Making “Green Sector” fun through board games

April 20, 2018
By: Ramon Fernandez

A growing body of research proves that properly designed team-based board games not only inspire learning, but they also encourage communication, collaboration and risk taking. They empower players by helping them to build self-confidence. The different elements of the game are designed to support a wide range of partaker abilities, and to make them play different roles.

Last EUROPEA meeting in Normady showed us that this can be also applied in the “green sector”. There were two workshops where the creators of the board games explained us how they got the idea, how they developed it and how benefitial they are at classroom.

RURALIS is a role-playing game created by a French teacher for the learning of agroecology. Each player assumes a different role on the board, which is a real place in a French country side. The objective is to negotiate until reaching an agreement that will be beneficial for all of them. This means that students have to understand their role in the game, communicate with each other, and agree on benefits for the environment.

AGROCHALLENGE is a card game in which pupils can learn the different environmental escenarios and their possible solutions. Through the game, they will be aware of the current threats of our planet and how they could be prevented. A very motivated teacher, Danuta Rzewuski, developed it years ago. The game is in French but there is a draft English version. If you want to know more about this game, she is looking for some partners to develop it in different languages. Her email address is danuta.rzewuski@educagru.fr

In those workshops, teachers realized that they need to challenge the current bias in many educational settings against designing and using games. Games are useful, effective, and enjoyable for all ages. Board games provide many educational and teaching benefits and have proven their value when designed appropriately for learning.

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