ESL etc.

Global Issues and Activism in English Language Teaching

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3rd World Farmer and Adventure Ecology

September 5th, 2007 by Dave · 2 Comments

3rd World Farmer – This is a neat game simulating being a farmer in the third world. It’s easy to play and students could just jump right in. You choose which crops to plant and which animals to raise, and each year you earn money and encounter random events. You can also buy tools, send kids to school and even pay for community improvements. It’s pretty fun, and there is a decent amount of reading, especially in the random yearly events.

I think it would work well as a group activity, with four or so students deciding together how to run the farm. Because it’s turn-based (each year is one turn) they could discuss their decisions for as long as they needed to and read at whatever speed they were able to.

Adventure Ecology – I’ve only barely scraped the surface of this one, but it seems pretty incredible. It isn’t so much a videogame as it is a curriculum framed within a videogame. Students are enlisted to join a band of adventure ecologists and are given real-world assignments that help them learn about global warming, energy consumption and so on. At the various checkpoints, students get assignments based on their preferred learning style. Assignments are provided as PDFs and range from writing a song to conducting a survey. There’s also a club where students can share their work, but it is currently closed.

As far as using it in class, a teacher could group students by their assignment preference and have them work together. I’ve only looked at the assignments for the first checkpoint, but there seem to be a lot. One thing to bear in mind, though, is that there is a moderately lengthy introduction and sign-up process. A teacher could register, though, and simply give students the assignments without using the website.

via Larry Ferlazzo’s blog

Tags: blog · ESL activity · global issues activities · the environment · video games

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2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Larry Ferlazzo // Sep 8, 2007 at 9:29 am

    I’m writing to all the ESL-related blogs that are on my blogroll. I’d like to invite you to consider sending in a post from your blog that has appeared within the past few months, or that you will be writing in September, for inclusion in an ESL “Carnival” that I’m hosting.

    A Carnival is basically a collection of posts from various blogs on a selected topic. All you have to do is pick a post you’ve written sometime over the past few months or one that you will write in September that you think is particularly insightul or helpful and that’s related to teaching English Language Learners. Send the link to me by Sept. 30th and I’ll post the collection shortly thereafter.

    If there’s interest, we could continue this monthly or quarterly, each time hosted by a different blog.

    Here’s a post I’ve written announcing it:

    And here’s a link to a recent “Carnival of Education” to give you an idea of what a Carnival might look like:

    Larry Ferlazzo

  • 2 Dave // Sep 9, 2007 at 10:11 am

    Thanks Larry!

    I’m not sure if I’ve got anything appropriate, as most of my posts right now are just links, but I’ll keep the carnival in mind.


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