PowerPoint Game

Game Shows for Learning: Part 1

Posted On April 8, 2013 by Jamie Bernhardt

As a teacher, trainer, or tutor, your goal is to facilitate the development of knowledge, skills or attitudes. If you’re going to make your own learning resource for enhancing learning through synchronous instruction, it should be easy to make, engage your learners, and be easily implemented within a classroom or synchronous online session. Ideally, it would even help make learning fun!

Have you considered making PowerPoint-based game shows?

PowerPoint Game

Have you considered making PowerPoint-based game shows?

Game show-style games can enhance learning activities with multimedia-rich experiences and challenges that engage learners and enhance development of knowledge and skills.

You can obtain and modify a PowerPoint template for this style of game from office.microsoft.com, but you may need a more customized style for your objectives that requires building from scratch. Either way, the first steps are to determine the question and answer types you need and organize the content you’ll need for your questions and answers. This post will show you how.

Overall Theme

Your PowerPoint-based game show can be unique in style or imitate the setup of a popular game show like Jeopardy, Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?, or Who Wants to be a Millionaire?  Either way, make sure that your game style fits the kinds of questions and answers that you plan to use, and make sure that your questions and answers match the learning objectives you set for your learners. If your topic is about gerontology and multiple choice questions match your learning objectives, then you could model your game show on Who Wants to be a Millionaire? and call it Who Wants to be a Gerontologist? You don’t have to give your game show a name, but some names can make the learning experience more fun.

Kinds of Questions

When aligning question types with learning objectives, keep in mind that questions can challenge and teach. They challenge learners by inviting learners to process information, understand the task they are to do (e.g. recall a name from memory), and supply an answer that completes the task. Questions can also teach learners information by providing it to them in the question and then posing a task that requires understanding and applying that information. They can also provide leaners with familiar information and then pose a task that leads the learner to discover new things by applying familiar information.

To align a question type with learning objectives, apply these five general rules of thumb to make sure the game show activity is worthwhile:

  1. The information in the question can be used to inform learners about things they should know and remember even after the question ends.
  2. The challenge built in to the question essentially requires the learner to apply knowledge, remember information, make a decision, or do a combination of these.
  3. Because learners can always guess, there is no guarantee that they will have learned in the desired way. After the correct answer is revealed, instructor-facilitated discussion should explain why it is correct.
  4. When learners work in teams, they can learn from each other, but teamwork alone does not guarantee that each team member learns. After the correct answer is revealed, instructor-facilitated discussion should explain why it is correct.
  5. Plan questions, answers, discussions, and scoring efforts with an eye for whether it will all fit in the allocated time frame, and fit the right kinds of questions in during the allocated time frame.

 

The table below gives the names, definitions, and context of use for the kinds of the questions that work for a game show:

Question Type

Definition

Use When Learners Are To…

(list is not exhaustive)

Missing Answer

Learner has to supply the answer without any potential answer suggestions Identify, remember, reason, count, calculate, apply, discover, compare, contrast, subsume, categorize, relate

Fill-In-The-Blank

Learner has to use context clues to supply the answer(s) that fill in the blank(s) Interpret, recognize, understand, remember, reason, count, calculate, apply, discover, compare, contrast, subsume, categorize, relate

Multiple Choice

Learner has to pick the correct answer from a choice of potential answers Identify, interpret, recognize, understand, remember, reason, apply, discover

Multiple Answer

Learner has to pick several correct answers or all of the correct answers out of a selection Identify, interpret, recognize, understand, remember, reason, apply, discover

Matching

Learner has to match items based on relationships between them Define, compare, contrast, subsume, categorize, relate

Sequence

Learner has to list the answers (from a selection or not) in a certain order Count, compare, contrast, subsume, categorize, relate

True Or False

Learner has to report whether a statement is true or false Evaluate, interpret, recognize, understand, remember, reason

Word Bank

Learner has to fill in the blanks of a statement with words from a bank of potential answers Identify, interpret, recognize, understand, remember, reason, apply, discover 

 

Writing Questions

By figuring out which question types are appropriate for your game show, you have prepared yourself to write your questions and answers. Remember that questions can be used to teach, stimulate performance, assess performance, and lead discovery. Also, you can use graphics, audio, or a video in the question to deliver information that learners need to answer the question. Your question can even require learners to select a detail of the multimedia used. Plus, you might eliminate the need for subsequent instructor-led discussion by including graphics, audio, or a video in the answer slide that helps explain why the correct answer is correct.

Coming in Part 2

Congratulations on making it through Part 1. Once you have written your questions and answers out and organized any graphics, audio files, or video files you will use, you are ready for the next steps. Check out Part 2 to learn how to use PowerPoint to set up your game show categories slide, set up your question and answer slides, set up a score board slide, and link them all together for convenient navigation.

 
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