My goal is to have learners design and develop a game based on content for any learning program they may be creating. I guide them through the process, but how do I know that they’re able to implement the game beyond the workshop—back on the job?
This uncertainty is why expectations are so important—they’re the key to succeeding in any kind of learning, particularly an Essentials Series class. The facilitators are giving you what you need to know to get started, but you need to take the next step. Ideally, learners should bring their own expectations and needs to the learning environment. Before any learning program, ask yourself, “What is my responsibility as a learner in the 21st century?”
Informal learning also plays a big part in getting the most out of formal learning programs. How we grow our skills can be very dependent on informal learning online, whether it’s through searching Google, watching YouTube videos, talking to our colleagues, reading blogs, or connecting with others on social media. All of this helps us do more with the formal learning in which we take part.
During my most recent Essentials of Gaming webinar, Kelly, a participant, reminded me of the importance of integrating informal learning with our formal programs. Without being asked, she took it upon herself to research avatar use and built them into a game template to use in her organization. On the last day of the webinar, she asked if she could share what she had done with other participants.
Kelly had created a beautiful game background using custom avatars and designed a bingo template. Her initiative and creativity gave me a renewed sense of what the Essentials program can be when participants take the initiative to expand their knowledge and skills.
What type of informal learning do you do and how does it improve your ability to perform on the job? To start a dialogue, leave your comments below.
If you want to see what inspired Kelly to take the next step and put a solid game design in place, sign up for the next Essentials of Game Design online workshop. Hope to see you online in the near future!