This fall Manhattan will become home to a design and innovation school for digital kids called Quest to Learn. The school is founded by the Institute of Play here in New York and also in collaboration with New Visions for Public Schools, The Center for Transformative Media at The New School, Pearson and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.
The Institute of Play explains:
Q2L uses a Game Based Learning model to prepare youth with the literacies needed in todays world. Games work as rule-based learning systems, creating worlds in which players actively participate, use strategic thinking to make choices, solve complex problems, seek content knowledge, receive constant feedback, and consider the point of view of others. Quest is not a school where children spend their day playing commercial videogames. Instead Quest is a school that combines what researchers and educators know about how children learn best with the principles of game design to create highly immersive, content-rich game-like learning experiences in the classroom. As is the case with many of the games played by young people today, Quest is designed to enable students to “take on” the identities and behaviors of explorers, mathematicians, historians, writers, and evolutionary biologists as they work through a dynamic, challenge-based curriculum with content-rich questing to learn at its core. Games and other forms of digital media serve another useful purpose at Quest: they serve to exemplify the complexity and promise of “systems.” Understanding and accounting for this complexity is a fundamental literacy of the 21st century.
The Institute of Play has been piloting curriculum models in their summer program called the Teacher Institute. The workshops included NYC teachers collaborating with game designers and curriculum specialists to work on game base pedagogy, which is to be the heart of the Quest to Learn model. The teachers at the Q2L school will be afforded the same relationship between game designers in order to fuse and support the successful implementation of the game based learning model.
video of a slide show for the Q2L school.