CreativeCulture 4.0 - Transforming 21st century teaching and learning of STEM in Malaysia through creative play and gamification towards Education 4

Lead Research Organisation: Coventry University
Department Name: Ctr for Post Digital Cultures

Abstract

The project aims to broaden and extend the impact of experiential learning through play and gamification as a creative, emphatic and inclusive pedagogical practice in Malaysia towards Education 4.0 responding to Industry 4.0. The project builds on a previous collaboration between Coventry University(CU) and Universiti Malaysia Sarawak(UNIMAS) via the Newton CreativeCulture project, which has produced a blueprint for Gamification for STEM education that includes a suite of playful pedagogical tools and gamified lessons created by teachers for teachers. We identified that sustainable and effective adoption can be achieved by enabling teachers to embed the approach in the curriculum and the empowerment of schools to review, redesign and progress their practices.

Aligning with (1)UNESCO's view that teacher upskilling is one of the most direct means to achieve inclusive and equitable quality education and, (2)STEM Education Policy under the Malaysia Education Blueprint (MEB, 2015-2025) that promotes hands-on inquiry, creative designs and open-ended exploration, we will (1)train teachers in partnership with local Departments of Education, (2)engage students with playful and gamified learning in partnership with local teachers and schools, and (3)investigate sustainable formal adoption, engaging with schools, policymakers, community groups and local industries towards informing policy.

Efforts to improve and maintain sustainable growth in economic development towards a developed status hinge on an updated education system that is more creative. Acknowledging that access to inclusive and equitable quality education is still an impending issue at rural areas in Malaysia, CreativeCulture 4.0 will expand our user engagement, build practices, capacity and sustain creative approaches in participating schools and facilitate continuing dialogues with local and national communities towards realising the impact of creative education on economic development and social welfare.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Title PLAY Canvas for playful learning design 
Description We created a PLAY canvas, a newly designed brainstorming tool, to help teachers plan their gamification materials. It was used during our September workshop with Sarawak teachers. 
Type Of Art Artefact (including digital) 
Year Produced 2020 
Impact Teachers' interest in testing the artefact. 
URL https://www.facebook.com/creativeculturemy
 
Title Remixing Play Flash game cards 
Description Design of games used to trigger creativity that is based on Sylvester Arnab's Remixing Play approach for encouraging non-game experts to design their own games. We have designed over 50 cards containing game inspirations and topic inspirations. The cards will be delivered to the partners physically and also online. 
Type Of Art Artefact (including digital) 
Year Produced 2020 
Impact The previous impact of the remixing play approach was to encourage creativity and co-creativity amongst teachers (previously used in powerpoint formats). These cards are now developed into physical and online versions. The online version is as in the URL provided. 
URL https://remixplay.gchangers.org/
 
Title Video on Deep Learning Pedagogies 
Description We created a video for educators, titled "Introduction to Deep Learning Pedagogies", an attempt to explain why it is necessary to enable student voices and student autonomy in 21st century classrooms. 
Type Of Art Artefact (including digital) 
Year Produced 2020 
Impact Ongoing 
URL https://youtu.be/nQ85IIvWSRw
 
Title Virtual Escape Rooms 
Description Virtual escape rooms - an idea from Gamechangers UK (Coventry), which have been adapted to the local context. The first rollout was conducted during our third annual Gamification Seminar 2020 on 21 December 2020. 
Type Of Art Artefact (including digital) 
Year Produced 2020 
Impact Exposure to the methodology for teachers in Malaysia. 
 
Description We are exploring the barriers and opportunities for the application of gamification in education in the Sarawak State in Malaysia. Engaging with teachers from the various districts in Sarawak and also with the State Department of Education, we acknowledge the motivation for improving and enhancing teaching and learning. The approach was however top-down in the beginning as the strategy was to ensure that we collaborate with the Ministry of Education.

Teachers whom we have engaged with are invested in their teaching practices. They however voiced concerns over the balancing of the national requirements for the curriculum and the much-needed freedom to explore new ways for improving their practices without risking students performance. The CreativeCulture approach champions empathic co-creation for promoting the sense of ownership, agency and autonomy in teacher upskilling and life-long learning. The sessions we have run so far proved to be beneficial to the onboarding of teachers and the department of education into new ways for encouraging creative and innovative teaching and learning.

The pandemic presents challenges in terms of physical engagement with movement restrictions (MCO) imposed in Malaysia. The Covid-19 pandemic has certainly disrupted the original plans for the project. We have had to scale down the physical interactions in the project, carrying out our engagement and investigations online. The central hub for project communication is online, and recorded, to ensure all tasks are carried out efficiently. The biggest drawback is the inability to conduct physical meetings and workshops with team members and teachers (who are the target group for the project). The team has had to adhere to strict movement control advisories which are locally updated by the special Covid-19 committees, at the national, Sarawak State, and university levels.

