General Workshop Material


TESOL Colombia Conference at Universidad La Sabana Chia, Colombia. May 10-13, 2017.

Look below for 1) the presentation, 2) the handout from the workshop, and 3) an active PDF from the workshop

  1. This presentation was given by Wade Alley, M.A. and Lindy Merwin, M.E. Bio’s at link.

2. This is our handout from the workshop

[pdf-embedder url=””]

3.  This is an active copy of the PDF we used in the presentation. Just click on the URL code, link and photo to use.



Jalisco Mextesol, Fall 2016 Universidad Autonoma Guadalajara

Download a copy of the presentation here. Heavy, 300+ mbs. Download only.

IATEFL Birmingham and Baltimore

Here’s what our crowd at IATEFL looked like. What a great conference! What a great audience! (photo by author)

the crowd at our presentation #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

Click here to find the material we presented at IATEFL and TESOL.
Welcome to the general workshop on Gamification. This is the material we used for workshops at IATEFL in Birmingham UK, as well as TESOL in Baltimore. Both events were in April 2016.  See a picture of our workshop in 360 degrees on the home page of our workshop.  Here is a copy of the handout we used at IATEFL.

Should you gamify?  Check out our checklist here.


Gamification is the process of adding game elements and game-like structures to non-game situations, processes, or settings.  The word, at least in the opinion of this author, doesn’t really convey the depth of what this process can help a teacher accomplish.  Better words might be “generating greater student interest”, or “increased class engagement”, or “changing student mindsets”.   The word ‘gamification’ may be weak in meaning, but the process it describes provides a rich opportunity to create better classes, more engaging material, and enhanced student engagement in almost any kind of class or for any subject matter.  Before gamifying any class, facilitators need to know their material, their students, and their own limitations.  Only then, can gamification begin.

One of the inspirations for our gamified courses can be found in the idea that fun is a powerful motivator. Watch the video below.
  Watch more video examples here.
If something as simple as a dancing ‘waiting’ pedestrian encourages a more positive behavior, then what might  little round stickers with these images do?

The Three A’s: Attendance, Attentiveness, Attitude

EarlyBird English Bulldog over British flag einstein
Early Bird 25 pts

Jolly Good! English Only      50 pts

I’m a genius and you’re not 50 pts

These three stickers have helped persuade students to make a positive change.  They represent a small but important part of our gamified process.  In addition to the use of these stickers, we maintain a leader board that we constantly update. This gives the class a competitive element.  Points are added at the time they are earned, and students can see their improvement or gains.  The faster the feedback, the greater the student satisfaction with their accomplishment, or comprehension of issues they may have.

We used a Google spreadsheet embedded in a Moodle html block. The updates take place in near real time.  We have found that the leader board process also makes teachers more attentive to their students needs.  It also compels the teacher to keep abreast with grading and assign meaningful, useful tasks.  The result has been more production on the part of students, increased personal feedback, and happy teachers at the end of the semester, because they have already finished their grading.

leaderboard2 carrace
Standard Leader board
Our experimental leader board.  Needs manual updating

We use Moodle as our LMS.  We have yet to find a gamified platform, so we improvised with Moodle and Google Docs and Sheets, as well as email.We use the campus email system to issue badges. Though Moodle has a badge delivery system, it’s designed for use at the institutional level, meaning badges must be uploaded and issued individually by teacher and per course.  The email system makes things a lot easier.

The badges we do issue were also designed with desired student behaviors in mind.  You can find the badges at this link.  These are the basic tools but by no means the only things we do to make the course more game-like.  That requires a bit of a twist to the standard learning environment, material, and in some instances, routines.  Continue here.


Leave a Reply