Playful learning programmes integrate play-based learning or gamification as a central component of learning activities. These might be practical simulations, competitive approaches to learning achievements or simple games that communicate learning points.
It is often quoted that you can find out more about someone in an hour of play than in a year of working together. As early as the ancient Greeks, scholars were pointing out the foundational value of play in learning culture and the order of everyday life. This suggests that if we could only reverse the process, and get back to playing, we could explore alternative scenarios and think up new responses to serious challenges.
But ‘free’ play doesn’t automatically translate into learning. The development of learning programmes requires a careful focus on outcomes design, selection and development of appropriate learning materials and matching modes of delivery to the learners’ capability sets. Traditional presentation of information as a route to learning is a comforting and familiar delivery format for many, but such knowledge often doesn’t stick. It is in the combination of structured delivery and individual creativity that effective learning can truly take place.
Play techniques and learning facilitation may include;
- Gamified learning exercises
- Simulation and skill building
- Social or Role-play
- Game-based Modelling
- Collective Storytelling
- Reflective play exercises