At the beginning of March, 2017, MEGA has participated in the UNESCO Week for Peace and Sustainable Development that took place in Ottawa, Canada. This event focused on the topic of education on sustainable development (ESD) and peace building became a great opportunity for us to present our MEGA Game and gamification services, display our games and educational robots at an exhibition booth, explore other organizations and innovations in teaching and learning, share knowledge about game-based learning in a workshop and debate, obtain contacts of potential partners, and enjoy the hospitality and culture of Canada.
On the 6th of March, 2017, together with the organization Planeta Océano we delivered an interactive workshop entitled “Hands on Minds on: Connecting teachers and students in vibrant communities on ESD and GCED via modern IT tools”. At the workshop we presented ourselves and our MEGA Game as examples of connecting environmental and educational organizations with young people willing to learn about sustainable development via gamification and e-learning based on collaboration and fun. We were not alone in doing this: Planeta Océano, Microsoft, and ASP-net showcased their examples and innovations in on-line teaching and learning as well. After the introductory presentations we offered the participants to form groups and brainstorm how they can connect and work together in order to create value in teaching and learning by using such IT tools as on-line networking platforms, gamification and “serious games”, and e-learning. The outputs of this group work together with contacts of the participants were then collected and sent back to them. If you are interested in the information shared during the workshop, you can view the presentation used for it here or write us to email@example.com.
On the 9th of March, 2017, we were honoured to take part in a very interesting debate that is closely connected to our core activities. It was entitled “Innovative pedagogies for ESD and GCED: Is game-based learning the future?” and was hosted by the UNESCO Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Education for Peace and Sustainable Development (MGIEP). Together with other panelists, who were specialists in designing and using games in their teaching practices, we explored the concepts of gamification and learning games, the science behind using them in classrooms, and concrete examples of “serious games” and their benefits and value in education for peace and sustainable development. The discussions were very interesting and active, leaving the participants impressed by what gamification and games can offer to enhance teaching and learning and make them more practical, interesting, engaging, and rewarding. If you are curious to know what was presented and discussed during the debate, you can check out the presentation prepared for it here or write us to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Besides the workshop and debate, during the entire period of the UNESCO Week for Peace and Sustainable Development the visitors had had the opportunity to come to our exhibition booth placed just outside the main conference hall and session rooms. There they learnt about how we are using gamification and specifically MEGA Game to transform social / environmental learning into practical and engaging game-like quests, played some of the board games created during the Operation P.E.A.C.E. project, and tested their knowledge on ESD by interacting with ADV3R, our educational robot.
Overall the participation of MEGA in the UNESCO Week for Peace and Sustainable Development was a very productive and successful one. We are grateful to UNESCO and the organizing team of the event for the opportunity to join it and all the support offered during its entire duration. Now we have a lot of exciting work to do in order to convert the discussions and contacts from the event into new learning games and gamified solutions for peace and sustainable development.