Start about by discussing with students: “What is an apprentice?”
Apprentices are learners. An apprentice learns by doing. Apprentices also carefully observes how the masters do it. They seek guidance and feedback from masters to help improve their own skills.
Explain to your students that Gamestar Mechanic has an Apprentice Badge that, when earned, shows you are ready to call yourself a game design apprentice. This badge is portable (part of Mozilla’s OpenBadge movement), you can now show your commitment to others in the Gamestar Mechanic community, AND to fellow designers around the world.
1. Ask your students to go to the Apprentice Badge in their Workshop. Tell them that they will start by going through the first 3 Requirements before you stop as a class to discuss.
If they haven’t already played through the first Quest (Addison Joins the League), they should do so to complete Requirement 1.
2. Once students have completed requirements 1-3, stop them so you can have a short class discussion. The questions in requirement 2 will help them think about what they learned in the Gamestar Quest:
3. Before you move onto requirement 4, put students in pairs. This requirement is all about giving feedback on a game. Sometimes it’s easier to give feedback when you have someone else to brainstorm with. Have each pair choose a game from requirement 4 that they will review. They should play the game together and then answer the questions together. They can each use the same responses in their own accounts. If you have time, pairs can share their responses with the class.
4. For requirement 5, students have to make a game that is a gift. Ask them to make the gift game for their partner from the previous exercise. They might want to interview their partner about what kinds of games they like.
5. In requirement 6, partners will help each other to fill in the questions by giving each other feedback on their gift game. They should play the gift game and talk about something they liked, something they didn’t like or were frustrated by, and something they would change.
6. Now students are ready to make changes to their gift games in requirement 7. Give students time to iterate on their games, editing according to the feedback they got from their partner.
At this point, students will submit requirement 7, thereby submitting all their work for the Apprentice Badge. If they want to make changes to any requirement, they should do so before submitting requirement 7. A team of mentor designers will review the students’ work and give them the badge. Students will get a message in their workshop when a mentor looks at their work. Usually this takes about 1 week.
Ask students about the process of earning the Apprentice Badge. Do they feel like they demonstrated their ability to be game design apprentices? Can they explain in their own words what it means to be an apprentice? What was their favorite requirement? What about their least favorite?