TED presenter Jane McGonigal posits that game play can hold the answers to some of the world’s largest issues.
What I love about this is that her talk combines a few things that I think are vital when looking at education in the 21st Century. Yes, people like games like WOW but I don’t think we have to turn schools into games in order to be successful instructors. The things that WOW and school should have in common (but DON’T) are the the four things that McGonigal shows that massively multiplayer games teach really well: Optimism, Socialization, Fulfilling Engagement, and Epic Meaning. Schools ought to be one of the places that people learn to become “Super-empowered hopeful individuals” rather than meaningless hamster cages (which, sadly, many schools can claim to be).
I am going to try this game, Evoke. I am going to share it with my students and see if they want to play. You can see how I am doing here. I think it could be a really cool opportunity to deepen our discussions of current events in our class. It is also the first really functional use I’ve seen of Transmedia Narrative construction with a deeply positive social purpose.