As Gee argued for the importance of video games as “action-and-goal-directed preparations for, and simulations of, embodied experience,” I believe that Paint-a-Long with supplemental learning activities can lead to a meaningful learning experience. A great way to apply this video game to incorporate elements and concepts in both Gee’s and Squire’s work would be to use Paint-a-Long in conjunction with a read-aloud. The teacher could start the learning experience with a read-aloud on the carpet. Following the read-aloud, the teacher would engage students in a discussion about the topic and concepts of the book. Following this, the students would be tasked with using the free drawing choice on Paint-a-Long to illustrate one of the scenes from the read aloud. This would demonstrate student understanding of the topic while creating a deeper connection between the student and the topic through digital video games. Another great way to extend this video game into the classroom would be to ask the students to use the free drawing section to draw a picture and then on paper to write about what the picture is illustrating. The teacher could offer the students a particular prompt and encourage students to use their creativity and imagination through Paint-a-Long to bring their story to life. Both of these implementations would be a way to enhance literacy skills and knowledge with digital video games.
Gee, J.P. (2007) Good video games + good learning : collected essays on video games, learning, and literacy. Chapter 4: Good video games, the human mind, and good learning. New York : Peter Lang. pp. 22-44.