As a narrative game raising the issue of economic problems, particularly poverty, Spent has become popular with college students. Spent’s popularity begins when the teachers ask their students to play the game of Spent. In short, you’re allowed to find a job at Spent and after receiving a pay, you need to use it to buy any stuff and donate it to the poor.
If you have a plan to require your students to play the game of Spent, it’s highly recommended for you to understand deeply how to play this game, how it works, the benefits of playing this game and what people say about this game. To find out the information about this game, let’s see our post below!
What Is Spent and How to Play?
Spend was launched in February 2011 as a collaboration between McKinney and Urban Ministries of Durham. As we’ve mentioned, Spent is a narrative game that allows the students to experience a text-based adventure with a powerful message about social justice. When playing this game, the students will be thrown into a tough life that is often impossible for people’s life on the poverty line.
Of course, you will be able to select a job, obtain a set income and have to make choices based on events which pop up. The goal of this game is to survive a month within budget. When playing this game, the form of tough options will pop up, making the players’ budget and wellness disorderly.
Of course, the disorder of the player’s budget really forces them to drive home the precariousness of poverty. In this case, it will really indicate whether the players prefer to go to a free concert with their friends and pay for the baby sitter or just stay at home and save their money. Moreover, it also identifies which is more important for the players; either food or medication.
How Does the Spent Work?
Playing Spent will give amazing, unforgettable memories for students to come alive with the right scaffolding and extension. On their own, the students will have to get a more relatable picture of what it’s like to be poor in practical, everyday terms.
In this case, teachers will be able to help the students understand why some options that are displayed in the game are so hard and so common. They also need to explain some of the many structural and institutional reasons why the people living in poverty tend to stay living in poverty.
With the help of several resources, Spent can really trigger some fantastic discussions. However, playing Spent will fit in with a number of ELA units dealing with themes of poverty (the Hunger Games series or The Grapes of Wrath to Esperanza Rising), even though the game is not directly correlated to Common Core.
Furthermore, any economics-focused math and social studies units may draw from Spent as a point of illustration and comparison, helping the students understand monthly budgets or government policies which help or hinder poverty.
In social studies class, the students could also research what it would be like to live in poverty in their communities. As a teacher, you can ask your student to find out local rents and the minimum wage. You also suggest they investigate food costs, health costs, etc and also set a monthly budget. Then, the students can also discover possible events and how they would impact the budget that they set up.
Pros and Cons of Spent
There are also pros and cons that Spent delivers. What are they? Let’s see pros and cons of Spent below!
- Pros: Quick, compelling introduction to key social issues.
- Cons: There are no additional resources to aid classroom use.
The point is, playing Spent will need some scaffolding, but for students, they will be ready for the subject matter, that’s a great way as well. If it is done in a serious effort, the game really illustrates to the students the daily realities and struggles of poverty in the United States.
Teacher’s Reviews of Spent
In order to find out what the teachers say about Spent, we finally took a little research. Thankfully, we found a trusted site that provides people’s review of anything: apps, websites, games and many more. So, we got the review of Spent directly from the real teachers.
The teachers’ reviews of Spent are available on Commonsense.org If you access the page, you will find a number of people’s reviews regarding their experience of playing Spent.
We’ll also show you one of the Spent’s reviews which are directly reviewed by a classroom teacher named Lisa from Hershey Middle School Hershey, United States. She gave assessment of this game with 4 star-rating, as follow:
- LEARNING SCORES ENGAGEMENT: 5-stars rating
- PEDAGOGY: 4-stars rating
- SUPPORT: 3-stars rating
Lisa stated that Spent has been used by her and her students when they get to their chapter on spatial inequality that is an extremely hard topic for 6th graders to relate to. Finally, she recommended the game of Spent to her students to play.
By playing this game, her students can see what life decisions would be like for a person who does not have enough money having to live paycheck to paycheck. She really knows that this game went into the specifically about the different costs that are associated with living independently from healthcare to renting an apartment to maintain a vehicle.
Thankfully, her students really view the serious game as a competitive game, but it still fosters empathy. Overall, she revealed that Spent is another great game choice from Games for Change that works both on a mobile device and a computer.
The game of Spent is really attractive with minimalist icon graphics, but the message is strongly delivered. When playing this game, the students should read each prompt carefully. Well, the amount of reading means it doesn’t work well for low literacy or ELL students. The students can also connect this game to social media to Twitter and Facebook if they click on each icon.
On my daily job, I am a software engineer, programmer & computer technician. My passion is assembling PC hardware, studying Operating System and all things related to computers technology. I also love to make short films for YouTube as a producer. More at about me…