Deakin University

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Making digital games in school to promote literacy and learning

conference contribution
posted on 2014-11-27, 00:00 authored by Joanne O'MaraJoanne O'Mara
This paper investigates some of the findings from the digital game-making strand of the ARC project, Serious Play: Using digital games in school to promote literacy and learning in the twenty-first century (Beavis et al. 2012-14). While most students in our project are highly engaged in playing games out of school, fewer of them make their own games. This strand of the project investigates cases of school students making their own digital games in school. It considers how game making might be placed in different school environments and how teachers and students approach game making in these different contexts. While much of the game making in school research focuses on the programing outcomes from the process (see for instance the outstanding work from MIT and research such as Wilson et al. 2012), this research has a more literacy, literary studies focus on the outcomes from making the games. The paper draws on some of the Victorian case studies. The game-making in each case has been designed as a curriculum unit by the teachers, with different outcomes in mind. Nevertheless, all of them have had interesting literacy learning outcomes, whether that was the intent of the unit or not. The range of cases includes: creating text-based digital games in middle primary school, creating games in a simulated games development company environment in middle primary school, game production for a competition in upper primary school, and game-making and critique in middle secondary school. The paper considers the ways in which these different contexts for the curriculum choice of making games shapes the approach to games making. The paper then considers the literacy learning outcomes from each project, linking these to the games as text, games as action model (Beavis and Apperley, 2012) and game-making approaches developed in previous research. Whilst literacy was not the focus of all of these activities, all of them had significant outcomes for literacy and these will be mapped and discussed. References Apperley, T. and Beavis, C. 2013. A model for critical games literacy. E-learning and Digital Media. 10 (1) 1-12 Wilson, A., Hainey, T., and Connolly, T. January 2012. Evaluation of Computer Games Developed by Primary School Children to Gauge Understanding of Programming Concepts. Proceeds of the European Conference on Games Based Learning 2012.



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EN.1 Other conference paper

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AARE-NZARE 2014 : Speaking Back Through Research : Proceedings of the 2014 Conference of the Australian Association for Research in Education and the New Zealand Association for Research in Education


Australian Association for Research in Education

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