About game education

One of the most striking things for me during my school visit to Tynecastle High School was that students from S3 onwards are equipped with an iPad in school ( I am not sure whether students in other Scottish school use it in class or not). It might be very common to see children playing iPad beyond the classrooms, but it seems, for me, quite a fashionable approach in language teaching in the classrooms. In my observation, the students in S3 and S4 were taking French classes. The French teacher was giving instructions about how to download the recorder app from iPad to complete speaking tasks. Students were expected to work in pairs to record their speaking contents( in French) and to assess each other’s recording in terms of pronunciation, grammar and so forth (unfortunately no criterion for peer assessment was provided). Not all of the students were concentrating on the tasks in fact. After the class, the French teacher told us that using iPad and its applications to assist teaching could be somewhat time consuming initially as teachers need spend time explaining the way to use it; and sometimes students might be distracted by websites irrelevant to the classes. However it could be an amazing and innovative idea if the tutors receive appropriate and sufficient trainings on teaching with iPad. I agree with his opinions. There are many interesting apps and games available for students to learn language, which to some extent could increase their motivations in learning. However, lack of appropriate training for tutors could result in ineffective learning and other problems. Students might be indulged in playing games or using iPad for online shopping regardless of the instructions of teachers.

Useful link:

The Future of Games in Education: Avatar Generation

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