I chose to play Community in Crisis. Community in Crisis is the second game in the Read to Lead series, which addresses engagement, literacy and career-awareness simultaneously. According to the description, it is designed to 5th grade Common Core State Standards in Reading Informational Text, and is ideal for school-day, after school-, and summer programs. Community in Crisis gives educators access to 40+ flexible hours of game-based learning and project-based activities. Students play the role of executive director of a community organization.
The simulation takes place in Port Douglas. Hurricane Dante has recently damaged the town. The staff of the community center are responsible for assisting community members in their recovery efforts.
I was given two choices and played the Not It episode. There are two main issues in this episode that the community center director (player of the game) has to address. One is that no one wants to clean up the snack room. The other is that no one wants to work with a client named Herb. Everyone claims "not it" in both cases.
There is not a lot of direction when you start the game. There really isn't any. I figured it out after a few missed clicks but 5th graders made need some direction in the beginning. Once you get used to playing the game, it is very easy and students should be able to complete the activities independently.
Community in Crisis works on a lot of different skills. Some that I noted were diplomacy, writing, note taking, and problem solving. Students must complete each task before they are allowed to move to the next item on the to-do list.
My only complaint about CiC is that you are rarely given choices of what to do or say. It would be very easy to click repeatedly to get through most of the simulation. I think it would be better if students were sometimes allowed to pick the less diplomatic or appropriate response to a situation in order to see what the consequences were.
I did like that the game gave you the option to print at the end so students could turn something in to the teacher to show that they completed the assigned activities.
I may play a few more episodes to see if this is something I feel my 6th and 7th graders would enjoy and benefit from.
There’s a new client at Common Ground and nobody