Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Explore Like a Pirate Book Study - Chapter 1

I am linking up with Sweet Sweet Primary for a book study of Explore Like a Pirate by Michael Matera. Join us each week as we share all of our takeaways from this book, that is all about engaging, enriching, and elevating your learners with gamification and game-inspired course design.  If you missed my previous posts you can find them here:

If you would like to read along with us, you can find this book on Amazon here.  It is also currently available for FREE on Kindle Unlimited.

Chapter 1 
The Call of the Explorer: Discover the Adventure That Awaits

Are you ready to set sail and explore the idea of gamification or game based learning? Or are you just wondering what exactly is game based learning?  Either way, you will love this book!

In this first chapter, Matera gives a brief explanation of gamification and highlights the possibilities that are available to teachers and students when used in the classroom.

What is gamification?

Gamification is delivering your lessons and content with elements of game playing.

Why Should I Use Game Based Learning in My Classroom?

When Matera first started using game based learning  in his classroom, he wasn't sure what the experience was going to be like, and he was uncertain if it would be successful.  But, he remembered back to when he was a student that even if the subjects were interesting, he wasn't very motivated.  College seemed to be too far off and the threat of receiving a lower grade didn't seem to phase him. He knew his students were feeling the same way.

As he began using game based learning he discovered that "the power of play in the classroom activates the human spirit and leads to greater content acquisition and self-motivation."

 I know I have students who are also unmotivated - so I am definitely interested in finding out more! 

I have used game based learning in my class, and I definitely see huge gains when I do use these elements.  

My students LOVE learning their math facts, because we use my Kicking It Math System and they earn karate type belts as they progress through the levels.

I have also used games to review concepts we have already learned, like this fishbowl review game and Pie Face.

Even though I have already incorporated some forms of game based learning in my classroom, I am excited to learn even more ways to implement it into my classroom!

Are you interested in learning more as well?  Be sure to follow along with this book study!  In the meantime, I found a few articles about game based learning and gamification that you might want to check out.

What is the difference between game based learning and gamification?  I have often heard these two words used interchangeably, but there is a difference between the two.

Educator's Checklist for Game Based Learning  This article provides educators with a starting ground and list of ways to get started with Game Based Learning.

Game-Based Learning - Why Does It Work?  According to this article, people learn from games and they will learn MORE from games than other forms of learning.  The author lists all of the reasons why it works, and I have to admit that I definitely agree with all of them!


  1. Thanks for sharing those links! I definitely agree that people will learn more from games than from learning in other ways.

  2. Great resources! Thanks for linking up!


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