Rose Colored Glasses

Random Thoughts on Instructional Design

Games for teaching social change and incorporating global learning

  • Canaries in a Coalmine – In this traditionally designed game interface participants explore why birds are important in solving environmental unknowns. (
  • Evoke – “is a ten-week crash course in changing the world. It is free to play and open to anyone, anywhere. The goal of the social network game is to help empower people all over the world to come up with creative solutions to our most urgent social problems.”  The game can be played by an individual willing to join a worldwide community of learners or  played with a team of learners who are willing to provide and accept peer review from their team mates and the game community at large.  (
  • Find the Future – this multi-platform game developed by the New York Public Library has participants research, collect and write about library artifacts.  (
  • FoldIt -computer game enabling participants to contribute to scientific research on protein folding. (
  • Free Rice  – website run by the United Nations World Food Programme provides a series of games on a variety of subjects. For each question a player or group (Instructors can go to to learn how to create groups for classes.) answers a number of grains of rice are donated to a needy population. The umber of grains earned is dependent on if a question is answered correctly. The game provided an opportunity for players to learn, have fun and assist in addressing a social problem all at the same time. (


  • Gameful Learning in Global Social Problems – overview of the concept and how it was implemented in a course on Global Social Problems (1 hour presentation).
  • 10 practical ways to bring gamer superpowers to the classroom by Jane McGonigal

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