MET 2019 Summer Institute on Digital Games, Learning and Pedagogy was a roaring success

The 2019 MET summer institute offered 50 MET students an intensive opportunity to explore the pedagogies that support playing and making digital games for the classroom.

“I’ve told many people about the course and will be sharing a lot of what I learned with my colleagues when I’m back at work.” 

Digital games – the creative medium of the 21st century – are played on phones, tablets and dedicated desktops and consoles by millions of adults and children worldwide. They are also the single fastest growing creative industry on the planet: in North America, the digital games market is expected to grow up to 10% (across all sectors – mobile, PC and console) in 2019 alone. Concomitantly, education authorities, and teachers in particular, have been slow not only to understand the educational value of digital games, but also to integrate these media in teaching and learning ecologies.

Course authors and instructors Dr. Jen Jenson and Dr. Suzanne de Castell described the intensive summer institute week:

It was a blast! We spent part of every day playing games: boardgames, card games, digital games, and then we played the Harry Potter augmented reality game on our phones at lunchtime. We read plenty of articles and chapters, had small and large group discussions, learned how to make TWINE games and how to use RPGmaker, had a talk and a question and answer session with Paul Darvesi, an Ontario High school teacher who gave a terrific presentation on how he used Grand Theft Auto in his class, and what he students learned from playing it, and then there was a whole lot of watching You Tube to learn other new skills folks found they needed as they progressed from game concept to design document to development process to production, lots of scouring through google images to find usable game assets, and most importantly of all, MAKING our own games in small groups. Here are some pics of the absolutely fabulous presentations—all in just 5 days.