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Meaningful Play 2018 at Michigan State University

Session Information

TitleGetting Teachers to Drink the GBL Kool Aid

Matthew FarberMatthew Farber, Ed.D. is an assistant professor of Technology, Innovation, and Pedagogy at the University of Northern Colorado. He has been invited to the White House, to keynote for UNESCO, and he has been interviewed about games and learning by NPR, Fox News Radio, USA Today, and The Wall Street Journal. With Karen Schrier, Ed.D., he co-authored the UNESCO MGIEP working paper, The Limits and Strengths of Using Digital Games as "Empathy Machines." Dr. Farber's books include Gamify Your Classroom: A Field Guide to Game-Based Learning -- Revised Edition, and Game-Based Learning in Action: How an Expert Affinity Group Teaches with Games, which features a foreword from James Paul Gee. For more, please visit

TimeFriday, October 12, 1:00p-2:00p
LocationMSU Union Ballroom
DescriptionHow are educators using games in their classrooms to give students agency, while also teaching skills such as empathy, design, and systems thinking? This question has motivated Dr. Farber's research about educators who are experts of game-based learning, and now informs his current inquiry into teachers who view themselves as learning designers. This presentation will: a) share findings from Dr. Farber's recent book, Game-Based Learning in Action; b) review the development of his teacher education courses, each of which integrates constructionism, where students experience and then design personally meaningful artifacts (Papert, 1993); and c) preview forthcoming research about the social practices of educators in the 2018 cohort of Global Minecraft Mentor community. Dr. Farber will also comment on promises and challenges of game-based learning in practice, and how games can be children's machines, not teaching machines.

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