Experiential learning theory posits that we retain much more knowledge when we do or experience something first-hand than when compared to reading or hearing information. Creating an experiential learning experience as a learning tool not only increases the retention of information, it also encourages critical thinking.
The Great Fire of London web game, developed for the Museum of London to commemorate the 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London, introduces the player to London just before the fire breaks out. The game follows the story and actions of two characters who live through the events of the Great Fire and what happens afterwards.
By placing the player at the heart of the game so that they play seeing through the eyes of the characters, experiencing what happened and having to react to different situations, they have a much higher recollection of the events and are more engaged and attentive to the information they’re receiving. Interactive gameplay sections, with quizzes and mini-games, then offer the opportunity to put that knowledge to work, and it’s this action that makes the key learning points more memorable.
Making the learning experience personal and ‘hands-on’ creates a more memorable impression.
Using educational content in the creation of interactive stories and experiential learning experiences enables you to cater to different types of learners who respond better to different types of learning approaches. You can engage multiple senses simultaneously to make the information more accessible and easier to absorb.
By taking a compelling story, giving the player a sense of urgency and purpose, and focusing on core elements, you can establish enjoyable gameplay that conveys and concretes important information to players.