Real Life School as an MMORPG

Posted on 02 April 2011 by @strategy_guide

School as an MMORPG - Well maybe not online

You just transferred to the new school, and have new-kid-itis. That's OK though, all of your paper work and medical records checked out, you are entered into the system and got your student ID issued. +100xp . . look who just leveled up!! Level 1 student.

It's now 8:05AM - your first day, and the bell just rang. You are already in your homeroom seat. +5XP for you GOOD JOB! You are in front of the class, and tell everyone a bit about yourself. Bonus 50XP. That took guts, but you made it through. Some kids smirk, some smile. You catch the eye of the blonde in the back smiling at you, and quickly look away. Remember, this is a new start for you, don't be shy.

Could this actually work?

This could be a random scenario in any school around the world. Every (positive) action could count toward a pool of points that let you level you up as a student. You wont be gaining any XP for starting a food fight in the cafeteria, but every test, right answer, homework assignment submitted on time etc. will add XP to your file. Made it onto the track team, or the chess club? Good, get some bonus points. Are you going to the math-bowl? More XP. Got some extra credit on your math test? Add double XP points.

Attention spans are apparently at an all time low. That's probably why it took me so long to write this article. Giving a small task based reward system that everything is tied into is exactly the key to bringing our kids back on track academically. It has already been proven that Video Games increase hand and eye coordination, as well as problem solving skills. The only draw back is that so much time is spent playing games like World of Warcraft, and Mafia Wars, and MineCraft, that although fun, don't provide any real world value to the table.

What we could do is take advantage of both worlds. You know how V8 get's kids their veggie servings under the guise of fruit juice, and how games for little kids have educational elements in them? Well, how about putting the fund and addictive qualities of an MMORPG into a learning environment? It wouldn't even have to be a requirement. It could be comply voluntary, but would be enticing. Imagine all those little faces, eager to post their level up to FaceBook after acing a test.

Now it's a race

Something needs to be done to bring us back to the forefront of the global educational race. Why not make it into a competitive race then? Nothing is more enticing that beating an opponent, or making the top of a list. For a lot of students, myself included (oh so long ago), would have never cared to excel at school merely for the sake of gaining an education. Something else was needed.

"Luckily" for me, my family being poor, money was a great motivation. I'm not talking about the promise of a great job following hard work and studying, but my dad managed to set aside enough cash and a promise of $20 for every A and $10 for every B. You can imagine what my report card would have looked like otherwise. I didn't get straight A's, but the prospect of being in control to gain a few hundred dollars made me submit my homework, participate in class, and hey, I even learned something to boot!

Positive reinforcement is what I'm talking about.

Now that we have technology at our disposal, and more developers than we can shake a stick at, It's time to take education to the next level!!

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