Next Tuesday LTI will be hosting a presentation by Chrissi Nerantzi (Principal Lecturer in Academic CPD, expert in creative, innovative learning, teaching and assessment from Manchester Metropolitan University) on Playful and Creative Learning. A good opportunity to reflect on what playfulness and creativity mean in an educational context and explore ways in which we can promote it in our practice.
Definition: What is playful learning?
In a blog post by JISC titled “Learning to play, playing to learn: the rise of playful learning in higher education“, Chrissi gives an explanation of what playful leraning means to her:
“Playful learning is using play activities to immerse ourselves and learn, either on our own or with others in a space we feel safe. In playful learning it’s ok to make mistakes when experimenting with new ideas, when challenging ourselves and others and doing things we normally wouldn’t do – which can lead us to surprising discoveries.
Playful learning can happen anywhere.”
Play and Its Connection to Creativity
The “Creativity for Learning in Higher Education” open course, based on the Manchester Metropolitan University’s PgCert and MA in Higher Education in which Chrissi is involved, offers colleagues with an interest in creative teaching and learning to explore three areas that foster more creativity in their practice and their students’ learning experience. One of which is play and games.
As Resnick (2017) puts it,
“Creativity doesn’t come from laughter and fun: It comes from experimenting, taking risks, and testing the boundaries.”
When it comes to experimenting, games are a very powerful learning tool. Games are by definition a space where the rule of the real world do not apply, thus providing a safe space to take risks and experiment with various choices, strategies and outcomes.
Moseley and Whitton (2015) define games as“a safe space in which participants have freedom to make mistakes, learn from failure, play with fantasy and identity, have control over decisions and outcomes”
Interested in finding out more?
Check out Chrissi’s various projects around playful and creative learning:
- #creativeHE Google + community site
- Creativity for Learning in Higher Education open course from MMU
- Head to our dedicated web pages to find out more about Game-Based Learning and related projects run and supported at the LSE.
- Apply for our IGNITE and SPARK grants to support your game-based learning project for your own course or at programme and departmental level.
- Join Chrissi’s session on Tuesday 6th February or LTI’s practical session on Designing Games for Learning on 26th February
Resnick, M. (2017). Lifelong Kindergarten: Cultivating Creativity through Projects, Passions, Peers, and Play. MIT Press.
Moseley, A. and Whitton, N. (2015). Using Games to Enhance the Student Experience. Higher Education Academy