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Games And Education

For many people, computer games are just fun pure entertainment. However, in recent years, their positive impact on children and adolescents has begun to be noticed. Games can be used as a form of education, thanks to which you can combine business with pleasure. So what does it look like?

The intersection of gaming and education: how games can be used to teach and learn

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Learning languages

Let’s go back 30 years. You are a young boy or girl who has his own computer or console – perhaps the first PlayStation. This is a time when there are not many games in Polish yet. So you’ll have to deal with the games in English somehow. If it is a simple game, then you have no problem completing the tasks in the game and reaching the next level.

However, when there are tasks in the game where you have instructions in English, then you reach for the dictionary. You start explaining it word by word until you finally understand what you have to do in the game. For many people who are now 30-40 years old, this is what the first games looked like, as well as additional learning English.

So it was easy to learn words that we didn’t learn in school. We increased our vocabulary, which turned out to be very helpful for many in the future. Today, most games are translated into different languages, but it does not change the fact that once for a large group of players, video games were an opportunity to learn languages better. Just like for many people, online casinos are an opportunity to get to know gambling like this site

A game recommended for students

In 2014, 11-bit studios – a company from Poland, launched its game called This War of Mine. It immediately became a huge international success. The game has received very high ratings from players and critics and also has received many prestigious awards. This is a war game. However, this is not another Call of Duty, where we kill a lot of enemies, or strategy games, where we lead troops on the map. This is probably the first game in history where we follow the war from the perspective of civilians.

Although we do not have a country and place where the game takes place, the plot was modelled on the siege of Sarajevo. As a reminder, it lasted almost 4 years and contributed to the death of over 5,000 innocent residents. In the game, we lead a group of 3-4 residents who move into a destroyed house. Our task will be to survive during the war. We have to provide living conditions for the heroes, take care of water and food, and mental conditions. It’s going to get harder every day. Supplies are running out, we must go out at night to find them. During the game, we have to make moral decisions:

  • 1 – will we steal someone’s food?

  • 2 – will we kill the thugs to take their supplies?

  • 4 – will we give medicines to the mother of sick children?

  • 4 – will we accept an extra person?

  • 5 – will we sacrifice one hero for another?

This War of Mine is a game that shows what war really looks like. It teaches that surviving in wartime is not that easy and that many of our decisions will affect others.

This also made this title the first in the history of Polish education to offer educational material in the form of a video game. The Ministry of Education encourages teachers to include it in the didactic process of secondary school students.

For years, we have had a lot of historical games, thanks to which you can learn a lot about important events in the history of specific countries or the world. Even more than 20 years ago, the Age of Empires contained a lot of information about historical periods, rulers and civilizations. You can learn a lot about history by playing games like this.

Games for children with autism or other problems

For several years, games specially created for children with various disorders have been introduced to smartphones, consoles and computers. A great example of this is the Polish company DrOmnibus, which has created tools to support behavioural therapy for children with behavioural or developmental disorders.

It made an application containing 36 different games developing the skills of a preschool child. These are simple and developing games that are adapted to specific problems of children. There are more and more such companies and applications which show that video games can be used in the education and therapy of children. Stuart Duncan, many years ago, created a dedicated server for kids playing Minecraft. Autocraft is a Minecraft virtual world designed for autistic children and their parents. To date, it has helped hundreds of autistic children learn to communicate and socialize and significantly improve their health. Today, many normal games are used in therapy because they contain elements that are particularly useful for children with problems.

Games and their non-obvious help

As we mentioned, computer games are not always specially created for specific groups – students and children with disorders. It is possible to distinguish such categories that teach something even to the smallest extent.

Historical games Such games show how the world used to look like, what important things happened, who ruled and what countries and civilizations were like.
Educational games These are games created specifically for learning. Together with fun, they can teach children about the world, history, and various sciences.
Survival games Such games show what life on a desert island can look like, how difficult it is to get food and what problems you have to face.
Online games There are games such as Minecraft, Animal Crossing and Roblox that teach children cooperation, affect better contact with other people and break down certain barriers.

In our article, we could give many more examples of games that can be used to teach and learn. Today, the world of video games has changed significantly, and you can perfectly combine fun with learning and therapy. You have to look at games as something that can develop, not just take time.

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