January 20, 2007

Shootout! Learning through TV and gaming

Shootout The History Channel shows you a documentary covering one of the biggest battles in history such as Okinawa or the Afghan conflict - and then puts you into that battle in a first-person shoot-em-up game you can download to your PC.

As a Mac user I've not had a chance to follow through with the gaming part of this learning experience, called Shootout!, so don't know how dubious it all is. But The History Channel has in the past proven enjoyable and informative as a TV learning device and I can only imagine that the game will attract more youngsters (if they are, indeed, the intended audience) to learn about history.

Is this simply glamourising war or is it a genuine learning opportunity? Let me know - I think Shootout is on the TV in the UK on Tuesday nights on the History Channel (via cable).


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As lord kitchner said "Dont talk to me of attrocities, all war is an attrocity." I find it hard to believe the computer game will really expose children to the true horror of war. Will there be dead babies, innocent victims left mutilated on screen. I think not. Im sure it will follow the standard model of good guys versus bad guys. I think we really have to teach children about peace and the horror of war. Also it would be useful to move away from the model of we're good theyre bad, at look at both sides. I dont think this game will promote these ideals. It might be "fun" but its not a realistic education.

phone 0131 348 6373 for a copy of the scottish peace education booklet :D

I have to agree, I'm not sure if this has any really use as an educational tool and I don't really see anything new going on. What makes conflict so horrible is that people get hurt or die. The only thing left for the player is the violence and the rush with out any of the consequence. Being able to play both sides doesn't seem to really make sense to me either. There are many games that allow players to play both sides, but never seem to shed light on the cause or result of conflict.

This just seems like pure entertainment. I think something that was more like the Oregon Trail, filled with strategy and problem solving would be more interesting and provide more benefits to viewers.

can you tell me how to play the shootout game.

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Ewan McIntosh is the founder of NoTosh, the no-nonsense company that makes accessible the creative process required to innovate: to find meaningful problems and solve them.

Ewan wrote How To Come Up With Great Ideas and Actually Make Them Happen, a manual that does what is says for education leaders, innovators and people who want to be both.

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School leaders and innovators struggle to make the most of educators' and students' potential. My team at NoTosh cut the time and cost of making significant change in physical spaces, digital and curricular innovation programmes. We work long term to help make that change last, even as educators come and go.

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