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Parents donate 1000 to buy more Nintendogs for the school

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drobertson
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« on: May 12, 2008, 11:09:27 AM »

One of the projects that we have recently initiated up in Aberdeenshire and that is available to view on Handheld Learning's Blip TV channel at present involved the use of Nintendogs for the Nintendo DS. There was some degree of cynicism ans suspicion from parents when they were first told about this project and there was the suggestion of some entrenched concerns that meant that they some parents were not too happy about this at all. However, it does appear that parents were completely turned around in terms of how they perceived this use of a games console in their children's education. Not only was there a general feeling of unexpected contentment and surprise with what turned out to be a wholly positive  experience for the children but one family were so delighted with how their son's attitude to school, to reading , to writing and to his excitement about learning through Nintendogs had so improved that they donated 1000 to the school to buy more of these devices so that other children could benefit from them.

For me, a vindication of how these devices and games contexts resonate with children and how they can make learning relevant and exciting. To get the parents on board in such a way is a really important step in promoting games based learning via devices like the DS or the PSP.

Looking forward to seeing colleagues training their Nintendog at HHL 08 and looking forward to going into bark mode with them.
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Graham
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« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2008, 09:23:21 PM »

I agree with you Derek, this is quite a response from parents who were originally suspicious of the project.

Naturally a lot of parents are buying their children devices such as the DS or PSP. At some point I suspect that some of these parents are going to be asking how schools might embrace them and allow their use, i.e. so children can take their own devices to schools.

Do you have any experience of this in Scotland yet or are all the devices provided by the school / LTS?


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drobertson
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« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2008, 11:00:05 PM »

At the moment much of the work that I have been doing has revolved around me supplying kit to schools to help run with the interventions that we've planned. However, I am constantly receiving requests from schools now wanting to know where they can buy handheld games devices and the more traditional single console. It seems that schools are more than willing to purchase from anywhere between 10 to 100 DS consoles at present. The PSP is also engendering interest from some schools.

One development that is currently ongoing is in West Lothian where they are working at implementing a wireless system and infrastructure that would allow pupils own wireless devices, be it phone, DS, PSP laptop etc, to hook up to the schools wireless network. This is a real attempt to make the pupils' device work as a learning tool in the school environment. This initiative is most probably going to be one of the presentations for the Scottish strand at Handheld Learning 08.
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