This afternoon attended the 1st session of the IVE workshop. Though have little idea what IVEs are and what it really offers (in the educational context), am somewhat excited - before and during the workshop :D Hm... not so much of a fear factor anyway... unlike the eLearning session.
Spend a fair bit of playing the game... perhaps I started with the right footing - the easiest one first - Food Force. (http://www.food-force.com/)
- For a start, it's not easy to play - because there wasn't any background or 'objective' mentioned in the handout.
- OK, one 'guy' was talking to give the background - but, not patient enough to listen through before jumping into the game!
- There are 6 missions - seem to be sequential, though at the end of each mission, the links to the 6 missions are displayed together with the 'results' of that mission.
- Again, curriculum link from each activity was not clear.
- Teaching Idea that I could think of is, National Education and Character Education - in particular, I think the NE message, "No one owes Singapore a living". In the last mission (#6), the player will start to build a village, having to take into consideration which sector (eg. farming, education, health care) will receive more support (some kind of balancing act) such that by the end of 10 years, the village would be able to survive on its own, and not to depend on the help rendered by UN. Of course, there are other things and learning points that would be valuable to our students - when they compare and reflect on the 2 different 'worlds'.
The other game introduced is "Darfur is Dying" (http://www.darfurisdying.com/) - which is a springoff from Food Force. This online game is a "Refugee Game".
- Did not play this during the workshop, but spent about 20 minutes
- The website provides some background info of this region call Darfur (well, it's something new to me!) though I have heard of Sudan!
- It started off with identifying someone to get water and this person has to avoid the militiamen. Notice that it's really an 'action' activity - run and run and run! Doubt can link to any subject learning outcome directly (Oops! it requires a fair bit of creativity!).
- More info can be found at http://www.food-force.com/index.php/blog/students-new-game; http://www.darfurisdying.com/background.html