As a lot of our users are teachers. Therefore we thought it would be useful to connect different Seppo features with different pedagogical theories and frameworks to show you how indeed, Seppo has a place in the educational world. It is not just gamification for the sake of gamification.
In this first part our Head of User Experiece, Eeva discusses the constructivist learning theory and links it to for example game boards and levels.
As constructivist learning theory sees it, learning happens by building – constructing – new knowledge on top of previous knowledge. There is also a social dimension to learning: it happens in interaction with others.
As a combination of our personal experiences and formal learning, our knowledge is connected to everyday life. An authentic environment can help learners to see connections between it and the subject to be learned. In Seppo, live map games take learners to explore their everyday environment. When authentic environments can’t be used, 360° pictures are a good replacement.
A good way to start learning is to become aware of what we already know about the subject. Taking advantage of levels, we can gradually build new knowledge. On the first level the exercises can evoke, test and make prior knowledge explicit. On the following levels players can get new information and apply it to gain new knowledge. At the end of the game there can be a check how players' understanding on the subject has changed.
Another way to use levels is to increase the difficulty level step by step. This way learners can work in their zone of proximal development: if an exercise is too easy for a learner, he can move on to the next level. For another learner the difficulty level is just right on the lower level.
When we want to study a subject from multiple perspectives, exploration mode is a good tool for that. A game can have up to 10 game boards. If one is dedicated as an introductory, the nine other game boards can each represent an angle: a theme or a subject in multidisciplinary learning. Allowing learners to choose the angles they are interested in can increase their motivation. Players can then come together and share what they have learned. This way learning becomes social: learners can learn from each other.
In the next part we will discuss Seppo and constructive learning theory from the perspective of exercises and feedback, so stay tuned!