Are they hidden under rocks?

People often ask me where I get ideas for gameful experiences or new ways to present content. My answer ... honestly ... they are everywhere! You just have to get into the habit and mindset of looking at things through the gameful lens.

I look at almost every encounter I have during the day as a learning experience. I ask myself tons of questions. How did that go? Was it a good experience or bad one or just a meh/OK/zzzzzzzz one? What made it that way? See where I'm going?

I debrief things and mull them over in my head and see how they felt. Anyone can share content and information but for learning to happen, the learner has to process that information, use it, incorporate it into their lives and the best way to make that content stick is to get to the emotions. To really engage them and that happens through doing and connecting, not just dumping content in front of them.

The logical brain is great and it can stay focused on information, but only for a limited time before it gets tired and/or the emotional brain drags it away from its studies. There are a lot of distractions in the world and frankly the emotional part of your brain is extremely prone to wandering off. But it is also much more likely to stick with something if it is really interested in it. If there is an intrinsic motivation at play, a wonderful feedback loop is created in the brain that keeps it wanting more.

So back to the original question. Where can you get ideas for ways to make your learners experience better? Everywhere! It just takes some practice and a shift in your mindset to start noticing how other experiences you encounter affect you. Then dig a little deeper and think about how or if you could transfer and actual idea or variation of an idea to one of your challenging moments in your sessions.

If you would like to explore this process further, stay tuned for my upcoming 4-week course called Purposeful Play which will be rolling out in the new year.

(Photo by Wil Stewart on Unsplash)