Call of Duty may help children in school


SCOTTISH teachers have been urged to use video game Call of Duty to help teach children.


A senior PE teacher told a conference that computer games such as the violent shooter reward children for their determination and taking part.


He said the same “exciting” approach used in Call of Duty could be applied to teaching sports such as basketball.


A top academic told the same conference that lessons learned from the multi-million selling game could result in more responsible and independent children.


Aberdeen PE teacher Iain Stanger, was speaking at a meeting of the Scottish Association of Teachers of Physical Education (SAPTE).


According to a report in education magazine TESS, he said: “In these games, kids get rewarded for their tenacity, their participation.


“If something goes wrong they go back and they try it again. I think it’s about trying to reward kids for that.”


He added that the same approach should be taken to sports such as basketball, and recommended that children be allowed to enjoy the excitement of playing first before having to concentrate on learning technical skills.


He said: “That’s what happens in these video games. They go in, they play, they’re maybe not successful but they go: “This is fun, it’s exciting, I want to get better at this and learn these skills.”


But Mr Stanger warned that the gaming culture could also have a negative effect.


He said: “There is a danger in this world where it’s, ‘Oh, I’m out, I’m dead – I can just start all over again.’


“There are potential benefits, but I’m also worried that the whole gaming culture has impacted on resilience. There’s no consequence of giving up, because it’s just ‘reload and start again’. You can’t stop a game of football and say, ‘Hold on, we’re losing 3-0, let’s start again.”


Len Almond, former director of physical education at Loughborough University, referred to recent Canadian research into the educational aspects of computer games.


He said: “The games expected kids to explore and find things out for themselves and have creative responses, and they could come back and correct their mistakes.


“I’m not saying children should play more computer games, I’m saying we need to learn the lessons and apply them.


“We’ll have more responsible and independent children.”