Children are usually highly motivated to engage in gaming activities. How can games be used in educational programs? This study explored the integration of children’s traditional games in the classroom and the role of children’s motivation and experience. I will discuss the design and results of the study. Moreover, I will provide research-based tips.
Traditional games that enhance learning activities
Game playing can contribute to children’s learning. Traditional games are non-digital, informal games without special commercial products, for example hide and seek. Traditional games can be used to enhance learning activities, for example:
- Interactive problem solving challenges
- Practical tests of skills
Design of the study
In this study, children’s learning outcomes after classes with traditional games and standard classes were compared. In addition, the role of children’s motivation and experience was explored. Six different types of traditional games were used during school classes. For example, games that involved numbers and calculations were used during math. To explain the game and enrich the gaming and learning experience, the games were visualized with presentation software and computer programs.
Five elementary schools participated in the study. Children filled out a questionnaire about their motivation (for example their desire to engage in the task) and experience (for example their satisfaction about this type of school activity). In addition, teachers evaluated children’s learning outcomes after each learning session. School classes with game-based activities and standard classes were compared. In short, the results of the study showed that:
- Children’s learning performance increased when the classes with game-based activities were used.
- Children’s motivation and experience influenced their learning achievements.
- Game-based activities can increase children’s motivation, experience and learning achievements. As such, game play can enrich children’s learning experience. Try to engage in traditional games with children.
- Traditional games can be used in the classroom for children of varying ages and different topics and subjects. Moreover, games can be adjusted if needed.
Trajkovik, V., Malinovski, T., Vasileva-Stojanovska, T., & Vasileva, M. (2018). Traditional games in elementary school: Relationships of student’s personality traits, motivation and experience with learning outcomes. PloS one, 13(8), e0202172.