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Tips to use digital games in class

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Tips to start using digital games in classroom

What can go wrong?  (It does not necessarily mean it has to)

Apart from technical problems, you should be prepared to have students who will perhaps not like the idea of playing, won’t like the game you have chosen first or won’t take it seriously. Here are a couple of tips to avoid some problems.

Before the lesson:

  1. Don’t choose a game you don’t personally like.
  2. Always look for the "walkthrough" or "cheat" of the game you want to use (Google) and read or watch it first.
  3. Prepare thoroughly, play the game as many times as you need to be confident with it. Remember that you can use one game with different levels.
  4. Start with a short game and see how it goes before you invest more time.
  5. Ask for feedback in class. Did students like the game? What kind of games would they like to play?
  6. Students will accept the games easier if you introduce them to review what they have already learned.

In classroom:

  1. Explain what the group is going to do. First show the game on a big screen and show the tools students can use with it (apps. dictionary, walkthrough)
  2. Let the group build teams, make suggestions but don’t be surprised if they chose another team. Everyone has to work, so the team should not be too big.
  3. Give the group enough time to calm down before handing out the papers.
  4. Let students just play first; there may be changes in who does which task after they play.
  5. Set a time to finish the tasks so the teams start with their work.
  6. Go round while they play and offer help.
  7. Write down questions or problems arising during the lesson.

After the lesson:

  1. Modify the tasks or change the game according to your observations.

You can find educational games and ideas to use for your English lessons on digitalplay

 
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