My tools for differentiation in Givercraft include elements within the game to support the various gamer types and a Wikispaces resource page for students. Ideally I would have created a differentiation tool that teachers can use on their own but since I am planning to observe students and teachers in the game throughout the week, I wanted to incorporate game elements that I can either facilitate or build and monitor during the game.
My differentiation tools for the various Gamer types:
Theresa and I will be building a maze that serves as a challenge to complete when students misbehave during the game. When students violate the Community Agreement, teachers will have the option of sending students to the maze and when they make it out (it should take them about 2 minutes to complete), then they are able to return to the game. The challenge won’t be difficult as much as it will be time consuming; instead of punishing students by making them “sit in timeout”, I would like to use this tool to have them work or earn their way back to their zone.
Hidden Dwellings and Abandoned Communities
I want to create an underground (or underwater) community or dwelling that wayward Explorers might discover when they dig or wander too far from their zone. For the first scenario, I will make it an underground or underwater dwelling with clues about the person who lived there that students can write about in their reflections. For the second scenario, it will be another community that they stumble upon. I plan to put up signs in this abandoned community prompting students to build memories on sites that have been devastated to help restore it and that community members might return. Students will earn badges for posting screenshots of the dwellings or communities on their wiki; instructions for posting will be placed at each location.
Skirmish at the border
If there are too many Killer gamer types griefing and trolling in their zones, I will stage a random attack by creepers, animals, and monsters at the border of their community. If they successfully beat back the invaders, I will expand their community borders. If they do not beat the attackers, I will take part of their community – build another border to make their community slightly smaller. I will most likely have something valuable in this new territory that could be of use to them (food, herds, precious metals, etc). Students will earn a badge for posting a screenshot of the conflict and the new territory gained.
For the chatty socializers in the game, I will drop clues in the chat that lead them to the Hidden Dwellings, Abandoned communities, or other places of interest in the world. I will also post several scavenger hunt tasks on the wiki and in the chat so they have to find community members who fit the clues and take screenshots; they will of course earn badges for their efforts.
For my differentiation tool outside of the game, I plan to create a Wikispaces resource page for students. On the page will be:
- Announcements about upcoming changes such as transitions between scenarios, what abilities will be changed for students, rules or expectations (community agreement).
- Guides and tutorials (or challenges) for those learning to play the game
- Reflection prompts that will earn them badges if they respond on their wiki pages
- Tips or suggestions about each scenario that will help them understand the game and their daily tasks (based on the rubric)