One of the things I enjoy when teaching the Classroom Technology course for Saint Mary’s is learning from our learners. This past Monday, one of our learners introduced me to SPENT. The Urban Ministries of Durham, NC, designed an interactive role-play experience to challenge the way people think about poverty and homelessness.
For 30 digital days, the “player” is put in the position of a person living in poverty. Select a job and make “real-life decisions” such as where to live, whether to take time off of work to attend the wedding of a friend, or what to purchase when grocery shopping. Each decision has financial implications and statistics are given throughout the game to help educate about the realities of the poor and homeless.
This interactive simulation would be excellent in a class that focuses on life choices, personal economics, sociology, or in any content or programming which focuses on the issues of homelessness and poverty.