Paper Prototyping Games for Engaged Investigations and Fun in any Subject

Presented by: Teresa Slobuski and James Morgan

Empower student learning thru game development! Games allow designers and players to examine and explore systems; prototyping allows designers to explore rules and play. This session will look at how to apply iterative design to ANY SUBJECT, empowering students of all ages as learners. Paper prototyping lets players collaboratively find the fun while examining a system or an idea. Even games that ultimately will be developed digitally can benefit from the ease and speed of investigating rules, mechanics, and themes that paper prototypes provide. Paper prototyping can be used in a class for students to strengthen and demonstrate their knowledge or understanding of a topic by developing a game around it. It can also be used by educators interested in developing game or game-like activities for their students. Are you a history teacher that wants students to learn more about the black death? Develop a game or guide your students in building a game to understand it. Need an engaging way to teach math concepts? Your first step is paper prototyping!

The majority of the session’s time will be focused on breaking up into groups to design paper prototypes. The speakers will provide a variety of materials for participants to use to create the prototypes. The session will end with a series of 5-10 minutes play times with 5 minutes for designers to debrief and adjust. The session will also include a discussion of general game design principles. We will review various themes and mechanics and discuss how to match the core or goal of the game to the game play. Participants will leave with a deeper understanding of game design, the experiences of rapid prototyping, and digital evidence of the game(s) developed during the session.

Keywords: games and learning, learning from failure, new literacies


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