Adults dismiss educational video games too quickly?

Gaming - Image 1The concept of Edutainment – that is, Educational Entertainment – has been around for a while, and pretty much accepted by parents and instructors worldwide. But a recent survey conducted by Project Tomorrow has found out that one aspect of this concept hasn’t been accepted yet, and that’s educational videogames. Check out the stats and the percentages after the jump.

Classroom - Image 1 

In the world of education, formal (or rather, informal) instruction can come from all sorts of media, not just from schools. From TV shows like Sesame Street to board games like Scrabble, it’s pretty much proven that kids can have fun while learning.

But after a recent survey conducted by the team from Project Tomorrow, a nonprofit education organization, it seems that today’s generation of parents and teachers are not yet ready to accept another form of edutainment: the educational videogames.

It’s really not that surprising, considering that videogames today have been getting quite the bad rap.

But with educational videogames today plainly distinguishable and obviously different from its more entertainment-focused brethren – yours truly is operating on the belief that nobody would mistake Big Brain Academy: Wii Degree for Halo 3 – the figures that the survey got are pretty dismal. Here they are:

  • Only 16% of teachers, 15% of administrators and 19% of parents are on board with using videogames as an educational medium.
  • Only 11% of teachers are actually using videogames in class.
  • More than half of students in grades 3 through 12 believe educational gaming would help them learn.

It’s even sadder when you read the last bit before reading the first two findings. Couple this with yet another finding that only 3% of elementary school students say that they don’t actually play videogames, and the results suddenly jump into the warp pipe from saddening to downright depressing.

Parents, teachers, consider this: Videogames can reach your target demographic – i.e. every kid in school no matter what grade they are – faster and quicker than letting them copy notes.

It lets them learn at their own pace, it presents the focus material in a way that is both informative and entertaining, and when you add the idea of competition – i.e. giving prizes for the top scorer – and you’ve got a classroom more motivated to learn than anything else.

The idea of education being entertaining has been around for quite a while, and videogames are just another way of doing it, except that it’s more contemporary. Try it out – there’s a lot of educational videogames out there in the market today, even on the consoles and the handhelds, and see if it doesn’t work. Updates as we get them, and you can check out the actual study by Project Tomorrow in the via link below.

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