Geocaching + Prototyping

21 Mar

The Games Based Learning conference, Game To Learn: Take 2 in Dundee this past weekend was a great experience and i’ll blog more about some of the outcomes as soon as I can process them all.

One of the things I was keen to do was document one of my ‘SuperFly Safari’ treasure hunt QR experiences. I wanted to try to capture and understand more about what is so enjoyable about these games; but also what the story capturing process might be if it was integrated into the experience.

Capturing my own game was problematic as it seemed to hinder the process of play. It was also very difficult to follow anyone as the game was being played in breaks between talks and meals. What I chose to do instead was tag along with a group on Ollie Bray’s GeoCaching workshop. While I was taking part a little bit, the main focus was documenting and observing.

This gave me many insights, not only during the game but also afterwards. The fact that I was taking images meant that no one else had to bother too much; instead they got on with enjoying the game in the knowledge that I would be sharing my images afterwards. Once the images were uploaded the sharing began, and while I didn’t know everyones email or twitter id, they soon materialised via the network that had grown in the group.

The fact that everyone playing was a teacher or student teacher was also helpful. It demonstrated to me that I could devise games like this as a demonstration of what could be done, but not worry about how suitable it was for kids… I could give them ideas but it was down to them, and more enjoyable I think, for them to think of ways of interpreting the game into their own area or style of teaching.

I was happy that here was evidence of any area where stories could be made, recorded and shared… and with a bit more work, the experience could be enhanced to have real learning outcomes built in. You can find a visual record of our story here on Flickr.


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