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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

How I Gamified My Classroom: Items

This post is all about one of the baby steps I took to add game elements into my classroom- using Items! 

I was a little skeptical about using items at first. I'm horrible at remembering to hand out things like tickets, deal with punch cards, money for a classroom economy, etc. In the past I've used item like things for little rewards, and it was never as motivating for the students, or myself,  as I wanted it to be. This time I was really motivated, and so far it's working out okay!

The items I'm using now give the students an advantage in a game that we play. I already play learning games in class so this was an easy way to add gamification into my classroom. Each item has  different "power" and can be earned by doing different things. Some items are worth game points, which can be used to break ties, as a starting score, etc. 

Sea Shells: This is a very low level item. It's worth only 5 game points, so it's not very valuable. I used this a lot at the beginning of the year, but not so much now. 

Sword: Similar to Sea Shells, this is worth game points. It has 3 levels, but my students have only earned the level 1 sword so far. Level 1 is worth 10 game points, level 2 is worth 25 game points, and level 3 is worth 50 game points. 

Treasure Chest: This is a favorite item in my classroom right now. The treasure chest allows the team to earn double points for the next 3 rounds. 

Mutiny: This item allows students to "curse" a player on another team. I haven't had the chance to get more creative than a "silent" curse. When a player has been hit with a silent curse they have to remain silent the entire game, OR their team loses all their points! 

Mapquest: This item isn't exactly for use in a game, but it's something that students will definitely need during the school year. It allows one of their missing classroom supplies to be replaced. It's only the end of the first quarter and I already have many lost or broken homework folders, so it's time to cash these babies in!

Jolly Roger:I haven't introduced this item to my class yet, but it is coming soon! This item will allow the holder to bend the rules in a game. I'm really excited to see how this one plays out!

Conch: This item will allow students to call out to another student to help them during a game. If someone has the conch they can play it and ask another player to help them, or if another student is struggling they can play it to go help them. I haven't used this one yet, but it'll come into play soon!

Pieces of Eight: This one.. I haven't quite figured out yet or introduced. It will be a set of 8 coins that the students will collect, and on their own they are useless. As part of a set, the student in possession of all eight will be unstoppable. I have no idea what that looks like yet, but I've got time to figure it out!

I've hidden items around my classroom inside books, but most of them are tied to returning homework assignments and completing work. Since it is something relatively new, my class hasn't completely figured out how to use items. But, they excited about it, and it's fun for me to watch!

Check back next Wednesday 10/26 to read about the mini games I play in my classroom! I've posted about some of the games before, but this post includes some new ones, too. 

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