I am always looking for ways to make learning real and relevant and fun – so I was thrilled when I learned about Fantasy Geopolitics.
Mashable described the game as “Fantasy Football” meets “Model United Nations”.
Students get the chance to decide which countries they want on their “team” – and this requires them to learn about what’s happening in the world if they want to be successful.
How does Fantasy Geopolitics work?
Teachers set up leagues for their classrooms and decide how many countries will be on each student’s team. On draft day students take it in turns to make their selection.
Then for the duration of the game (the teacher decides how long that will be) students are awarded points depending on how often their countries are mentioned in the news, and whether they are mentioned in a favorable light or not.
Students can trade with other students during that time, or drop countries and select ones that haven’t been drafted already.
Steps to take before the Fantasy Geopolitics draft
1. Give the students a few weeks to follow world news
2. Make sure all students have an email address they can use. This allows them to access the game outside of the classroom.
3. Get the students to write down a list of countries they would like to draft. Remind them the popular ones will be chosen quickly, so they need plenty of options. If they don’t have an extensive list to work through you will find yourself waiting while students try to decide on countries to select.
What students think about Fantasy Geopolitics
My students loved playing and the first thing they would ask to do when arriving in class was to check the leaderboard. Here’s what two of them told me after we had concluded the game:
I thought it was great. It gave me a reason to look up and see what was happening around the world. I learned lots about the Middle East and I came in second place!
My experience in Fantasy Geopolitics was great. I spent time reading the news and learned many new things. It was so much fun.
Who should use Fantasy Geopolitics?
This is a great game to play with middle or high schoolers (or even college students!) who are taking classes in Geography or Economics or anything related to current affairs and world politics.
The game works on desktops, laptops, tablets and phones – which means it is accessible to almost everyone.
It does cost – but if you have a few classes it turns out to be $1 per student or even less. And that’s for a full year. They do have various plan options. You can sign up and get a free account that allows you to play with 5 people so that is a good way to try it out and see if it is right for your students.
So – go and check it out at fantasygeopolitics.com and let me know in the comments if you are playing it with your classes.