This sudden change of education structure during the pandemic has brought a tremendous change to the educational programme to go online. Teachers are confronted with the urgent need to adapt to online teaching. The CreativeCulture research team along with the management team from the local ministry of education, have been thinking and discussing the quality of online teaching based on the efficiency and the availability of Internet in specific areas in Sarawak, as well as the online teaching content to support teachers' and students' learning and development.

During the early stage of MCOs, teachers were forced to shift to an online teaching mode overnight. Traditional approach of teaching and learning face-to-face continues but it was done online at a very novice level use of technologies. In many situations and areas where Internet connection is not available at its maximum capacity, most students are deprived from appropriate learning support. In the next waves of COVID-19, schools were closed again. In less than a year, the closing of schools during the pandemic has caused wide-scale problems and gaps inequity in the education system. The abrupt shift to online learning has been challenging for teachers, students, and parents.

There are still some efforts initiated by teachers in Sarawak to ensure continuous support for students' learning and development. Most of the supports are still done physically on an individual basis whereby teachers would travel to students to pass, collect and/or mark homework and assessments. There are also teachers who have started online flipped learning by using free and existing tools and applications. They have also noticed that even with a simple gamified learning approach, students' attention and engagement in online learning could be better sustained. However, when students got used to the approach, they lost interest quite quickly too; due to the novelty factor, demonstrating the need for a more embedded, contextualised, and pedagogically informed intervention/programme. Therefore, the need for upskilling and training of teachers is greater and highly desirable, especially during the pandemic.

To reduce the equality and equity gaps, the CreativeCulture team together with the leading team from the local ministry of education have composed and improved strategies to sustain and to ensure teachers are fully prepared for Gamification in Learning for both online and physical didactics to ensure equality and equity in post-pandemic education system. These include (i) creating accessible materials (ii) choosing adequate technologies and space (iii) record content, video, and audio (iv) instill equity values in designing learning experience (v) understand students' journey and need.

This has required us as a team to be more agile and innovative in the way we respond to the barriers. The creation of CreativeCulture TV (youtube channel) aims to exploit the current trends in online engagement and micro-learning approaches for providing small bursts of learning content. By engaging and onboarding teachers in this way, we are hoping to create a community of teachers who could engage in the dialogues around the use of games and play in education. We are also collecting success stories from teachers who are currently adapting and adopting our gamification approach to inspire other teachers. We are also running webinars - such as the recent Gamification Seminar where teachers and learners were showcased in short 10-20 minutes talks. The team has recently (2021) engaged with nearly 400 teachers online through the peer-to-peer online support, which will be followed up for identifying case studies. Schools are re-opening in March - therefore strategy and planning are still ongoing with the department of Education for access to the schools during the case study implementation stage of the project.

The following strategy is being implemented and is ongoing: (1) creating mini studios that would enable the (2) production of videos about Gamification in Learning, to help (3) teachers create learning games that fit their needs. We have begun to (4) roll out CreativeCulture TV as a YouTube Channel for teachers to learn about Gamification in Learning and (5) website or online storage for content. We have created a (6) CreativeCulture Ambassador Scheme, where local champion teachers have been approached to help get the buy-in and onboard other teachers to try to use Gamification in their own teaching practices. And finally, (7) a CreativeCulture Education Model blueprint to be produced that includes the inclusive, equality, and equity in education leading to STEM and 21st century skills citizen.

We appreciate that there is an appetite for engaging learning resources that teachers themselves could co-create and curate for responding to the challenges in supporting learners who are in marginalised parts of the region. Not everyone has access to online capacity- hence CreativeCulture 4.0 is currently developing Stem-in-a -box programmes for investigating ways for teachers to create physical learning activities that can be delivered to learners and their parents.
Exploitation Route Our open educational resources in various media will be adoptable and adaptable (tools, videos, guidelines). Our training programme will also be adapted by the Deaprtment of Education.
Sectors Education

URL https://creativeculture.my/
 
Description Our CreativeCulture approach in game design thinking and gamification have been used in training - in collaboration with the Sarawak State Education Department. Our approach has also been embedded in the Masters in Learning Sciences at UNIMAS for training teachers in new innovative pedagogies. Our approach has also inspired teachers in their teaching practices where they have created their own gamified resources for use in the classrooms. We are collecting testimonials and videos as part of the CreativeCulture TV (youtube), which will hopefully inspire innovative game-based and playful learning at the various schools in Malaysia. 10 case studies have been developed awaiting the opportunities to be on the ground with teachers at their schools.
First Year Of Impact 2020
Sector Education
Impact Types Cultural,Societal

