Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Indiana U Researchers: Mindfulness, Positive Psychology, Games for Learning

Examining Reflective Awareness in Gaming Experience
Start time: 10:20am
Until: 10:40am

Presenters: Thomas Fennewald Gabriel Recchia Ellen Jameson

The implications for the Jewish world from this panel include the possiblity of using games and simulations and the techniques they employ to hand down our Jewish prayer "technology" in deeply meaninful ways.  By scaffolding techniques in practicing gratefulness, such as in this game, called Dream Kindlers, users/players practice what in liturgical terms, we call Hodaot - thankfulness/gratefulness.  Note here how well designed games signal techniques we should be considering in Jewish education - whether using technology or not - the act of _practice_ of gratefulness improves psychological impact.  For Games for Change, the learning scientists draw from Positive Psychology.  For Jewish education, we can 1) come to understand the science that is explaining the ways which prayer changes us and those around us - this discursive understanding of prayer practice - a reflective understanding will broaden the reach of the kinds of learners we can engage 2) appreciate the ancient wisdom of our prayer and mindfulness practices and 3) use the kinds of practice inducing techniques that Games and Simulations demonstrate to bring learners into a more personalized, meaningful, and engaging prayer practice.  Yet another way that good science and good games can bring us closer to God.

Rabbi Owen Gottlieb
PhD Candidate, Education and Jewish Studies
Speciality in Digital Media and Games for Learning

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