This week in class we played Walrus and Would You Rather then wrote claims for our upcoming deliverable. So far, in our second week of classes in a writing class focused on games and rhetoric, we have spent a lot of time playing games, but we have also talked about what games and writing have in common and what we can learn from games. Last semester when I taught this class for the first time I wrote about the rhetorical work the class supported as well as the writing lessons I thought my students were learning, but this year I wanted to share what my students are saying about those connections as well as what games can teach us in general.
Games and Writing
Students noted that both games and writing are good vehicles for sharing information as well as providing entertainment — and the best examples of both can be both informative and entertaining. They also noted that both playing games and writing both require strategic thinking and paying attention to details. To be a good gamer and a good writer, a person needs to be a problem solver and be attentive to the rhetorical context. Another group of students noted that both games and writing are creative endeavors that also help us connect with others. Successful games and written works both have a main idea and goal as well as rules to achieve those goals. What do you think games and writing have in common?
What Can We Learn From Games?
Students argued that games can teach us teamwork as well as critical thinking. Games can teach valuable life lessons, especially those connected to social interactions and coping with challenges, and expose us to different cultures and experiences. Games also help us develop communication skills. Do you think that we can learn anything valuable from playing games?
I am pleased that my students are already thinking about rhetoric and writing in different ways and I can’t wait to begin digging into games in the future. My experience last year and this semester continue to reinforce to me that games offer a lot of opportunity to engage us as critical thinkers, rhetoricians, and writers, so game on!