In this project we worked during the Language and Literature class with Secondary Education students, using the video game “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”. Participants, through the recreation in written form of the adventures lived within the video game, became aware of how the same story could be explained transversally through different formats and expressed in many different ways by using different languages.
In this project we analyzed an experience conducted with students in year 1 of ESO and the video game Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, of the Harry Potter series, a character that comes from the literary world but that has also been adapted in film.
The teacher compiled a mission list to situate students at different points within the game and help them advance more rapidly, solving a greater number of tasks.
At first, the main objective had been set as the establishing of relationships between the video game and other media in which Harry Potter has been broadcasted. However, as the workshop progressed, teacher and researchers also became aware of the powerful possibilities offered by the use of the video game itself.
Finally, and in order to work contents in the Language area related to writing, we decided that participants, based on the adventures lived with the video game, should create texts of a varied nature with the aim of publishing them in the class newspaper, El Profeta.
When we use video games in the classroom it is important for the teacher to have played previously. The knowledge of the video game acquired transforms the teacher’s role, who becomes an expert capable of organizing activities around it.
Harry Potter’s story is presented through different media. This capability for stories to be able to go from one medium to another turns adventure video games into the ideal tools to acquire new discourses associated to multiple literacy means.
Although at the beginning we assumed the educational value of this video game laid on its power to develop the narrative thinking process, during the workshop we perceived Harry to be a character who taught not only how to tell stories but also how to analyze and solve the problems hidden behind the plot of his adventures.
Agreement of collaboration between the University of Alcalá and the video game company Electronic Arts (EA), within its Corporate Social Responsibility Plan. Date: June 2009.