The Conduit: A Gamified Classroom Experience for Teens on the Autism Spectrum

A presentation by Greg Macke MS, BCBA, LBA and Jordan Olsen (he/him/his)
Victory Academy and Victory Academy

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About this event

For this session, I would introduce the classroom I teach at Victory Academy in Sherwood, OR and the learning objectives of our particular classroom of middle/high-school age teens on the autism spectrum (functional living skills, social skills, growth mindset, academic growth, etc.). After that, I would describe the gamification process of the classroom and how we used inspiration from programs like ClassCraft to engage the students and get them excited about in-person education amid COVID-19 protocols. I would describe the different ways we have used naturally motivating activities, games, worldbuilding, etc. to teach functional skills such as growth mindset (an hour block where the students can pursue hobbies or play a tabletop RPG with peers), daily living skills (a bounty-hunter-style job board for chores at home), managing resources (the students get paid in gold coins for doing their "job" of being a student. They use these coins to pay "rent," buy snacks, buy cosmetic items, pay taxes, etc.), time management skills (we have an end of the day race called Konduit Kart to encourage the students to get ready to go home quickly), personal safety and responsibility (we have a cardboard-smithing guild with training/responsibility similar to the BSA Totin' Chit), leadership/decision-making skills (we have a class presidency/government body that collects taxes and uses the money to fund classroom policies or endeavors in a model-UN-style choose-your-own-adventure game), fitness/health (we LARP for P.E. with a leveling system for workouts and do "warrior training" beforehand to teach physical/emotional/mental/social health in the context of being a warrior). All of this is encapsulated in "The Conduit," (aka our classroom) where the multiverse converges and heroes of any type or timeline can coexist and grow together.

Learning Objectives

  1. Understanding the utility of gamification in behavioral interventions/education.
  2. See successful examples of gamification in a classroom setting.
  3. Understand the benefits of intrinsic/natural motivation in ABA and education in general.

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