom is to enhance student’s motivation. When motivation is strong, even if they encounter great challenges, they will try their best to overcome it! In this way, learning happens easily and happily.