Full squad. Take shelter. Zombies. Kills. Wins. This is the language of Fortnite, and this is the game that has taken over my middle school classroom. Literally. I have come accustomed to some of the vocabulary my boys talk about constantly, and I watch my girls roll their eyes at them.
It was only about two or three weeks ago I starting hearing about this game called, Fortnite. Just like anything, it started by trickling in, and then within in a week, it became a full-fledge obsession not just in my classroom but throughout our entire school. Whether it was a break in our lesson or a second to open their notebook, Fortnite has become the topic of conversation within my classroom. I know it is not only my classroom, but this game has infiltrated many classrooms and schools nationwide. I was about to pound my head against the wall if I heard “Fortnite” again, and I knew I had to think of a solution to survive yet another craze…and that’s when the light bulb went off!
What is Fortnite?
Fortnite is a game where players are dropped into a world, and they have to find shelters and survive the zombies. This Hunger Game like game, is just that. A player wants to be the last one standing, and this is considered a win. This game has become so popular because it is FREE, and it has graphics just like some of the top Xbox games. It is apparently also a lot of fun and engaging, and the “killing” aspect is more comical than realistic. Some argue this is a more appropriate game to play in comparison to Call of Duty and Battlefields. However, any teacher can tell you it has become an OBSESSION, which brings on its own concerns. Kids are staying up all night to play the game, and they are addicted to getting to the next level. The combination of these items helped me come up with a great idea!
How I Beat My Students at Their Own Game!
As teachers, we can decorate our classrooms in colorful banners, streamers and tulle, play creative review games, design inventive activities, but there is one word that engages students more than anything in the classroom-RELEVANCE. Students love when current fads, current event issues and other popular, relevant items are brought into their education lives. This is where I knew I had to design an activity to incorporate Fortnite into my English classroom.
One of my state requirements is for students to have a greater understanding of argument writing when they leave me in June. I thought to myself, Fortnite would be the perfect platform to present the argument about video games, addiction and violence.
I did my research, found credible sources, and began writing an article on Fortnite and whether it is an addiction or amusement. I knew this would be a hit with my students. In addition to writing the article, I created multiple choice questions for reading comprehension, as well as an argument short answer question. BAM! HIGH FIVE! I also figured other teachers could relate to this phenomenon in their classroom and use it in their own classrooms; therefore, I posted it in my Teachers Pay Teachers store, and I didn’t realize how popular the article would become! Cleary, I am not the only teacher dealing with this craze! Here is what the product looks like:
Here are some pictures from some of my buyers using this article in their classroom!
After I wrote the Fortnite article, I wrote a Snapchat article for the girls since Fortnite is geared more toward the boys! I was so inspired by the subjects, I created a Fortnite Reading Comprehension Escape Room! I figured this is great for test prep review, since so many are going into their testing seasons. If you are interested in these products, just click on the pictures!
Here’s a tip from a seasoned teacher who is still learning daily-Bring relevant information and ideas into the classroom. Your students will appreciate it. Believe me.