Pavlov courtesy of simplypsychology-org

Education: Psychology of Teaching and Learning – Pavlov Game Designers

Game-Design courtesy of handdrawnapps-com

Game-Design courtesy of handdrawnapps-com

Tonight was fun.
Tonight was challenging.
Tonight was a test.

Talk about being stretched to the limits of your creative capacity and realizing, you still have some wiggle room. Miss Ellis gave us an in class assignment that started with an ‘huh?’ and ended with a ‘oh yeah!’

Competition was stiff, brains were churning and the results, surprisingly good.

In tonight’s class we were asked to develop games which would teach students about specific learning theorists and their theories. They were:

  • Classical conditioning – Pavlov
  • Operant conditioning – B.F. Skinner
  • Cognitive learning

This request had students forming three groups of 4 or 5 to start. There weren’t many students in attendance as some either ailed from chikungunya, dropped the course or were purposely late. This has been a concerning trend; but time will tell.

My group passed the brew of inventiveness around, quite a few times. We had 30 minutes and many of the suggestions were logical, but not fully thought through; hence the plea to our lovely lecturer and this won us an additional 30 minutes.

We ultimately created Pavlov’s Challenge.

With the additional time we were able to lay out the general rules of the game for three rounds and soon, we were being called on to discuss and demonstrate what our ingenuity had birthed.

See below:

Game: The PAVLOV Challenge

The PAVLOV Challenge will consist of two (2) teams with six (6) persons on each side.

One (1) team member from each group goes to the dealer and is given a piece of paper, which explains Pavlov’s Classical Conditioning theory.

Each team member is then given 30 seconds simultaneously to read and understand the theory.

They return to their team and have an additional 30 seconds to explain the theory.

Round 1 begins

  • The PAVLOV Challenge Dealer will have 24 cards.
  • He/She draws the cards and states the scenario at the back of each card.
  • Scenarios will indicate an example of an unconditioned stimulus, unconditioned response, conditioned stimulus or conditioned response.
  • The first team to press their buzzer (which lights up) and identifies a scenario correctly will get a point.
  • The first team to get six (6) scenarios correct wins the round.

Round 2

  • The winning team of Round one (1) will now be split into two (2) teams.
  • The teams will be given four (4) scenarios and they will have to explain how they will transform the scenario from an unconditioned to conditioned response.
  • The first team to transform three (3) scenarios wins the round.

Round 3 (speed round)

  • Three (3) individuals remain from the team rounds.
  • Each player will be given a new deck of 24 cards.
  • In 30 seconds they need to pair all the cards.
  • Then in the two containers provided, per player identify them correctly as unconditioned stimulus and unconditioned response or conditioned stimulus and conditioned response.
  • The player who does this first and correctly wins The PAVLOV Challenge game


Now, I am pooped. Brain tired. Body shutting down. Face, smiling. Mind, please don’t get it restarted else it never ends.

Off to bed.


Copyright © 2014 · All Rights Reserved · Denise N. Fyffe

She has published several books of poetry including Jamaican Honey and Sauce’, Jamaican Pebbles, Love under the Caribbean Stars and Jamaican Pebbles: Poetry Pocketbook.


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