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I’m Game for That

March 11, 2013

As technology becomes more pervasive, the need for students to be immersed in technology is increasingly important.  I see so many pre-adults these days who know technology from the end of a phone, but don’t know what to do with anything else, or even how to use what they have to do anything other than get in trouble.  So this makes me feel a bit better about life.

The BSA (that’s the Boy Scouts of America, not the Business Software Association/Software Alliance) says two years of work by “volunteers from the game industry and game enthusiasts across the country” resulted in a list of requirements that will see would-be badge-wearers required to “analyze different types of games; describe play value, content, and theme; and understand the significance of intellectual property as it relates to the game industry” before they are awarded the prized patch (the latter element is why we explained just which BSA we’re talking about here).

… A programming badge is set to be introduced at the BSA’s 2013 Jamboree in July, while badges for computer-aided design, animation and something called “advanced computing” will emerge in 2014 and 2015.

The part I clipped out says that the badge doesn’t necessarily mean you need to do an electronic game… board or dice games could also apply.  But most of the work here will likely focus on computer skills, as well as the art and story work that is associated with most computer games.  I’m enthused about the opportunity that will open up, provided the BSA can find the right mentors to guide the students.

I have a friend who’s a teacher, and he’s fond of asking adults who want to work change the face of education whether they’ve spent 10 minutes straight talking to any kid not related to them in the past month.  The answer to that tends to be fairly unimpressive.  The relationship with a relative is very different from the one kids have with a mentor or boss, and those are the ones that encourage a different level of communication.  It’s not modern youths’ fault that they don’t get a chance to interact with adults, and therefore can’t interact with adults.  Adults need to spend more time with them providing guidance and occasionally just a good conversation.

Technology focus for kids can be wonderful provided there are adults who are willing to invest the time bringing up the next generation.  It can make this country great again, even as the rest of the world tries to take the leadership mantle from the US.

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