By - Jeremy Royster

Quest 11: The Importance of Story

The Importance of Story


You are nearing the end of your training, but before you can flesh out your world-saving quest you need to target your player types with an appealing narrative. 


The narrative above that has been embedded throughout Distance Gamification as a model can be summarized as follows:

You are an educational game maker in-training (<–identity) who must complete challenges as you learn to create games (<–obstacles) that will save the world (<–goal).

You’ve learned that narratives can give you choices that determine the outcome of the story.  Now you can inspire an inquiry mindset in your learners with a choice-filled narrative of your own! 

Keep it simple.  What storyline will be appropriate for your subject matter, easily applied to your environment, and imbue a sense of purpose in your learner?  


Write Your Narrative

    1. Refer to these Narrative Source(s) to find helpful information about how to write an instructional narrative. 
    2. Search the Sample Narratives table (below) for narratives written by your peers (Sorted by Subject.)
    3. If you need additional sources, start with the Resource Pathfinder.  (If you find a new one, please make it available to others via the PLN Resources Survey.)
    4. Complete the Narrative Submission Survey when ready. (Your narrative will appear in the Sample Narratives table within 5 minutes.  Search by key word to locate.)
Storyline IdeasSage (Title=Master Smith, etc.): wise, careful, scholarlyThe players will be presented with many tasks during the 5th grade year. When they accomplish the task, they earn points towards their clan!The students [Identity] will have missions (class assignments) that will need to be completed [obstacles] as they gain points, their clan (group of students points combined) will increase. The clan with the most points wins the award of putting their names on the class trophy [reward].
Language Arts, Visual ArtsSage (Title=Master Smith, etc.): wise, careful, scholarlyIn order to solve the crime, the teams must ask the teacher a series of yes-or-no questions about the crime in order to determine A) the identity of the killer, B) the weapon used, and C) the location of the crime. Students are not allowed to name any of the specific suspects, weapons, or location in their questions. In order to make a final guess, the guessing team must answer a trivia question about William Shakespeare and the entire class must ask a combined ten yes-or-no questions.The students must work together with peers in order to ask and answer questions as they attempt to solve the mystery of who killed William Shakespeare.
Game Thinking, MathSage (Title=Master Smith, etc.): wise, careful, scholarly, Spy (Title=Agent Smith, etc.): Clever, tech-savvy,Common errors will lead to a dead end in the maze.Students will face expressions to reduce/evaluate as they attempt to navigate a maze as quickly as possible.
MathSpy (Title=Agent Smith, etc.): Clever, tech-savvy,They will be faced with both mentally challenging questions for the main part but being aware of physical distractions that may bump into them causing them to be stunned and lose precious time that could be used to distance their team from the others. The students will be given questions based on the topic to practice their understanding of the concept while also being kept aware about what is going on around them to mimic them battling other clans who are aiming to thwart their advance.
Game Thinking, MathSage (Title=Master Smith, etc.): wise, careful, scholarly, Spy (Title=Agent Smith, etc.): Clever, tech-savvy, When the students do not get the correct value of the variable, they climb one level down the ladder to master the same concept before they move up again. They will start over after three consecutive trials. The students will face different types of equations to solve as they attempt to climb the ladder to success.
MathSage (Title=Master Smith, etc.): wise, careful, scholarly, Spy (Title=Agent Smith, etc.): Clever, tech-savvy,In order to stack an extra block, the student needs to get the right answer for the system otherwise, he/she can't go to the next question unless he/she watches a short video for the specific method and redo the question to master it. For each wrong question, the student will lose one of the stacked blocks they already had.The students will be given questions about solving a system of linear equations using three different methods; by graphing, elimination, or substitution as they attempt to stack more blocks to get the highest score.
Game Thinking, Language ArtsSage (Title=Master Smith, etc.): wise, careful, scholarlyThey will have to beat the “boss” levels. Interns will progress through each level (which will focus on a different aspect of literature/reading comprehension), and at the end of each level they will have to use the knowledge they gained throughout that level to beat the “boss” of that level. Specifically, one boss will be Curley: They will have to figure out a way to get on Curley’s good side (throughout that level they will be asked questions about characterization and how developing a character helps them to better understand the novel and situations). Boss 2 will be Curley’s wife: They will have to figure out how to dodge Curely’s wife’s advances (this level will continue to build on characterization). The third boss is Slim: They will have to convince Slim to join them in their dream (this level will focus on theme, specifically the theme of companionship in the novel). The fourth boss will be Lennie: They need to make sure George stops Lennie from killing Lennie’s wife (this level will focus on foreshadowing and foreshadowing clues specific to the novel). The fifth and final boss will be George overcoming his internal conflict of attaining the American Dream (this level will focus on conflict in the novel). Their answers will have to be submitted and approved by the author (John Steinbeck, aka, the teacher). If John Steinbeck is not satisfied, he will send the group back to continue refining their ruse to overcome the challenges.You are interns at John Steinbeck’s publishing company who must overcome the boss levels along the way as you attempt to rewrite Of Mice and Men, alongside John Steinbeck, so that George does not have to kill Lennie and instead, George and Lennie can attain their American Dream. If successful, you will win the Nobel Prize in Literature as Steinbeck’s protégé.
MathSage (Title=Master Smith, etc.): wise, careful, scholarly, Spy (Title=Agent Smith, etc.): Clever, tech-savvy,, Voyager (Title=Seeker Smith, etc.): Adventurous, worldlyThey will face the other groups working through scavenger hunt, and have to make decisions about varying degrees of difficulty going that affect the rate of their flow through the game.In pairs, students will face the clock and each other as they attempt to navigate a scavenger hunt across various stations in the classroom.
ScienceArtisan (Title=Maker Smith, etc.): creative, industrious, Sage (Title=Master Smith, etc.): wise, careful, scholarly, Royal (Title=Commander Smith, etc.): powerful, decisive, respected, Spy (Title=Agent Smith, etc.): Clever, tech-savvy,Time = Students will have to work collaboratively to solve all 5 puzzles in 75 minutes.Artisans, Sages, Royalsand Spies will work collaboratively against time to solve 5 puzzles to escape from the Mad Science Teacher's Lab within 75 minutes, putting their knowledge of Lab Safety to the test before the noxious gas overtakes them.



Self Assess

The Narrative Submission Survey is a form of self-assessment.


“The Importance of Story” Quest Feedback

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