Using games for educational purposes isn't exactly a new concept to all of us at Dealspwn, which you can see by clicking here, however I've got to admit that I'm a little bit surprised (in the best way possible) that Britain's Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove, has been praising their use in the classroom, as well as looking into ways in which they could further the teaching profession.
The Conservative MP has already proposed a fair few reforms to the UK's education system, and he recently gave a speech to the Royal Society about the part video games, in particular Oxford professor Marcus du Sautoy's Manga High, might take up in class rooms across the country in the future:
Computer games developed by Marcus du Sautoy are enabling children to engage with complex mathematical problems that would hitherto have been thought too advanced. When children need to solve equations in order to get more ammo to shoot the aliens, it is amazing how quickly they can learn. I am sure that this field of educational games has huge potential for maths and science teaching and I know that Marcus himself has been thinking about how he might be able to create games to introduce advanced concepts, such as non-Euclidean geometry, to children at a much earlier stage than normal in schools.
The Department for Education is working with the Li Ka Shing Foundation and the highly respected Stanford Research Institute on a pilot programme to use computer programmes to teach maths. We have not developed the programme - we are just helping them run a pilot. Stanford says it is one of the most successful educational projects they have seen.
Personally, I think educational games should be included as an everyday part of school life, provided that there are studies which prove that their use will have a positive effect on the next generation's learning process, after all it'd make lessons a lot more fun and could lead to a greater interest in higher education amongst young people.