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Mehlville Teacher Earns $15,000 to Develop Instructional Video Game

The game will be used to teach a Statistics class in the fall.

One class of students will try learning through a video game that was developed by their own teacher, Corey Arbini.

Arbini, who earned a $15,000 grant from the Innovative Technology Education Fund, will turn his classroom into a computer lab and teach through the game.

The yearlong game is similar to the board game Risk. Students must complete all 40 level to obtain an A. Starting at zero, or F, if a student fails a level, they can try again until passing.

The game incorporates Google maps, online documents and requires students to make presentations to their classmates.

“Many of today’s high school students have grown up playing some sort of video game. New research shows designing a course to mimic the design of role-playing games leads to a fun, interactive environment that boosts student learning, motivation and engagement,” Arbini said in a district release. The teacher developed the concept based on a suggestion from Oakville High School Statistics teacher John Souris.

Students will work together, forming armies to conquer countries.

“This format spreads out the motivation through the entire semester, so students have to push themselves the whole way,” Arbini said.

At the end of the 2012-2013 school year, the teacher will evaluate the success of the video game and possibly expand it to more Statistics classes. 

Ed Taylor June 18, 2012 at 01:01 PM
Think it's a weird idea? Consider people who play video games -- no matter how difficult it is, they keep going back until they master it, and the "directions" are part of the game. For analysis, go to Gee, James Paul. What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy. New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2003. Kudos, Corey (and inspiration John)!
Tom Diehl June 18, 2012 at 04:41 PM
Not weird at all. If it holds the kids' interest, they will feel comfortable with the technology and probably try to mater it quicker than they would a traditional textbook.

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