How Do Games Help Us Learn?

In an early post of mine, you can read about a couple of games that I have used in my classes to get students moving, talking and thinking: a getting-to-know-you game, and a grammar relay race.  A few weeks ago, a reader (OnQuicken), left a comment on that old post, asking to hear about more classroom games.

There are many ongoing studies of video and computer games as learning tools.  Educational researchers are also investigating the general concept of play, and its role in learning.  I’d like to look into some of the research in this area, and write about it here in the near future.

For now, though, I’d like to hear about your games.

I expect that if you are a primary teacher, you incorporate games into your teaching.  Do you use any games that would be suitable for, or adaptable to, older students?  I’m especially interested in how teachers of high school, college, university and adult education use games in the classroom. What experiences have you had with playing games?  What are the pros and cons of using them?  What successful games have you used?

Students, can you think of learning games that you’ve found especially effective?

Most importantly, have you seen any evidence to suggest that the games you have played, in the classroom or otherwise, have helped you or your students learn?  What and how?

Image by Mark Daniel