Belgium’s Flanders mergers video games into mainstream education. The Flemish Department of Education and Training is the second European government ministry (after Poland) to recognise the value of merging video games into the classroom, by commissioning the Game.Learn.Grow toolbox, developed by Arteveldehogeschool and Mediawijs.
The toolbox serves as a practical guide for teachers in both elementary and high school with more than 30 ready-to-use activities for various age groups, including discovering ancient Greece in Assassin’s Creed, rebuilding their school in Minecraft, lesson sheets, and teacher tools to develop their own video game-based activities.
Spokesman for the Flemish/Belgian video game sector David Verbruggen said “We’re delighted with the Game.Learn.Grow toolbox and want to thank the Flemish Department of Education and Training, Arteveldehogeschool, and Mediawijs for making this possible. Here’s hoping the tools lead to an ever-expanding database of quality, game-driven content that prove that games in the classroom are here to stay.”
ISFE CEO Simon Little said “It is extremely exciting to see another European government recognise the value of video games to education in this way. We know from our Games in Schools project that video games have an exciting role to play in the classroom, inspiring an interest in STEM, equipping students with digital skills, increasing student engagement and learning outcomes, developing team-building, problem-solving and mental agility.”
ISFE’s Games in Schools teachers’ handbook has now been added to Klascement, the official teachers’ platform in Flanders.
The Flemish Government has also just announced a €100,000 fund to support the Flemish video games sector during the pandemic. Whilst the sales of video games already on the market skyrocketed during lockdown – used by players for education, fitness, entertainment and to stay connected with friends and family – companies with games still in development have been impacted by remote working, employee sickness and much-delayed launches. Flemish Media Minister Benjamin Dalle referred to the thriving and innovative games sector in Flanders and the importance of investing in its video games companies.
[image: Alex Haney]