When you picture a high school classroom, you probably imagine the learners working studiously at their desks. This is the traditional idea of what should take place in the classroom and no doubt it is the reality for the majority of high school classrooms around the world. After all, education is important and learners need to take it seriously.
However, all work and no play makes anyone a dull person, so there should be a balance in the classroom between hard work and enjoyable activities. In other words, there are times to be serious and times to have fun. And this is why teachers should incorporate games into lessons. They are a lot of fun and the students clearly enjoy them, but do they actually have any educational value?
To consider this further, let’s look at five reasons learners should be playing games in the classroom.
- They up the enjoyment factor
We all know how learners of all ages love to play games and it’s no different in the classroom. Playing games and taking part in fun activities allows learners to take their minds off studying for a moment and relax. This creates a positive atmosphere in the classroom, which contributes to learner motivation. If students enjoy coming to class, they are more likely to enjoy learning.
- They engage the students
In order for content to be learned, whether it is vocabulary, facts of theories, learners need to focus on the topic for it to be processed and understood. Playing a game which relates to that content ensures the learners are paying attention, which will aid comprehension and retention.
- They allow students to fail
Games are fun and they allow learners to relax and joke around with their classmates. As a result, they pay less attention when they make mistakes; they are more focused on winning the game. In general then, games allow learners to be creative, adventurous and brave without the embarrassment of failure.
These days learners are used to being stimulated all the time when they are not in the classroom, through their mobile phones, TV and the internet. When they come into the classroom, if they are not adequately stimulated, they will become distracted and bored. A classroom full of learners who are fidgeting or not paying attention is not an effective learning environment. By playing games, we can ensure that students are engaged and interested in what they are learning.