Forum Friday – Playing Games or Learning Online?
Every Friday I share a noteworthy resource or discussion from the Tech Savvy Ed Forum with a wider audience. Why? Because there’s just so much goodness there to share that goes unnoticed. This week I thought I’d have a bit of fun, since it’s the end of the school year for me. I spent most of the day hopping in and out of classrooms to say goodbye to students, attend parties, and play a few videogames with a few teachers that had “game day” today. Since there are many students and teachers that game, I thought I’d share a post by Falconphysics (aka Steve). Apparently Steve is a gamer, as am I, and with the advent of smaller, more powerful, wifi connected gaming devices, it’s only a matter of time before teachers start taking advantage of them for use in the classroom.
I just got the newly released Opera browser for my Nintendo DS, so I thought I’d put it through its paces.
So far I’ve managed to check my gmail, digg, and google search. I was dissapointed to find that google docs doesn’t work.
It’s much slower than actually surfing on a computer, but not unbearable. I suppose I’ll have to try blogging from it next.
For those unfamiliar with the Nintendo DS, it’s a rather ingenious portable game system that uses two screens (one of them touch sensitive) to give gamers a sense of interaction with the game. Also available for the system is a chat program via wireless connections, and other PDA-like functionality using the touch screen and the stylus it comes with. What Steve is referring to is the brand new Internet browser that just came out for the device, allowing anyone with a wifi connection to browse the Internet. While there are many educators out there right now screaming”Foul!” and “Never in my classroom!” I’m really sold on Steve Dembo’s idea of Mobile Learning Redefined. If parents are willing to spend the money to put these type of powerful Internet-ready devices in the hands of our students, why shouldn’t we capitalize on that, and use the devices in our classrooms rather than cross our fingers and hope for the two dusty student machines in the corner to work, or to fight for time in the computer lab. Now, I’m fortunate to have a district with wonderful machines, but I know many that don’t, and this is something that could not only serve as a viable alternative, but also provide a huge level of engagement for the students.
Since pictures and video speak louder than words, I’ve embedded a YouTube video demonstrating just how remarkable the browser is. And no, that’s not me in the video. Sorry if it’s blocked at your school 🙁
Images from FlickrCC