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Serious games presented in the Future Classroom Lab

The potential of games for learners with special needs was in focus on the "Serious games for inclusion" workshop organised on 13 June 2013 in Brussels. The workshop was co-organised by the SENNet Project and European Schoolnet's Special Needs Education Working Group.

The participants agreed that games are interesting for SEN pupils since the games engage learners in sufficient repetition to ensure that learning takes place; provide life experience, engagement with knowledge and people; and allow pupils to work on their own pace and also make mistakes without irritating others. Games can also help to learn to monitor more objects in visual field and faster, and increase spatial resolution as visual processing, and improve choice reaction time and independent decision making.

Games demonstrated during the workshop

WaiNot, Belgium

  • Environment for pupils with severe mental disabilities: games, learning and communication tools
  • Safe online environment in Flemish accessible via a free login
  • All text is spoken aloud (in Flemish)
  • Activities include: emailing (by using pictograms or using voice recording), reading news, games section, tips on events fully accessible to disabled people

Monkey tales, Belgium

  • Mathematics with remediation/differentiation possibilities
  • 3D fun game (to compete with other fun games) which allows children to acquire math skills and learn at their own pace:
  • Mini games on math allow for repetition of what has already been learned at school (age 7-12)
  • Adaptive exercise (the level of the next exercise is adjusted based on the results of the previous one)

Heelseeker and hyperactivity, Belgium

  • Game “Heelseeker” (Planet Commander) for ADHD patients developed by team of content specialists, commercial specialists (inhouse & external experts).
  • Starting point: ADHD has side effects in behavior: people have difficulties with time management, planning, and social skills, all of which are a burden for hyperactive young people
  • It is a web-based game in Dutch, English and German, for students 8-12 years old, takes 22 hours to play in full – visiting all planets and completing the activities. You can play against the computer or against another person live online (importance of fixing a rendezvous time and keeping to it – role of parents to reinforce and support is important)
  • See video:

Kung Fu Kitchen and Theraplay, GroepT Institute for Higher Education

  • Cognitive and physical challenges in Kinect-based motion-sensitive games used by physiotherapists with patients who have to repeat certain movements (including management system to monitor players’ activities).
  • The games which can be downloaded and used are proof of concept developed according to a user-centred design process. All rewards are positive (unlike games on the Wii which have three lives).

Further reading: