You are on page 1of 2
GAMIFYING THE CLASSROOM USING GAMIFICATION TO ENHANCE LEARNING OUTCOMES by daniel millsap Gamification is a

GAMIFYING THE CLASSROOM

USING GAMIFICATION TO ENHANCE LEARNING OUTCOMES

by

daniel millsap

Gamification is a fun and easy way to

A

useful method of engaging their

ones who could not solve a ques-

improve your classroom. You don’t need fancy hardware or software to

imagination was to turn the lesson into a game. The chalkboard was

tion posed in the English language.

use Gamification in your lessons; you need only your imagination and whatever else you find laying around.

used as a map and the magnets were used to represent the relative posi- tion of each team as they competed

I used several criteria when deciding when to move a magnet forward. If one group was better behaved than

in

a race from one end of the board

the other, then that group had their

In my 1st grade English as a second

to

the other. To make the journey

magnet advanced while the other

language classroom, I found that students were better able to recall

more interesting, hungry monsters and dense jungles were incorpo-

group’s magnet stayed in place. The team that had their magnet advanced

material that had been taught us-

rated as obstacles the students had

was thus rewarded and eager to con-

ing a story. Using a story allowed

to bypass. When students within

tinue their good behavior while the

students to use more of their sens-

a group were engaged and coop-

team that did not advance was mo-

es while learning which, in turn, helped them to solidify the knowl- edge into their long-term memories.

erative, their magnet was advanced and if they were naughty, the mon- ster was always ready to eat the

tivated to behave as well or at least try to improve their performance. Along the board, I pinned up pic-

tures to use as waypoints along the board. For example, the monster de- picted in

tures to use as waypoints along the board. For example, the monster de- picted in the picture was fond of eat- ing students who did not remember certain English words. In order to safely bypass the monster students would have to go home and study diligently so that the next day they would be quick to recall those Eng- lish words. The jungle could rep- resent a place where teams got lost and the only way to get out was to be the quickest to open to a certain page number or to be the team with the students with the best posture.

Important considerations were whether a team could move both backward and forward or only forward. I found that moving a magnet backwards at times caused group members to act aggressively towards individual students who were perceived to be the cause of

the backward movement. The re- inforcement schedule also had to be tweaked depending on the class, time of day, etc. so that motivation remained at a constantly high level.

It was also important that each team progressed somewhat equally across the board. This maintained the ten- sion required to prolong student ef- fort. If one team was so far ahead that the other team had no chance of winning, the members of the losing team would give up and the purpose of the game would be lost.

When a team won the game, their performance was celebrated with a loud cheer and at times, I found it useful to allow both teams to cross the finish line at the same time so that everyone was happy and cheerful.

The outcome of using Gamifica- tion in the classroom was that students were highly engaged in learning English and were self- motivated to behave and co- operate with other students.

In conclusion, you don’t have to wait until the year 2030 to use Gamifi- cation in the classroom. Armed with only your imagination, you will find that amazing things can take place in the classroom and your students will thank you for it. Daniel Millsap