I often use free choice time as an incentive for my students. After they have finished their work to the best of their abilities, I allow them to choose from a selection of pre-approved educational games and/or typing practice. A few times a year, such as the week before Christmas and the last week of school, I allow them to play games on the internet. Most students are quite satisfied to play Poptropica, Webkinz, or something innocuous like a puzzle game such as Bloxorz, but sometimes they venture off into the world of Game Sites.
By Game Sites i mean those such as Addicting Games, MiniClip, and POG. While there are many fun games here, there are also many problems. I have found Addicting Games especially bad for pop-ups and viruses. And just the other day, I noticed a group of boys huddled around one monitor giggling. I went to investigate and this is what I found them playing:
It’s called Bartender: The Right Mix. You mix various drinks and then feed your creation to the bartender to see if he vomits.
Come on, Game Site Owners. It’s one thing to have silly games like Potty Racer, where kids can trick out and race modified porta-johns, but this is straight up teaching kids how to mix alcoholic beverages!!! We need to draw the line somewhere.
I had a discussion with my students about why this game is inappropriate for them to play, and they get it. I just wish these game designers didn’t make my job quite so difficult.