A Fun Game and Mission to Teach Students About Giving Good Instructions

A Fun Game and Mission to Teach Students About Giving Good Instructions
  • Move the cursor to the ___ (top right, center, bottom)
  • Click the ___ (robot’s head, bathtub, robot mouse, etc.) #___ (2, 3, 4) times

Using Logic to Play the Game

First, students have to learn how to play the game. I specifically chose Machinarium, because there are no instructions and it takes logic to complete each step. Logic is another key vocabulary word I want my students to understand. When they first started playing they struggled with the game and were forced to read my tips as seen above or really learned to work with their partners to pass the first level. After I shared a tip, we had a discussion about playing a game with instructions versus no instructions. They were able to gain an appreciation for good instructions and steps.

While playing, students took notes to help them with submitting their instructions. They loved the game so much they have moved on to level 4 on their own time, which is the last free level. They are really keen about writing gooding instructions for the 4th graders who get to provide feedback to them. I’ll write another post updating you on this step. I’m planning to do something similar with my 4th graders, but I’m not sure what game, program, or activity they will write instructions for yet.

I start the students off with my Game Walkthrough you can see above, which I want them to design in the future (Click here for a version of the lesson plan using the snipping tool and creating screenshots). Right now I am just interested in getting students to realize how helpful good instructions and visual guides, like game walkthroughs, can be.

Challenge: Help students learn the importance of giving good instructions by getting someone to complete a meaningful task with instructions the students write.

cross posted at teacherrebootcamp.com

Shelly Terrell is a Technology and Computer teacher, education consultant, and author of books including Hacking Digital Learning Strategies: 10 Ways to Launch EdTech Missions in Your Classroom. Read more at teacherrebootcamp.com.