There are lots of games out there for learning everything from basic math to French. These games are usually fun and were almost always designed by teachers who want to help you learn.
However it’s important to ask the question “Do they work?” Are they an effective way to learn a language?
What Do You Learn When You Play Monopoly?
To find out if they work, let’s first take a look at game you have probably played – Monopoly.
Monopoly is a popular board game, where players compete to buy real estate and collect rent. So is it an “educational” game?
Well it does teach about commerce, counting money, and property ownership. But teachers don’t use it very often in classrooms.
First of all it’s just way too slow. By the time any of the kids are ready to buy Park Place or Boardwalk, their buses have already left for home!
How Much French Would You Learn By Playing French Monopoly?
Monopoly is a popular game in many countries including France. So if you wanted to learn French, would playing the French version of Monopoly help you at all?
Well it would probably help a little bit. Just don’t have any delusions that every hour you spend playing French Monopoly will teach you very much French.
When you really want to learn French, you need a learning method that works fast enough so that you start having fun talking French, then get excited about it so you don’t give up.
Most Educational Games Are Just Games
Asking a teacher if his or her favorite educational method really works or not is a good way to start a fight at a teachers convention.
Educators in general do not check to see if what they are doing really works.
Since they rarely check to see whether or not their methods work, they rarely make the corrections necessary to improve their systems.
Most French Learning Games Will Teach You as Much as French Monopoly
I’ve talked to a lot of people who have used games to help them learn French, and the general opinion is that these games are fun but aren’t effective ways to learn French. You do learn a little bit, but not enough to justify the time spent.
So if you want to play Monopoly, and you are learning French, then by all means get the French version and enjoy the game. But remember that you’ll spend a couple of hours to learn what you could have learned in a few minutes with our program.
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Last Updated: November 3, 2011