Rosie’s New Pet

Leaving an elementary school one afternoon, we poked our heads into a classroom and observed a teacher arranging the computer area of her classroom in preparation for a scheduled parent–teacher conference.

“Margaret, you think of every last detail,” we remarked.

“If that were true,” she replied, “I would have figured out how to give everyone the

opportunity to use these computers more. I am given so much material to teach for the tests, I never have the time to find the software and games that the kids will really enjoy.”

After leaving Margaret, we saw the parents, a family we knew, who were coming to the family conference. Inquiring about the family, the father promptly told us of his daughter’s current fascination with her new online digital pet.

“We had been to several stores to find this creature because it is really hard to find and Rosie has in her mind that if she gets it, then she can build her online pet family. It is one of those limited-release toys that come with a special story and a registration number that is tied to an online video game.”

“It is really interesting what the animals do,”Rosie’s father continued, “because when you buy one of them you are allowed to play a game with the animal. The animal’s collar has a special ID tag that you use within the world of other special creatures. Since playing in the game, Rosie has bought a house for her pets, food, and she even has a virtual hot tub! Now if only I could get her to manage her homework and her real live pets like she manages this virtual world.”

Wk 6 eActivity

·        Go to the neo K-12 Website, located at http://www.neok12.com/, to review educational video games. Review two (2) video games of your choice. Be prepared to discuss.

·        Review the National Educational Technology Standards for Students (NETS-S) located at http://www.kelloggllc.com/tpc/nets.pdf. Be prepared to discuss.

Discussion 1

“Educational Software” Please respond to the following:

·        Discuss three (3) software applications that you have utilized in a K-12, higher education or business setting. Determine the purpose for the software being used for this setting, and evaluate the effectiveness of the software application based on the target population. Provide specific examples for your rationale.

From the first e-Activity, evaluate the characteristics of your chosen games using the criteria in Table 7.3 in the text. Suggest an e-Learning strategy for each game that you believe would enhance students’ levels of thinking when they play the designated games. Provide specific examples of the recommended strategy in use to support your rationale.

TABLE 7.3 Rubric for Evaluating Higher Order Thinking in Video Games

Characteristics

Yes/No (1/0)

Requires users to assume a role in the game rather than simply play.

Offers meaningful interaction such as dialogue with NPCs (characters in the game).

Has a storyline.

Has a complex storyline with characters users care about.

Offers simple puzzles.

Has complex puzzles requiring effort to solve.

Uses three-dimensional graphics.

Allows multiple views or camera pans and the ability to zoom in and out.

Allows different ways to complete the game.

Simulates complex processes requiring adjustment of variables by users to obtain desired results (adjusting variables leads to different results).

Allows interactions through use of avatars (an online identity adopted by the game player).

Uses lifelike avatars.

Requires interaction with virtual elements within the game.

Requires knowledge of game elements beyond mouse prompts and number entry (e.g., combining elements to create new tools, understanding complex jargon).

Requires gathering of information in order to complete.

Requires synthesis of knowledge in order to complete or successfully engage elements in the game.

Effectively replicates real-world environment.

NPCs display AI (artificial intelligence) characteristics.

NPCs display effective use of AI resulting in dynamic experiences for the user.

Offers replay abilities with varying results.

Total Score

Source: “Assessing Higher Order Thinking in Video Games” by John W. Rice, Journal of Technology and Teacher Education, 15(1), p. 93. Copyright 2007 by the Association for the Advancement of omputing in Education (AACE). (www.aace.org) Reprinted with permission.

 

Discussion 2

 

“Digital Games for Learning” Please respond to the following:

·        From the case study, propose two (2) ways that Margaret, the teacher, can use digital games in the classroom. Suggest one (1) digital game from the neo K-12 games that you reviewed that you believe provides the greatest benefit for Margaret. Provide a rationale for your recommendation.

·        * From the second e-Activity, select one (1) NET-S standard not used by another of your classmates, and suggest two (2) approaches for using digital learning games in the classroom in order to meet the selected NETS-S standard for students. Provide specific examples of such use of games in the classroom from your personal experience to support your rationale.Bottom of Form