I’ve had a few people on Twitter ask me for suggestions of books to read this summer, especially if you’re interested in delving deeper into gamification and/or game-based learning. Here are some I highly recommend and plan on revising this summer myself:
Gamify Your Classroom by Matthew Farber: This books is quickly becoming a seminal read for anyone who wants to start using more games in the classroom. Farber covers the gamut, from game elements to serious video games to gamification to…well, just about everything you might be interested in related to games in the classroom. This is a great starting point!
Explore Like a Pirate by Michael Matera: A component in the Teach Like a Pirate series, Explore Like a Pirate takes you inside Matera’s gamification classroom and is jam-packed with ideas about not just how to use gamification but also examples of quick games that you can modify to meet your needs. Super informative and extremely practical. (I reviewed it several months ago here.)
Make It Stick by Peter Brown, Henry Roediger, and Mark McDaniel: This book has nothing to do with games or gamification and everything to do with how we learn. Peter Brown takes the brain research of Roediger and McDaniel and transforms it into a supremely readable text with real-life examples and real-life teachers. This book will change how you plan and execute your teaching.
Formative Assessment & Standards-Based Grading by Marzano & Company: OK, OK, I’ve heard it from my own local colleagues. Few people find Marzano riveting material for summer reading, but I honestly did. I’m a proponent of standards-based teaching in a traditional school with a traditional grading system. Marzano helped give me ideas about how to approach grading in my own classroom and at least make my own assessments more standards-based within a traditional system. I read it in a day and loved it. (Really.)