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3 Ways to Boost Student Engagement With AI & Gamification

Two robots playing Chess with title 3 ways to boost student engagement with AI & Gamification

Gamification has always been my jam.  If you’re not sure what gamification is, it brings elements of games into the classroom, such as quests, points, and badges.  You may also hear “game-based” learning, which brings games, like Kahoot, or Blooket to your classroom.  I think these two terms overlap, but others will tell you they are two very different things.  The point of both? To engage students in learning.  Let’s look at how AI can help!

Gamification in the Classroom

Gamification can be a lot of work depending on how you’re doing in the classroom.  It takes creativity, and the effort to stick to all the pieces of it.  I gamify my classroom in a few different ways:  creating games around content from popular TV Shows such as Survivor and The Amazing Race, escape rooms, and bringing in games like Kahoot, and Blooket.  As a fan of games myself I find it fun and exciting to bring in game elements for learning.  We all know that when we are passionate about something it makes it a little easier to do.  When I work with teachers I often hear “This is so much fun, but it takes a lot of time.”  Insert artificial intelligence. 

Prompts to Help Gamify!

While gamification can be time-consuming, let’s explore how AI can streamline the process. I mentioned above that I like to create games like The Amazing Race for content in my classroom.  The Great Physics Race is an activity that I’ve been able to create over time.  It has clues, and activities, and is lots of fun. AND… it’s taken me quite a bit of time to put together, come up with the components, and really get it the way I wanted.  

I wanted to see what would happen if I put a prompt into Chat GPT with a similar challenge: 

The Prompt:

“You are an expert at the Amazing Race Television show.  You are an expert at NGSS standards for physics in middle school.  You are an expert in gamification in education.  Take the NGSS Standards and knowledge about the Amazing Race and come up with a game for the classroom.”  Check out the results here

This is very similar to what I came up with but in much less time.  This prompt produces the outline, from here I’d simply ask it to help you with the clues, activities, and much more.  And tada you’ve got gamification in your classroom.  It will still take time to organize and put together, but you can do it in at least half the time, and spend your time implementing it instead; which is the fun part!

How would you turn your content into a game? Don’t be afraid to put the details into a large language model (LLM) and ask for some help.  AI will help you incorporate game elements to gamify your content!  I hope you’ll give it a try!

Create Escape Rooms Using Some AI Tricks

Another way to gamify your content is through an escape room. To create an escape room I believe if you create a story with a problem (like something is stolen or lost) then it is easier to come up with puzzles.  

Here is an example of a story I used for a Photosynthesis Escape Room.  I used Chat GPT to help generate the story.  The story is 80% AI and 20% Human. (AI did the heavy lifting in this one).

Escape Room Story

Want to create your own story? Try this prompt to create a story for an escape room. 

The Prompt:

“You are an expert at creating escape rooms and breakout boxes. You are a classroom teacher. You are an expert at NGSS 7th Grade Science Standards. Please create a story for an escape room around photosynthesis. You do not need to include puzzles, just the story.”

**You would put your standards, grade level, and the content.

Chat GPT likes to give you a story, as well as ideas for puzzles (even when you ask it not to), which is helpful for the next step.  Once you’ve got the story that you’re happy with, and you may have to tweak what the LLM gives you, create puzzles that fit the story.  Use this slide deck and the ideas from Chat GPT to help create your puzzles.  

I know this is the quick version of how to create an escape room using AI, but I hope it starts generating some ideas and encourages you to start to play with AI to help you. Be on the lookout for later posts with more resources and details for escape rooms, we will revisit this topic in the future!

Games!

Lastly, let’s look at how AI can help you create games like Kahoot and Blooket.  

During Tool Tuesday we review Almanack which can help to create different games.  This is a way that AI saves you time, and can provide these engaging experiences in your classroom. 
Another tool to help you do this is Quizalize.  You can use the AI to help you create quizzes and then export them to Kahoot and others.  You can also play using Quizalize and it connects to Google Classroom.  It’s worth checking out.  We will also come back to this tool in one of our Tool Tuesdays!

Gamification Challenge

There are many ways to gamify your classroom, and I’ve given you three today.  

I am challenging you to start playing with AI and gamification, even if it’s just to play with the prompts and see what you can come up with.  You might start with something small in your classroom like turning a lesson into a quest, or you might jump right in and gamify a whole unit. The student engagement will pay off for the time you put in! Please join in on the conversation on Facebook and tell us all about your gamification experiences and how AI helps!

Good Luck

-Stay Curious, Stay Innovative!

AI Transparency: Chat GPT was used to help develop this post.  Chat GPT 5%, Human 95%.  I use it to maximize the readability, as well as make sure there is correct spelling and grammar. Here is the prompt that I used:Prompt: “Read this blog post, DO NOT change the content.  Give me feedback on SEO* as well grammar and spelling (Copy and Paste blog post)” *SEO is Search Engine Optimization. I also asked Chat GPT to create the meta description for this post.

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