Dungeons and Dragons Rolls Into the Classroom (a response)

by Hawke Robinson published 2019/01/04 13:55:00 GMT-7, last modified 2019-01-04T13:58:46-07:00
This is a response to the recent WNYC article "Dungeons & Dragons Rolls Into the Classroom.

Original article link: https://www.wnyc.org/story/dungeons-and-dragons-critical-hit-classroom/

 

Response

You should definitely check out The Role Play Workshop in Oakland California. The founder was a certified classroom instructor back in the 1980s, and found RPGs such an effective teaching modality she quit her job and created the organization, and has been doing that for a living, teaching through RPGs, ever since, with a number of others she trains to run their proprietary RPG setting and system (Abantey). https://roleplayworkshop.com/

Also there is a LOT of research in their public database on the efficacy of role-playing games in the classroom and to achieve educational goals, as listed on the non-profit RPG Research's website.There are many, many others using RPGs to improve the learning experience with great results. http://www2.rpgresearch.com/@@search?SearchableText=education

Additionally if you haven't already, definitely check out Denmark's Østerskov Efterskole using LARP for high school education across multiple subjects (VICE did an article a few years ago about them). 

And neuroscience theories support possibilities as to why RPGs are so effective at enhancing the learning process. Check out the essay "Using Role-Playing Games to Enhance the Learning Process, from the Cognitive Neuropsychology Perspective" for a brief list of reasons. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/321368904_Using_Role-Playing_Games_to_Enhance_the_Learning_Process_from_the_Cognitive_Neuropsychology_Perspective

This is all kind of full circle. Back in the early 80s, many schools in the US and Canada used RPGs to improve education with great results, but then the anti-RPG (BADD) movement lead to most schools banning and dropping of those highly successful programs. So we are kind of circa 1982 here again. http://www2.rpgresearch.com/blog/various-articles-and-discussions-on-role-playing-game-stigma

Nice to see things improving but about 30 years behind in public acceptance and awareness. Hopefully will keep up the momentum this time. :)

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