Lucas Gillispie Interview | Gaming and Badging


So Tim obviously spends a lot of
his time talking about badging and credentialing and part of that,
a small part of that, is obviously engagement in his classroom,
and so that brings us back to maybe some of the games and
game based learning in the classroom. So who do you think benefits most
from games in the classroom?>>Everybody.
>>Yeah?>>Yeah, I mean let’s put it this way. The students are going to be more
engaged if there’s any kind of gaming. Teachers have to set it up so
that it’s not on the front end setting up something new is
always going to be more work intensive. But if they set it up correctly the point
is for them to do less work, and for the students to do more work. So if they don’t plan that in, then yes
it’s gonna be more work for them, so it’s not gonna be as fun. But if they set it up right,
then it’s gonna be more entertaining for them, because why can’t
they play the game too?>>Does that resonate for you?>>I’m not motivated to play games,
actually.>>Why not?>>[LAUGH]
>>No thrills.>>That’s so funny.>>What’s so funny?>>[INAUDIBLE] No thrills. So why aren’t you motivated to play games?>>I don’t want this to be on camera! [LAUGH]
>>All right, how about this.>>All right, well, Bill.>>I mean, I can explain myself,
but please don’t put it in there. [LAUGH]
>>No, it’s all live. This is all being done live. So there’s no-
>>It’s live stream. [LAUGH]
>>Times Square, right now.>>This is the PD right now.>>[LAUGH]
>>The future of [CROSSTALK].>>They’re all logged in. I changed that newsletter,
I gave them that link.>>[LAUGH]
>>They are ready to go.>>So, I do think that sometimes there can
be competition, it’s generally social. Generally if it’s individual, you’re at
least increasing in skill as you go along.>>Okay I agree with
the competition thing. I can get into that. I’m playing a game and
somebody else is playing the same game. I want the better score. [LAUGH]
>>[LAUGH]>>Well, obviously, Kim touched on that a little bit. Really focused more on badging but another
person we interviewed really spun that badging in his professional development
for the districts that he’s working in. He’s really working on gearing
that towards the professional development he’s doing. But that really didn’t start until
he went down this path of mixing, he’s a gamer, and he’s a teacher,
and somehow those worlds collided. And now he’s an expert in the field as
far as gaming the classroom, and it was a guy by the name of Lucas who sat down
with us and shared a really cool story.>>My name is Lucas Gillispie. I’m an educator here in North Carolina. Been working in North Carolina in
education for about 17 years now. I started out as a high
school science teacher. And then moved to the district level
working with instructional technology so I have some background
at the masters level. Instructional design,
instructional technology. And now work as the director
of academic and digital learning for Surry County
schools in northwestern North Carolina. My primary role is I work with teachers, with professional development,
partner with them in the classrooms as they’re integrating digital
learning into that space, and just kind of help them use technology
to make learning fun and engaging.>>And you also, EduRealms, is that
also what you do on the side as well.>>Yeah, so that’s an infrequent
place that I blog, but basically my place where I put all of
my resources, what I go around and work with teachers, especially in
the areas of games and learning and integrating games in the classroom. So that’s sort of my hub for keeping
everything in one place and organized.>>Okay, great. So one thing that I think is fascinating
is how you incorporate Minecraft and Lord of Warcraft into lessons or
encourage others to do so. What does that look like?>>Wow. It’s amazing, because one of the things
that I tell people about games and why they’re really good and
powerful for learning is that so often we teach subjects and
content in isolation. And a lot of times we lack that
relevance and the context for learning. And so the beauty of games and leveraging
games in the learning space is that the games themselves give us the context
for learning which is really powerful. So it’s automatically like I have
an excuse to learn this concept because it’s part of the game
that I’m experiencing. Either by myself or with my classmates.>>Obviously you have a strong,
long gaming background. What advice could you maybe give to a
teacher who interested in bringing gaming into a lesson or a class or a district
that maybe doesn’t have that background? What are maybe some first steps, or
maybe some things they should think about if they wanna go down that road,
cuz they see the value in it.>>Yeah, that’s a great question,
and I get asked that question a lot. So I’ve come up with kind of a list of
things that I recommend that educators do. One, if you’re really
interested in this but it’s a little foreign to you,
I say do what James Gee did. You read his book, what games have to
teach us about learning and literacy. He tells the tale about seeing that
there’s something about this gaming thing that appeals to his kids, or
his son I think it was at the time he wanted to get started,
