Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Educational Video Game is NOT an Oxymoron

As most everyone probably knows, we have new social studies curriculum this year. This means that all of us teachers are frantically trying to stay three jumps ahead of the students on information and activities. We all read the textbook over the summer, and most of us read some college-level texts for background, but we are still trying to fill in the gaps. Today I was looking up information on the tiny Russian enclave of Königsberg (German name, Russian possession, long story). This led me into a discussion of The Hanseatic League, and suddenly I was powerfully reminded of being twelve again. We used to have a video game called The Patrician which delt with trade and political intreague around the Baltic Sea. We loved this game and spent hours happily trading wool and wax and all sorts of other things between the cities. I can still remember the cities in the league and the trade goods on offer. I studied this stuff in college, but that is not what stuck in my memory. Now if only Halo and other games had this kind of benefit to offer.

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