Learning from #PokémonGo
Posted July 16, 2016on:
It is an understatement to say that Pokémon Go is a popular game. It has been about a week since its limited release and its rising star keeps rising.
The popularity of Pokémon Go is also a good example of how technology makes human behaviour more transparent.
Stupid people have always done, and will keep doing, stupid things. Those behaviours are now more obvious because the technology brings them to the surface and amplifies them.
The press focused on juicy incidents like accidents or near accidents stemming irresponsible pedestrian or driver behaviour, or using the game to lure unsuspecting victims, or even finding dead bodies.
We should do better as educators. We can critically examine and reflect on what motivates people by unpacking the psychology of Pokémon Go. We can design learning along mobile experiences and pedagogies.
We can also rise above the furore and identify more general principles of instructional design. Martin Weller suggested some ideas when he wrote about how edtech should react to the next big thing.
- Pick the narrative battle carefully
- Extract what is actually interesting for learning
- Recognise the opportunity
- Be experimental
Weller elaborated on each idea and his reflection is a good read.
Another good read is George Couros’ thoughts on how paying attention to the Pokémon Go phenomenon could breed good observation and spur innovative thinking.
If we think and act like innovative educators, we consider possibilities creatively and critically. We focus on the good instead of wallowing in the bad.