Designing a Minecraft Simulation Game for Learning a Language Through Knowledge Co-Construction

Designing a Minecraft Simulation Game for Learning a Language Through Knowledge Co-Construction

Joeun Baek (Boise State University, USA), Hyekyeong Park (Sancheong Middle School, South Korea) and Ellen Min (Timberline High School, USA)
Copyright: © 2020 |Pages: 28
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-0004-0.ch007

Abstract

The purpose of this chapter is to design a Minecraft simulation game where players can learn a language by communicating and negotiating meaning with other players. To achieve this, Gagné's events of instruction and Schmitt's strategic experience modules were adopted as a theoretical lens for simulation building. After the simulation game was designed, it was implemented to test its feasibility. The result shows that the simulation game has both the intended features of knowledge co-construction and the negotiation of meaning, as well as enjoyment of the game. The test result, however, also suggests that the simulation game needs more conditionals and loops in order for players to repeat their simulation game at any place and time.
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In this section, the basis for the main topic of this study, co-construction of knowledge, will be briefly introduced before looking at its theoretical background in the next section. First, a brief definition of co-construction of knowledge will be discussed and followed by how game play interactions are beneficial for learning in general or learning languages in particular. Then, how the features of knowledge co-construction are implemented within a designed Minecraft simulation game will be described.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Schmitt’s Strategic Experiential Modules: A framework for enhancing participants’ experiences, including sensory experiences (SENSE), affective experiences (FEEL), creative cognitive experiences (THINK), physical experiences, behaviors and lifestyles (ACT), and social-identity experiences that result from relating to a reference group or culture (RELATE).

Knowledge Co-Construction: A premise that learners can learn and grow from social interaction.

Gagne’s Events of Instruction: In 1992, Robert Gagné and his colleagues developed a nine-step instructional process that includes (1) gaining attention, (2) informing learners of objectives, (3) stimulating recall of prior learning, (4) presenting the stimulus, (5) providing learning guidance, (6) eliciting performance, (7) providing feedback, (8) assessing performance, and (9) enhancing retention and transfer.

Negotiation of Meaning: A process that people go through to reach a clear understanding of each other. In second language acquisition, it is defined as an attempt to overcome comprehension problems.

Role Play: The act of imitating the character and behavior of someone who is different from oneself.

Simulation Game: Computer games in which players are provided with a simulated environment. Such games contain a mixture of skills, chances, and strategies to simulate an aspect of reality.

MMORPG (Massively multiplayer online role-playing game): An online game-playing environment where a large number of people can participate simultaneously.

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