Teaching social studies with videogames


I’m certainly not a gamer myself, but I see the logic in using video games to teach some students. This article found here. Teachthought looks very interesting. If you have tried this in your class please let me know. I am sharing the article here:

Using Civilization VI To Teach Social Studies

In Exactly How To Teach With Video Games In The Classroom, I provided a variety of ways to teach with video games, from analyzing them on paper to watching them being played, to playing them in the classroom, to assigning them to be played at home and doing the ‘work’ in the classroom in a flipped classroom approach.

Every character, unit, and building in Civilization is taken directly from history. These range from leaders like Winston Churchill (with Charismatic and Protective attributes) and Suleiman (Philosophical and Imperialistic) to units like the Roman Praetorian (extremely proficient swordsmen) and Russian Cossacks (cavalry with an attack bonus against mounted units). These traits are quite flavorful and very relevant to gameplay: each unique unit, if utilized correctly, will be dominant in their era of relevance. Compared to a game like Oregon Trail, in which dysentery functions exactly the same as typhoid (a randomly occurring illness that, if left untreated, leads to death), Civilization scores very high for having units whose function matches their flavor.

Educational Value — A

Civilization excels here. It brings historical characters to life in a fantastically engaging fashion that a dusty old textbook never could. It has inspired plenty of young historians and inclined many more to read further on the exploits of figures like Charlemagne and Saladin. You couldn’t ask for more educational value from a game.

Academic Value — C+

There is a lot of historical knowledge to be learned from Civilization, but it would be unwise to mistake that knowledge for deep historical insight. Again, despite the game’s factual resplendence, it loses points for its misrepresentation of historical cause and effect. Source: EdSurge News. 

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