There is a very decent chance that the Pokemon Go craze has either impacted your life or the life of someone you know over the last two weeks. It is beyond viral…it is a cultural phenomenon of epic proportions.
You may be completely annoyed by it or you may already be addicted to it. It doesn’t really matter. What matters is that school is starting soon and there is a 100% chance that many of your students are involved. For that reason alone, it is worth learning more about it.
My wife, Shelley, spoke with a neighborhood friend and pediatrician this weekend. He started playing it because he knew it would be something he could talk to his young patients about that would help put them at ease and build stronger relationships (He may or may not now be addicted). This is absolutely a Teach Like a Pirate type of rapport-building mindset applied in another field. Kudos to him…and to educators who will step out of their comfort zone to explore something that is likely a big deal for the students who will be walking through their doors very soon.
But why is it so popular? One of the most critical philosophies in Teach Like a Pirate is to always look at the world around you and find what is engaging people and then ask, “How can we use that?”
What are the underlying principles behind it that make it so addicting and how can we embed them into education?
It’s worth noting that Michael Matera wrote an entire book, Explore Like a Pirate, on gamification and how it can be used to create powerful learning experiences for students. If you are intrigued by the success of Pokemon Go, reading Michaels’s book is an absolute no-brainer. We are incredibly proud to publish it as part of the PIRATE series and I wrote more about it in my post, The Attention Span Myth.
I am including several links below to blogs, articles, and podcasts that have been written about the educational lessons that can be learned from Pokemon Go. I will update the blog as more posts are written and discovered…but this is a great start.
My first link is to the fantastic blog of #piratewife, Shelley Burgess. She makes wonderful points about the opportunities for connections that exist via the game.
This 2nd link is to the blog of the amazing David Theriault. He was fast onto the battlefield and took some arrows for being early. Yet another reason I love him…you should explore his entire blog and read additional posts!
Link 4 is from Daniel Williamson and has many thought-provoking ideas on the implications for the #edtech world:
Link 5 is to a Techlandia podcast by Jon Samuelson with guest, David Theriault. (I love Jon’s podcasts…check out more of them!)
Link 6 is a Pokemon Go post from David Theriault that has several tips for playing. I enjoyed reading it so I thought you may enjoy it, too.
Link 7 (New as of 7/26/16) is from Brian McCann, the 2011 Massachusetts High School Principal of the Year:
Link 8 (New on 7/26/16) is from Ryan Reed and centers on using Pokemon Go to teach Digital Citizenship:
Link 9 (New on 7/26/16) is an article in EdTech Focus on K-12 written by Meg Conlan:
Remember! It’s not about whether you like it…it’s about exploring why it is so popular and what we can learn from it to MAKE SCHOOL AMAZING for kids!