SciELO - Scientific Electronic Library Online

vol.36 issue2Self-reported bruxism questionnaire. A pilot study in northeastern MexicoPhonologic, morphologic and semantic verbal fluency in Parkinson disease subjects author indexsubject indexarticles search
Home Pagealphabetic serial listing  

Services on Demand




  • Have no cited articlesCited by SciELO

Related links

  • Have no similar articlesSimilars in SciELO



On-line version ISSN 1668-7027


MUNOZ, Carla et al. Teacher motivation for using game as a learning device. Interdisciplinaria [online]. 2019, vol.36, n.2, pp.233-249. ISSN 1668-7027.

Even though play has been widely recognized as a social and cultural practice where children naturally learn, evidence shows that international school practices have tended to reduce spaces for play, relegating it to nearly sporadic levels. Teaching practices in initial education have become increasingly scholastic; despite being recognized as a foundational principle, play has been left to the side of central learning activities, which may affect the development of children. For Chile, a country where standardized assessments have permeated the entire educational system, research has reported a schema of classes centered on adulthood that progressively structure and stiffen classroom activities. Play makes its appearance only as an instructional resource (instructional play), and does so with no measurable certainty of its effectiveness on impacting learning. Given such a gap in the literature regarding how teachers understand play-based education and their motivations toward implementing it at school, this work aimed to explore teacher motivations toward game-based learning in educational contexts under a mixed-methods sequential design. The first stage of the research design surveyed 221 primary education teachers (87.8 % women; average, 29.05 years ± SD 8.74; average teaching experience, 3.67 years ± SD 6.15) with the Motivation Scale for the use of educational games (Muñoz & Valenzuela, 2014) based on the Expectancy Value motivational theory. In the second stage, four focus groups were formed to inquire about the conceptions that these teachers hold regarding play in school settings. Focus group participants were, in total, 29 currently-active primary education teachers (6 men, and 23 women; average age, 41 years ± SD 11.16). Quantitative results show high valuation for different components of motivation, though with significant differences. The most valued dimension corresponded to utility, while the least were expectancy and cost components. No differences were observed by sex or by years of professional experience. These results are consistent with teacher self-reports, who indicate that time, cost, and lack of knowledge in implementing games are inhibiting factors for effective inclusion in the classroom. Moreover, teachers tended not to recognize themselves as players, or engage in play with students; rather, they believe their function is to observe and monitor to maintain order. Within costs, teachers also included loss of control in the classroom as a relevant element: the freedom (or even chaos) that classroom play can lead to is seen as a threat to the teacher. Additionally, teachers have a vague, non-specific –or even idealized– conception of games. They may see play as a series of classroom activities that are decidedly not within educational play; or, even if characterizing games as spontaneous, voluntary, dynamic, and entertaining activities, do not recognize these attributes when placing games in educational contexts. Indeed, games are seen as tools rather than a methodology in itself. Some also idealize play from “the way things used to be”, arguing that children no longer know how to play and blaming new technologies as responsible for this “lack of play” in present childhood. This background highlights the need for explicit evidence-based training of future teachers in the use and incorporation of games as an educational resource.

Keywords : Motivation; Play; Teacher training; Expectancy; Value.

        · abstract in Spanish     · text in Spanish     · Spanish ( pdf )