Serious Fun: Using Games to Teach the Focus of 2010 Games in Education Symposium, August 16-17 at Tech Valley High School

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Monday, June 14, 2010

Press contacts listed below

The 2010 Games in Education Symposium, an annual event created as a community service for educators in the Capital District, will be held August 16-17 at the Tech Valley High School, located on U Albany's East Campus. The Symposium is a unique opportunity to hear teachers from across the nation share their experiences in utilizing games and other new media in a range of curriculum, and is free to educators, home schoolers, and school administrators.

“Tech Valley High School is honored to host this year?s GiE Symposium,” says Dan Liebert, Principal&Chief Academic Officer of Tech Valley High School.“„Serious Fun? is a great description of what we would like all teaching and learning to be. 21stCentury education needs to use all the tools available to show students that learning most often happens when we?re having fun.”

From aiding football players1 to improving visual acuity2, games are increasingly being used outside of entertainment purposes. Using games for learning is not new, with Oregon Trail being an early example from more than a decade ago. With the advance of technology and increased demands on classroom learning, games and new media are emerging as one of the most effective ways to build content and thinking skills needed for the 21st century. As one example, the Kauffman Foundation has found that students using computer-generated games to learn algebra were on average able to raise their test results by one grade.3

"WMHT is delighted to be a major sponsor of Games in Education again," says Katherine Jetter, Director of Education at the station. "The symposium is an excellent way for local educators to get a hands on opportunity and learn how to integrate these resources into their classroom. PBS continues to provide educational content in multimedia platforms for learners of all ages. The use of high quality educational digital media supports and accelerates learning both in and outside the classroom. Games in Education strengthens teaching and learning in the 21st century classroom."

At the Games in Education Symposium local area educators will hear from pioneering in-service educators who have applied games in a wide array of curricula, while gaining familiarity with the technologies that students have grown up with. Practical in-classroom issues are addressed, such as budgetary concerns and meeting state standards. Hands-on exhibits and workshops create opportunities for educators to test drive some of the games and technology that are seeing success in classrooms.

Peggy Sheehy, Instructional Technology Facilitator and Media Specialist, Suffern Middle School, and Founder, MetaVersEd Consulting Ltd, will be presenting a popular workshop for teachers to get hands on experience with the use of Teen Second Life and how it might apply to their curriculum.“Games in Education is the hidden gem of summer conferences in the North East. I was delighted to discover a smaller conference with so many brilliant speakers and attendees! The perfect size where participants can really sink their teeth into information with plenty of opportunities for one to one and small group networking! This one is not to be missed!"

"Technology and media are moving at an incredible pace,” explains Tobi Saulnier, CEO of 1st Playable Productions. "Students have grown up immersed in games and digital media, while as parents and educators we are challenged to keep up, let alone find effective ways to use these as tools to promote learning. This conference is an opportunity to dive in and soak up ideas that have been test driven in real classroom situations. With a shared focus on STEM education and project-based learning, Tech Valley High School is a perfect setting.”

For more information or to register, please visit www.gamesineducation.org. Tech Valley High School is located at University at Albany - East Campus, DB Wing, 9 University Place, Rensselaer, NY 12144.

PRESS CONTACTS:

1st Playable Contact: Nicole Plummer

Call (518) 271-8172 or email info@gamesineducation.org

WMHT Contact: Katherine Jetter

Call (518) 880-3444 or email at kjetter@wmht.org

REFERENCES:

1)“Game Changes: How Videogames Trained a Generation of Athletes”

http://www.wired.com/magazine/2010/01/ff_gamechanger/all/1

2)“Action video games sharpen eyesight: U.S. Study”

http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE52S1TW20090329

3)“3-D learning with fun and games”

http://scienceinthetriangle.org/2010/05/3-d-learning-with-fun-and-games


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