The last few years have witnessed a growing recognition of the educational potential of computer games. However, it is generally agreed that the process of designing and deploying technology enhanced learning resources generally and games for mathematical learning specifically is a difficult task. The Kaleidoscope project Learning patterns for the design and deployment of mathematical games aims to investigate this problem. We work from the premise that designing and deploying games for mathematical learning requires the assimilation and integration of deep knowledge from diverse domains of expertise including mathematics, games development, software engineering, learning and teaching. We promote the use of a design patterns approach to address this problem.
Our latest outcome is a draft pattern language, which addresses both the process of designing and deployning games for learning and the structure of such games. Our pattern language is suggested as an enabling tool for good practice, by facilitating pattern-specific communication and knowledge sharing between participants. We provide a set of trails as a 'way-in' to using the learning pattern language.
In this talk we review the theoretical foundations of our work, demonstrate the language by following one of the 'trails' through it, and illustrate how this language could be used in a participatory design methodology. We also direct participants to our on-line interactive tools, which allow them to engage with our work beyound the scope of the talk.