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Games in Elementary and Middle School Settings

To many, the term game evokes the image of unfettered fun, interesting and motivating experiences, rule following, and reckless abandon. Games come in many forms, from real-world games to board games to video games. Some suggest that school is simply a complex, years-long game with rules and ways to advance to higher levels. Gaming can be more than mere distraction; in the right pedagogical hands and with aroused minds, games are powerful learning tools. Gaming and schooling have much in common: Perseverance is essential, and boring tasks are more dominant than fun ones. There is at least one distinct difference, however, between schooling and play: Games couch mundane tasks within a narrative fiction that is motivating. Games can make children feel powerful because their actions ...

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