 
Description Towards impacting the practice of teachers in Malaysia
Geographic Reach National 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Through our social media channel (https://www.facebook.com/creativeculturemy) and our soon-to-launched CreativeCulture Channel on YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCjxzKd2vVJ0QtqzTTJ3lahA), we have reached and engaged with more than 12,000 individuals since its inception. We are collecting successful teacher stories, where our influence as a Gamification initiator in Education, has spurred creative efforts among local educators. One example is a teacher from SK Long Sukang, Cikgu Muhammad Nazmi, who created a commercially available set of play cards to teach English to Malaysian primary school students. His story is here: https://www.facebook.com/photo?fbid=795721677666994&set=pcb.795738590998636
URL https://bit.ly/3pjbHlf
 
Title A catalogue of online tools to help teachers to create digital games, using our methodology 
Description A catalogue of online tools to help teachers to create digital games, using our methodology - Game Design thinking. A blueprint will be published at the end of the project to consolidate all materials and information in one place, and it will be distributed to all teachers in Malaysia through our social media channels. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2020 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact Methods are being used in teacher training and also workshops. 
URL http://creativeculture.my
 
Title ACES impact pathway- based on onboarding, practice building and consolidation pathway 
Description A model for pathway to impact based on the engagement phases (ref. Arnab S. (2020)'s Player's and Learner's Journey). This pathway can be used to inform the design of activities with the communities depending on where they are in the process. 
Type Of Material Improvements to research infrastructure 
Year Produced 2020 
Provided To Others? Yes  
Impact It has been used to inform programme design for many of the activities under GameChangers, CreativeCulture, and ACES. 
 
Description Collaboration with the Sarawak State Education department 
Organisation Ministry of Education Malaysia
Country Malaysia 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution We are working closely with officials at the Sarawak State Education Department. Two officers are officially named as project collaborators in our Research management system.
Collaborator Contribution Training activities with teachers from the different schools within the Sarawak State. Through the Education Department, we have conducted a three-day training workshop on Gamification for 60 teachers, who represented 30 districts throughout Sarawak. Synchronously, we also ran sessions on resilience development and SDGs with teachers to consider the inclusion of UN's SDGs in the curriculum as part of the co-hosting of activities with the ESRC ACES project.
Impact Data collection on teachers' feedback on the gamification approach. Game ideas from teachers. Plan for continuing engagement as part of case study collection.
Start Year 2020
 
Description Interview by Universitat Oberta Catalonia (UOC) Barcelona 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact An interview with Sylvester on teachers, co-creativity, and playful resources.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.uoc.edu/portal/en/news/entrevistes/2020/055-sylvester-arnab.html
 
Description Interview on ProfessorGame Podcast 
Form Of Engagement Activity A broadcast e.g. TV/radio/film/podcast (other than news/press)
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Sylvester was interviewed on the ProfessorGame podcast (second interview), where Sylvester talked about his new book and also the connection with GameChangers, ACES and CreativeCulture initiatives that have produced international impact. (top 10 of average podcast download rate)
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.professorgame.com/podcast/139/
 
Description Keynote at Gamilearn 2020 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Sylvester (ACES PI) keynoted at Gamilearn 2020, focusing on Playful and Gameful education. Sylvester specifically focused on teachers as game designers for educational purposes drawing from GameChangers, ACES and CreativeCulture.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://gamilearn.webs.ull.es/speakers/
 
Description Keynote at the Joint Conference in Serious Games, Staffordshire, UK 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Sylvester (ACES PI) keynoted at the event focusing on empathic experiential design of purposeful games and gameplay. Gamechangers, CreativeCulture and ACES were showcased as examples of how we can empathically design playful experiences for achieving serious outcomes.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://www.staffs.ac.uk/events/joint-conference-on-serious-games/keynote-speakers
 
Description Online workshop on Gamification 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact We conducted an online workshop on Gamification in Dec 2020, and 180 teachers and educators signed up. It was held as part of a STEM Conference and was carried out virtually.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://bit.ly/3jAZhnq
 
Description Presentations at the IEEE R10 Humanitarian Technology Conference 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact We presented at IEEE R10 Humanitarian Technology Conference on 1st-3rd December 2020, virtually. The team presented two papers at the conference, and both papers are published in its proceedings.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://r10htc2020.org/
 
Description Teacher Training on Gamification 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact We have conducted a three-day training workshop on Gamification for 60 teachers, who represented 30 districts throughout Sarawak. The workshop was held on 2nd to 4th September 2020. The workshop also included activities on SDGs and the curriculum in association with the ESRC ACES project for developing resilience through playful learning
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://bit.ly/3jCxe77