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Teacher-Gamer Revolution - using Role-Playing Games (RPGs) and World-Building in Education

Transforming student-teacher relationships via 36 life-skills, tabletop role-playing games, supportive co-teaching & peer-to-peer learning.

RPGs facilitating intrinsic motivation & distributed cognition, generates team building and solutionary leadership. 36 literacy, socio-emotional, kinesthetic & creative life-skills help learners with identity & expand trust in teachers. Skill acquisition is guided by the teacher, while students co-create the narrative through collaboration, failure, empathy, negotiation & risk-taking.



HundrED shortlisted this innovation

HundrED has shortlisted this innovation to one of its innovation collections. The information on this page has been checked by HundrED.

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Target group
June 2023
That Multiverse Games becomes an educational discipline that takes on the domain of SEL once and for all. There currently is no such responsibility being assumed in schools. From Green School Bali: “To take this curriculum to the next level, we offer Zach this letter of recommendation to seriously consider his RPG curriculum proposal, his unique vision, passion & commitment to youth education."

About the innovation

Why did you create this innovation?

Originally developed as an extension of The Distinct Self Personal & Social Development Local Programme course cycle – a well-being curriculum program of life-skills electives for adult readiness at The English Montreal School Board in Quebec – RPGs in Schools program has now gone on to form a thriving life of its own in schools across the world by teacher-gamers at all levels of education.

What does your innovation look like in practice?

Glenn Chickering, then Head of Upper School, Green School:
“The main objective of the most recent Introduction to Roleplaying Games class was to explore collaboration in our Middle School with kids 11-14. Students reported in an end-of-class survey, that among 15 collaborative skills they worked with they developed the most enrichment in communication, critical thinking, storytelling, creativity, empathy, risk assessment and a clearer understanding between general skill and expertise. Students were working on finding confidence alone, feeling stronger together and as a team – sharing responsibility for common goals. Role-playing challenged students to take initiative, consider each other’s perspectives and collaborate in a game simulation where their characters would only survive by working together.
The students had a blast: There was perfect attendance by all 12 students for the first five classes and 100% of them reported that they 'liked learning how to play role-playing games.'”

How has it been spreading?

It is spreading through the confidence of teachers realizing themselves to be or training to be teacher-gamers. As a pioneer of this movement, I have created 6 videos that highlight the program's implementation, experimentation and success at the world famous alternative school Green School Bali (in both high school and middle school), as a home school aggregate program for multiple home schools in Bali and also at Pelangi and Empathy Bali (middle schools).

All these RPGs in Schools programs have been connected to Mindfulness ramps and Wilderness Conservation Trips life-skills development programs.

The Teacher-Gamer Revolution has also been successful as specialized community projects featured in the England with LIFEbeat UK youth camps and in Shanghai at Create China Coaching Center.

If I want to try it, what should I do?

Connect with teacher-gamers globally that are currently working with schools to bring RPGs into schools and learning environments by joining the "Teacher-Gamers and RPG Trainers" Facebook Group to ask questions, share your experiences and build partnerships. Follow the @teachergamerhandbook Instagram page. Train at Da Vinci Life-Skills to build your confidence and get a Teacher-Gamer Certificate.

Implementation steps


Check out this video:

Role-Play Gamify regular table-top games
Take a typical game that everyone plays and find a way to make a story out of it. Move competitive games from keeping track of points to generating origin stories and reasons why things are happening in the game. For example, in Settlers of Catan, where are you settling & where are you from? What is the name of your family and what are they known for? What does the color your pieces symbolize? Give each other bonuses for cool story-telling. Check it:
Intro new games weekly- RPGify more advanced games
Get more complex with games and give students new games every week. Have them figure out the rules in groups and introduce new games to each other. Have them create stories and RPGify games in a way that moves away from competition and more towards cooperation. Here is an example of how complex a regular table-top game can get...
Find a Teacher-Gamer in your school staff
There are Teacher-Gamers everywhere, but you might need to look more closely within your staff at school. Or invite teachers to play games together from your school or other nearby schools. One fun way to do it is to invite NGOs and Social Enterprises to visit your school and share their expertise so everyone can learn more skills and get more insight into what is happening locally. For example:
More Creative Writing- Character & World Building
Start building characters with your students and let them choose to be fantastic and interesting. Guide them to realize what skills their characters would know based on where their characters grew up, by helping them to understand the economics of imports and exports from cities. Here is a good place to get started:
Develop lesson plans with a co-teacher gamer
Get the tools you need to run a robust Role-Playing Games experience. One of the best ways is to co-teach with another Teacher-Gamer. You can also get the Teacher-Gamer Handbook, but the key really is to be a teacher first, so you know how inject the learning opportunities into games that you learn to play and therefore teach others to play.
Bring things that motivate you into the classroom
Figure out how to put authentically motivating material into the curriculum. Make sure you fulfill the objectives of the curriculum, but make it creative and enjoy yourself while inspiring teachers and students around you.

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