Context, Inquiry, and Collaboration: Video Games as Constructivist Learning Environments

This morning I am presenting Context, Inquiry, and Collaboration: Video Games as Constructivist Learning Environments at NECC in room SDCC 8 at 10am. If you are at the conference I hope you’ll come by. If you’re not here, I hope you’ll check out the slides below. In either case I hope these will serve as a useful reference for you as you explore this topic.

>Below is a link to the presentation in PDF format (Warning: 61.8 MB file – I’ll post a smaller one as soon as I can. It kept freezing as I tried to print to pdf this evening. Grr.):


I’ve also been inspired to begin a video games in education wiki to serve as an evolving resource for educators interested in this topic. I simply created the space, and need to return to it after the conference to add the content from my presentation. Meanwhile, feel free to contribute or discuss there:

If you attend the session, please leave a comment below, or link to this post from your own blog so I get the trackback. :)

UPDATE: The session was a blast. Though I was a couple minutes late (which was entirely my fault – and entirely embarrassing*) the opening anecdotes seemed to really warm up the crowd, and judging from the amount of interest and interesting discussions I had afterwards, it was a success. I particularly appreciated the “will you write an article for us” and “will you speak at our conference” type questions, but the winner for best question goes to Jeff Halstead from Spokane, WA, who asked me to say (in five minutes or less) what I would do to change a high school. Wow. I need a matchbox answer to that. I alternated between not knowing what to say and then wanting to go into what a challenging process it would be and how we would need to know the goals of the school and the interests of the stakeholders and PLCs and so on.

I still feel I probably tried to include too much (and I had to skip the new section on what kind of organizational change would be necessary for games to work in schools), but I’m glad I was getting the word out and asking a room full of teachers, technology coordinators, and administrators to consider the potential of games and simulations in the classroom.

*At least I could blame my out of sorts behavior on having my car wrecked by a valet that morning. But, too, I was happily distracted by conversations with Will Richardson, Robert Craven, Ted Lai, and a teacher from Australia whose name I didn’t catch – she had a unique perspective on the Nicholas Negropante keynote; she was concerned (and upset, I think) that he was not considering the poor of the south pacific. Thank you to Eva and Jenith (and others I think) who made sure I actually showed up in time! For some reason I was temporarily under the impression that I was speaking at 10:30! Sheesh!

UPDATE 2: Here are some links to posts about this session. I’ll add more as I discover them. Thanks to everyone who took notes or wrote about the session. :)

Video Games as Constructivist Learning Environments-Mark Wagner (Via The Thinking Stick.)

NECC 2006 : Context, Inquiry, and Collaboration: Video Games as Constructivist Learning Environments (Via C.)

Video Games as Constructionist Learning Environments (Via Bethany’s Education Blog.)

NECC: Video Games as Constructivist Learning Environments (Via pondering.)

21st Century Collaborative: Gaming in Education (Via 21st Century Collaborative.)

UPDATE 3: Thanks to Debbie Ferguson for sending me this picture (above) of me talking to folks following my presentation.