Actually using video games to teach: "Playing to Learn"

This looks like a promise link/topic for ENGL 516 for the winter term: via Confessions of an Aca/Fan, I learned about Playing to Learn by David Hutchison. Henry Jenkins has a long post/interview with Hutchison; this links to “part one” of the interview, and I’m sure that a part two (maybe more) will come after this. Here’s a quote from Jenkins blog that indicates to me how this might all fit into this stuff:

Hutchinson’s book promises over 100 game activities appropriate for classroom use, a selection that spans across academic subjects (language arts, mathematics, science, social studies, history, geography, health & physical education, drama, music, visual arts, computers, and business) and grade levels (including both elementary and high school). Writers like James Paul Gee, Kurt Squire, xx and David Shaffer, have made the conceptual argument for the pedagogical value of games; our own Education Arcade has been one of a number of academic research projects focused on designing, prototyping, and field testing games for instructional purposes; Hutchinson’s focus is on what we can do in our schools right now, using projects already on the market, to tap student and teacher interests in games. In the course of the collection, the models many different conceptual approaches for thinking about games — including many designed to foster core media literacy skills. The result is a book which will be valuable to classroom teachers or for that matter, parents who want to engage their children in meaningful conversations about the place of games in their lives and about how games structure the way we see the world.

Sounds cool to me, and as the parent of a child who plays plenty of video games, it might be something I pick up for my own purposes, too.

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