Conference Paper

Playing in the special education school: from gamers to game designers

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In a one year old study, students with mild and moderate intellectual disability, used serious games in their educational practice. Communication, interaction, participation and motivation have been documented in a qualitative study using two different classrooms as case studies. In this paper we describe the documented process of these endeavors, as students turned from gamers into game designers. During the study we were able to document changes in the educational atmosphere, including change of roles and communication re-enforcement between students and teachers. Co-operative game design workshops were organized, as part of the European Project Code RED , targeting students in the risk of early school leaving (ESL), by using game design workshops as a tool of motivation and inclusion.

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... The term games, in the special education field, is often defined as important and highly dynamic educational motivators which enable users to be involved in immersive experiences while provoking reflection and improving cognitive capacity [7]. As games had been used to integrate learning since the early century, it had become a tool for teaching and learning since then. ...
Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is one of the fastest growing disorders around the world. The increasing rate of occurrence in Malaysia is estimated to occur in 1 of every 625 children and has since become a great concern to the community. Due to insufficient resources to cater for the autism education services, ineffective teaching strategy, and inadequate good positive behavioural support, this work is initiated as a means of solution to aid this issue. Findings of how a mobile games application, “Safe and Sound” featuring personalisation avatar can foster autistic children’s positive behaviour in social practices aspect are reported in this paper. Mobile game applications are used to trigger the children’s imagination for cognitive development as it is expected to become reliable to support content for the children to learn and apply in real situations. This analysis is entirely focused on interactions in schools by examining data from classroom activities. Three findings were revealed: (i) Personalised avatar can trigger children with ASD interest, (ii) Personalised avatar can promote emotions and feelings among children with ASD, and (iii) Avatar can facilitate social interaction among children with ASD. Thus, mobile games that incorporate personalised avatar can support children with ASD, especially to facilitate their positive behavioural skills.
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The Learning Guide is a Handbook for introducing the INVOLEN learning methodology to teachers and facilitators of intergenerational learning. The Guide includes a documentation of the pilot-courses in the form of case studies and suggestions for suitable practical nature conservation activities as identified by project experts. The Guide also features examples of the learning games developed by the volunteers, providing links to online examples.
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