Game Based Learning (Post 1)

Updated: Feb 24

For the past 6 years, I have implemented game based learning with video games, in correlation with my English/Language Arts class. The process does require a decent amount of preparation and work, but the results are well worth the effort.


In essence, game based learning is an educational approach, where my students explore relevant aspects of games in a learning context along with our English/Language Arts learning strands. This blog post will share/showcase some of these creations along with some of the work students have produced throughout the process. Keep in mind that this is the first Game Based Learning post only, so be on the lookout for future posts!


Post 1 Games/Educational Experiences


1. Far From Noise (Hanging on the Edge-Video Game Visible Analysis)

2. Cuphead (Sequence Writing with Cuphead)

3. Oxenfree (A Dangerous Island of Dialogue)

4. Mini Metro (Improving Analytical and Writing Skills on the Metro)

5. Pinstripe (Mending a Broken Heart with a Growth Mindset)

Video Game: Far From Noise

Learning Experience Creation: Hanging on the Edge-Video Game Visible Analysis


This learning experience is inspired by the game, Far From Noise, by George Batchelor, which takes a simplistic approach at conveying an individual's struggles to find where they belong.


Overall, the students can be shown 7 video game clips, from my play through of the game. Then, they analyze the deeper meaning of the clips through various activities, such as Visible Thinking techniques, from Ron Ritchhart and Harvard Project Zero; and some created, on my own.


Below, you can see Part 1 of the entire learning adventure.


1. Review the activity you’ll be focusing on.

2. Show the embedded clip, by clicking the arrow.

3. Complete the activity.

4. Discuss or conduct a think/pair/share review




Activity 1: 3-2-1 Bridge

Activity 2: Exposition

Activity 3: Step Inside

If interested in the entire learning guide, feel free to visit my teaching store.










Video Game: Cuphead

Learning Experience Creation: Sequence Writing with Cuphead


This fun game based experience is simplistic in nature. Inspired by Cuphead, by Jared Moldenhauer/Developed by Studio MDHR; I utilize short clips of my playthrough of this phenomenal and beautiful game, to inspire students to improve their sequencing in writing.


For our purposes, we are going focus on “sequence” as a noun.


Sequence - a particular order in which related events, movements, or things follow each other.


Throughout the experience, the students are shown my video game clips, as inspiration to practice their sequencing skills and utilizing transitions within their writing.


Below, you can see the first sequence writing experience of the entire learning adventure.


With my students, I use this simple process:

1. Watch hyperlinked gameplay video and take

notes of things that happen (in the clouds).

2. Complete the sequence organizer.

3. Type the gameplay sequence in paragraph form.


Step 1: Brainstorm in the Clouds

Step 2: Complete Sequence Organizer

Step 3: Putting It Together

If interested in the entire learning guide, feel free to visit my teaching store.










Video Game: Oxenfree

Learning Experience Creation: A Dangerous Island of Dialogue


A Dangerous Island of Dialogue allows students to think on high levels, as they will need to analyze 20 pieces of dialogue and one monologue from the game's script. Dialogue is important since it helps move the plot line forward. Additionally, it's through dialogue that the reader (or viewer) gets to know, understand, and care about the characters within a fictional story.


Below, you can see the first two dialogue learning activities of the entire learning adventure.


Dialogue 1: The Island

Dialogue 2: The Pool

If interested in the entire learning guide, feel free to visit my teaching store.








Video Game: Mini Metro

Learning Experience Creation: Improving Analytical and Writing Skills on the Metro



This unique learning adventure tasks students with analyzing various metro systems, along with practicing their evidence based writing skills.


The activities are inspired by the game, Mini Metro, by Dinosaur Polo Club. As a game,

Mini Metro is about keeping passengers moving and happy. The element of transport stations is the heartbeat of the metro system. Obviously, passengers appear (spawn in gamer terms) at the stations. As the design of various metro stations expand, new station options arise.

Below, you can see a portion of the first of five metro station activities.










If interested in the entire learning guide, feel free to visit my teaching store.







Video Game: Pinstripe

Learning Experience Creation: Mending a Broken Heart with a Growth Mindset

Mending a Broken Heart with a Growth Mindset tasks students with analyzing various clips from my playthrough of Pinstripe, by Thomas Brush. Each brain boosting activity focuses on developing a growth mindset.


While at first glance, Pinstripe may look like a typical platforming game: get past one challenge to meet the next. However, when looked at closely, one can infer that the game has a much deeper message.


The story follows the trials and tribulations of former priest, Teddy. Teddy, a former minister, rides along a train with his young daughter, Bo. During the ride, an unexpected

visitor, named Pinstripe, makes himself welcome. Soon after, Mr. Pinstripe kidnaps young Bo. Quickly, the train crashes into a town and Teddy immediately proceeds to search for and rescue his daughter.


Below, you can see the first two of fourteen activities!


If interested in the entire learning guide, feel free to visit my teaching store.








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