School teachers often struggle to find effective and engaging strategies to teach content and promote reading, writing, and digital skills among students. Traditional teaching methods often fail to capture students’ attention and motivate them to learn, leaving many students disinterested and disconnected from the learning process.
Luckily enough, interactive fiction is a form of writing that can be easily adapted to interest learners in curricular content and teach language while promoting the development of cognitive and interpersonal skills.
The course will introduce participants to the world of interactive fiction, and explore how they can be used to teach content and promote student engagement and active learning.
Interactive fictions are stories that allow the reader to participate in the plot and shape its outcome through choices and actions. These stories can be presented in various formats such as choose-your-own-adventure books, gamebooks, text-based games, and multimedia applications. They combine narrative elements with interactivity to create an engaging and immersive experience for the reader/player.
During the course, participants will discover how they can use active fiction in their classroom by having students read stories specifically designed for an educational purpose, or even by writing their own fiction in project-based activities.
Through the analysis of relevant case studies, they will understand how interactive fiction can be exploited as a tool for language learning and teaching content, or to foster soft skills such as empathy and emotional understanding, while promoting critical thinking and problem-solving abilities.
Participants will learn about the structure of interactive fiction, how to create branching plots and storylines, and how to use ICT tools for digital writing. By engaging in practical activities, they will experience the educational power of interactive fiction in their own person, writing their own branching plots and short gamebooks in both analogical and digital formats.
By the end of the course, participants will feel confident to design and implement effective learning activities using interactive fiction. They will have enriched their teaching toolkit with an effective strategy to teach their curricular subject while fostering student engagement and active learning.
Note: Although many activities of the course only require writing with pen and paper, participants are encouraged to bring their laptops for online research and to explore digital writing.
The course will help the participants to:
- Discover interactive fiction and its potential applications in education;
- Create branching plots and digital text-based adventures;
- Design engaging learning activities by having students reading or writing interactive fiction;
- Implement game-based learning by designing puzzles and riddles;
- Use interactive fiction in the classroom to teach content and languages;
- Promote reading, writing, and digital skills by engaging students with interactive fiction;
- Explore the use of interactive fiction in fostering soft skills and emotional understanding;
- Promote student motivation and active and social learning.
Day 1 – Introduction to the course
- Introduction to the course, the school, and the external week activities.
- Icebreaker activities.
- Presentations of the participants’ schools.
What is Interactive Fiction?
- Choose-Your-Own-Adventure and gamebooks;
- Using interactive fiction to promote reading and writing;
- Interactive fiction and foreign languages;
- Fairy tales and their structure;
- Activity: Write your first branching plot.
Day 2 – Storytelling and branching storytelling
- The hero’s journey;
- Structuring interactive fiction;
- Models of branching stories;
- Using interactive fiction to foster soft skills, emotional understanding, principles, and values;
- Activity: Write your own (short) gamebook.
Day 3 – Digital text-based adventures
- Text-based adventures;
- Using interactive fiction to train digital skills and creativity;
- ICT tools for digital writing of branching plots;
- Activity: Write your digital text-based adventure.
Day 4 – Interactive Fiction in education
- How to Design Learning Activities with Interactive Fiction;
- Teaching content and EU-Content with Interactive Fiction;
- Activity: Create a learning project on your curricular subject.
Day 5 – Interactive fiction and game-based learning (GBL)
- Activity: create a learning project on your curricular subject (continuation of the activity of the day before);
- Riddles and complex scenarios;
- Designing puzzles and escape rooms;
- Sharing of created projects.
Day 6 – Course closure and cultural activities
- Course evaluation: round-up of acquired competencies, feedback, and discussion;
- Awarding of the course Certificate of Attendance;
- Excursion and other external cultural activities.