he wanted to explore that. And so he goes and
picks up a game off the shelf. And when you do that, do what I call it,
putting your teacher lenses on. Play the game and enjoy it, but at the same time look at it
through the lens of pedagogy. And think like, okay,
this game has to teach me something. Cuz we’re way beyond Pac-Man these days. Games are incredibly complex, and you don’t just start out
knowing how to do everything. World of Warcraft is a perfect example,
and something that when I was studying instructional
design this lightbulb came on to me. I was like my gosh I was studying
all these great theories about the instructional design process yet
these game developers had it down. They nailed it because they know that they
give you a little bit of information, a little skill that you go and
master that skill. Once you mastered it,
they ramp up the challenge and at the same time they give
you new skills and so I tell teachers just get a game and think
about it through the lands of learning. Think about from the content perspective
or about how that game teaches you and try to think what that
translates to in the classroom. So that’s one thing, get your
administration, once you’re kinda ready to move on talk to your administration and
initiate what the goals are. And then get your IT staff involved, if
it’s gonna be certain, World of Warcraft, probably need the IT staff involved
because there’s gonna be some filter, firewall type stuff you’re
gonna have to navigate. And then your students,
your students are your primary resource. You’ve got all this
brilliance in your classroom, all this untapped potential sitting
in front of you if you’re a teacher. And bring them on board and
let them take some ownership and guide that process too, and
you’ll be amazed, right.>>And what is Epic Academy
that I saw on your website?>>So that’s my new experiment. So Epic Academy is a program that I’ve
started here in Surrey County schools. Where we’re taking to gamify
professional development, and use a quest based
learning with teachers. So it’s fully online,
teacher’s come into the system, it’s very game like in it’s design,
and kind of co-ops a lot of terminology and
stuff in the game world, but, players, teacher players embark on quests and
these quests are like mini chunked lessons that build in
complexity one after the other. And so, for example, my favorite. One of my favorite ones. We have a series of quests that are all
about Twitter, and leveraging Twitter for professional learning and building
your professional learning network. And so, it starts off basic. Starts off about what is Twitter and
introduction. And then you begin to use Twitter for
search and research. And then you buy-in more, and with your
next quest you create your account. You go to connect to other
educators in the next quest, and then ultimately you’re sort of culminating
quest is to participate as an active participant in a Twitter chat
around a particular topic. Once teachers have gone through,
they share artifacts and evidences of each of these steps
along the way, or reflections. They unlock a badge, a twitter badge
that we as the district certify as they have done these sort of things and
that we issue them that badge, and then they can go and choose other quests. So it’s been really awesome
to watch how teachers are navigating that space and
it’s sort of anywhere, anytime PD through them and
the feedback’s been really good so far. So, we’re expanding it now. I’ve actually brought teachers
in to start creating new quests. So now I’m bring them in
to create the new PD. So they’re creating the PD that their
colleagues will participate in. So we’re adding in badges for
all the Google apps. Stuff that we’re using
where Google Apps district. We’ve got apps for augmented reality,
that one of the teachers is developing for us, coding, Skype in the classroom,
it’s awesome. So it’s really cool. And so we’re actually tying in, not only do they get the badge and the
ability to show off that, but they also get CEUs based off of their experience
points they accrue in the system.>>That’s really cool, Lucas, and that’s something I know a lot of our
teachers were interested to maybe reach out to you about or
get more information on. Because we’re actually
charging them with leading professional development in their district
so things that we’re teaching them, we want them to go out and
lead professional development. That’s something they may be interested
in, kind of motivating their staff or their team with. So, as you continue to develop that,
keep us in the loop, and-
>>Yeah, will do.>>Let us know how we can
may be get involved in that. Yeah, I’d love to. I’d love to share. So, we can have that conversation as
well and like any of your teachers, tap me as a resource and
I’m more than willing to share everything we’ve learned so far and ups and downs,
dos and don’ts, and that sort of thing.>>That’s great. Well, thank you very much Lucas,
enjoy your snow day out there and->>[INAUDIBLE]>>Relax as much as you can.>>I’m gonna, I’m gonna. This would be some gaming time instead,
this is great. [LAUGH]
>>All right, we’ll see you, buddy.>>All right, take care, guys.

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