Connecting dots for digital learning and teaching

Games-Based Learning Could Build Outstanding Lessons

In the UK, ‘Ofsted’ stands for The Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills.  They essentially inspect schools (and other children’s services) and grade them based on various criteria.  This has a considerable effect on the school’s reputation. The top ‘grade’ you can achieve through Ofsted is outstanding and teachers and schools all over the UK are striving to achieve ‘outstanding lessons’.  But what does this mean exactly?

Paul Ladley pointed to the explanation from this post : The Outstanding lesson

It is often more important to focus on what the pupils are doing than what the teacher is doing. What the pupils do and learn in a lesson is often a better indicator of the quality of a lesson. The key factors include:

  • Are the pupils highly engaged?
  • Do they move from listening to being positively motivated?
  • Do they learn and make progress?
  • Do they obviously enjoy the lesson and have fun, and are they keen to discuss what they have learned and what they might be doing in the next lesson?
  • Do the pupils ask appropriate (and challenging) questions?
  • Do they show a keen interest in the tasks?
  • Are they proud of their work?
  • Are the pupils involved in deciding any part/content of the next lesson on the topic?

And, in Paul’s blog, Outstanding Lessons and Games Based Learning,  he discussed how game-based learning could be utilized to facilitate the outstanding lesson. It’s worth your reading. Learning by doing and learning by being can respond to the consideration that what the pupils do and learn in a lesson is often a better indicator of the quality of a lesson.

Paul also had a white paper : Gamification, Education and Behavioural Economics. We think every educator should read it! Here are some highlighted concerns:

  • Behavioural Impacts in Education
  • Gamification Design and B J Fogg’s Behaviour Model : If we want to achieve behavioural change then we need to design accordingly. B J Fogg’s Behaviour Model provides a method of understanding how we can change behaviour and specifically how we can design to increase the chance of achieving a likely outcome. The model states that an individual needs to be motivated, have ability and be triggered into action… (read the paper for the full discussion)

game-based learningMotivating students and raising attainment, preparing students for a changing world and giving students a sense of agency for their lives and this world. A game-based learning system can help with those goals.

Paul Ladley is a Director of pixelfountain and has around 20 years of multimedia and games based learning experience.  Sian Ladley is a Learning Consultant at pixelfountain and is currently writing a dissertation on games based learning.

pixelfountain delivers innovative training courses and provides licences of  learning simulations (serious games) for use in training, induction, team building amongst other things.  games-ED is a brand of pixelfountain which licences games based learning to schools, colleges and universities.  pixelfountain simulations have been used in over 450 workshops to train over 6,500 people.


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“Tell me and I will forget, show me and I may remember, involve me and I will understand.” -------- Chinese Wisdom "Games are the most elevated form of investigation." -------- Albert Einstein
"I'm calling for investments in educational technology that will help create digital tutors that are as effective as personal tutors, educational software as compelling as the best video game," President Barack Obama said while touring a tech-focused Boston school (year 2011).
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