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Zon: Game to Learn Mandarin Chinese

Zon is a multiplayer, online learning environment designed to teach Chinese language and culture through gameplay. As a web-based site, Zon provides real-time, on-demand connection to interactive learning activities and authentic cultural information. Zon players are motivated not only by their intrinsic desire to learn more about Chinese language and culture, but also the ability to interact with engaging story-driven plot lines, interesting characters, and fellow players. Zon is built on the premise that learning is interactive. The game provides the opportunity for players to learn from non-player characters (NPCs), responsive game agents, and other players. Throughout each scene, players can engage with various elements of the environment, but they can also speak with other players in that scene or elsewhere in Zon. This allows for players to learn from both the designed game elements and other players. In this way, Zon is designed to provide social and environmental scaffolds to support player learning. Once you log in to the Zon Environment server, your avatar will show up in the Beijing International Airport. You’ll find a large variety of interactive objects to explore in Zon. You can observe authentic conversation and examine the vocabulary and grammar with the language tools, engage in interactive conversations, solve puzzles, play trivia or just play the games at the arcade for fun. There’s plenty to do and see in Zon!

Published by The Office of Chinese Language Council in 2009

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Curriculum Information For Resource

Snapshot
Grade Level(s):All
Curriculum Areas:Foreign Language
Themes/Keywords: Chinese
Game
Mandarin
World Language


Vocabulary
myths, legends, customs, culture


Essential Question(s)
1. What is it like to be a tourist and live in China?

Discussion Question(s)
1. What are some of the famous temples in China?
2. What are different places to visit as a tourist?

Extension and Activities
1. Start out as a tourist and shop in some of the marketplaces.
2. Move up to the Resident level and start a business.


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pictureAngela Gottschall
theatre teacher
Los Angeles Unified School District - Woodland Hills, CA






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