I choose YOU, caribou!
This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science.
Did you know that many kids can recognize more Pokemon species than real ones? Megan Callahan of the University of British Columbia does! That got her wondering – could card games improve knowledge of REAL animals?
Try playing Phylo, an educational card game about ecosystems! Phylo cards feature animals and plants as well as natural and human-caused events. Winners create stable, biodiverse ecosystems while sabotaging their opponents.
To study the game’s impact, over two-hundred university students were divided into three groups. One group played Phylo. Another played a similar genetics card game. The third watched a self-paced slideshow. Before and after participating, the students took a survey measuring species knowledge, emotional responses, and donation habits.
Results? Callahan was right! Playing Phylo INCREASED the players’ species knowledge, positive emotions, and understanding of healthy ecosystems. The other groups increased in one or two areas, but Phylo players increased in all!
I guess green living CAN be all fun and games!