High school students learn literary classics through gaming

"Gamification" is a new technique in schools

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - Senior English students at Independence High School have integrated gaming into their schoolwork recently.

While reading Beowulf the students were asked to build board games consisting of characters, places, adventures that they come up with themselves.

The games are a part of a new learning technique making its way around the country known as "gamification", said English teacher Kip Glazer.

It has helped students become more interested in the course,which Glazer said can be daunting on many teenagers.

"Students that used to sleep through my classroom are now taking leadership roles" said Glazer.

The students built their fantasy world based on the ancient literature Beowulf, but the game they play is based on Dungeons and Dragons, a fantasy role-playing game popular among teens.

"It's almost like getting them to read things and understand the literature without even realizing they are putting in all that work," said Glazer.

The student enjoy the new way of learning, as well.

"It's not just learning a story by the words on the paper, it's making it come to life in front of you and it's easier to learn that way," said Hannah Jennison, one of Glazer's students.

Glaser is the only teacher at Independence using this technique. She will showcase her lessons to the California League of Schools in January.

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