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Is it recommended to create games to enhance learning when teaching a topic that...

doesn't exactly generate excitement or enthusiasm?

I instruct adult learners in the medical field. I have had success in giving the students clay to make models of a neuron instead of a written test. They are shocked at first, then interact with each other, laugh, complain the clay colored their hands, and to my delight and theirs get terrific scores and have better retention on the material.
I also have a large box decorated like dice. Students are divided into groups and throw the dice across the class room. They have the opportunity to to earn points by answering pertinant questions on the topic of the day. Everyone has fun and it gets them out of their seats.

Hi Margaret,
Thank you for your forum comments. You are offering your students and excellent blend of learning opportunties. Any time you can combine mind and body in the learning process you are going to excellerate the acquistion process.

Hi Emmanuelle,

As an instructor, I feel games can enhance the learning process. I teach an anatomy and physiology course which can be utterly boring. While it can be difficult to make a course interesting that reflects a multitude of terms, it helps keep student interest. We play Jeopardy and I have played "Who wants to be a Millionaire?" with other classes. However, I do remind then that there are no monetary prizes on a teacher's salary.

Hi Cheryl,
Good point about using the games. Also good point about the lack of money for prizes. Too bad as educators we can't afford to make all our students millionairs when they give us the right answers. Oh well, maybe in the future society will see how valuable we really are, but until then we will just have to keep plugging away.

I give the students the task of creating games as their assignment for the module. I give them an outline of what I am looking for and they have to create a board game that is relevant to the course materials. They have a blast doing it, they ae forced to read the chapters to find questions and answers for their games, and they wind up learning from the constant reading through the book. Plus the last day of the module I set aside time to play all of the games. They show up just to have fun with their fellow students, which also helps my retention!

This is what creative teaching is all about. You are letting them take charge of their learning while serving as the learning leader. Congratulations on making your class both informative and enriching while using methods that get the students engaged at a higher level.

Dr. Gary Meers

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