Setting Up Rules and Expectations for Game Play

When students are playing a game, they often won’t behave exactly the same way they do when they are taking a test or listening to a lecture. Students might be completely engrossed in what they are doing, or talking aloud to characters on screen as if they were in the experience, because they are! Players might ask questions about how to do something, even if the person they are talking to is across the room from them. And they might share their successes with others … very loudly.

So, does all your good work on forming and enforcing class rules go out the window? That is not the case at all. However, you may want to revisit these rules to see if they need to be modified.

You should talk about these behaviors before they begin playing. Together, try to find some answers to questions like these:

  • How much noise is too much noise?

  • To whom will learners be able to talk: their neighbor? Anyone?

  • Can anyone “travel” during game play?

  • When working in pairs or groups, what happens when someone hogs the mouse?

  • What happens when someone goes off task?

  • What are the consequences of breaking these rules?

Once you have hammered out a code of conduct, you both will probably be more comfortable going into a game playing session.