- Wizards of the Coast and YMI continue their collaboration of Dungeons & Dragons-themed program of fun activities in the classroom.
- The D&D materials are designed to encourage STEM learning, letting young learners use their imagination and creative expression.
- Titled Dungeons & Dragons: A Field Guide to Dragons, the program is intended as a tie-in to the recent TTRPG supplement The Practically Complete Guide to Dragons.
A new set of fun activities for the Dungeons & Dragons classroom learning program has been released for Grades 4-6 and 6-8. These teaching aids are specifically themed in line with the new D&D Fifth Edition supplement, The Practically Complete Guide to Dragons TTRPG.
After the big screen film Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves, awareness of the tabletop roleplaying game in the mainstream is at an all-time high. Despite the D&D movie having a middling box office performance, more and more people are getting interested in trying the TTRPG that inspired it. And that includes educators who are looking to spruce up their teaching programs by adding a little fantasy adventure to the mix.
The new content for the Dungeons & Dragons STEM learning program was posted at the YMI official website.
Explore the mysterious and mythological world of dragons with student activities inspired by Dungeons & Dragons. pic.twitter.com/eZvA9gAHrx
— Dungeons & Dragons (@Wizards_DnD) September 11, 2023
The Dungeons & Dragons: A Field Guide to Dragons program is a collaboration between Wizards of the Coast and Young Minds Inspired (YMI). There are two slightly different versions aimed to two demographics of learners Grades 4 to 6 and Grades 6 to 8. Specifically, the activities included are intended to promote STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) learning, as well as encouraging students to use their imagination and creative expression.
According to the official description at the YMI website:
Engage your students in a quest to explore the mysterious and mythological world of dragons with activities inspired by the Dungeons & Dragons roleplaying game and its characters. Students use analytical, science, and language arts skills as they solve puzzles and describe their dragon encounters.
All the materials educators need to adopt the Dungeons & Dragons: A Field Guide to Dragons can be found and downloaded through YMI. The PDFs include the teacher's guide, student activity sheets (which can be reproduced), an educational standards alignment chart, and an online feedback form. Plus, there is a video that is intended to complement the learning materials.
While the subject matter is centered on the variety of fictional draconic species in D&D, the activities themselves challenge learners to practice active listening and creative expression. For instance, there are Q&A parts that ask students what the differences are between each dragon's habitats, choice of food, treasures they usually amass, and their magical capabilities.
For the older "kids" who want to bring more dragon facts into their game, there is the TTRPG supplement The Practically Complete Guide to Dragons. Released last August 2023, this tome goes into detail as to the minutiae of dragons. These details include such things as how big a "colossal" dragon of a species actually is or what you can find in the lair of a Copper Dragon.
Given the windfall of positive attention that D&D is getting from the success of Baldur's Gate 3 by Larian Studios, the learning programs Wizards of the Coast is giving away for free to qualified institutions is a smart choice. Could we see something similar from R. Talsorian and its Cyberpunk 2077 TTRPG or Paizo's Pathfinder?
About Young Minds Inspired:
YMI distributes its programs free of charge to members of the YMI Educator Network, which includes more than 2 million teachers at every public, private, and parochial school in the United States as well as schools in Canada. Every YMI program is developed by curriculum experts and reviewed by members of our Educator Advisory Board, a blue-ribbon panel of active teachers who assure that our programs align with academic standards and meet practical classroom needs.
Dungeons & Dragons: A Field Guide to Dragons and other D&D educator resources are available for free right now. Meanwhile, The Practically Complete Guide to Dragons hardcover is available for $39.95 through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or at local gaming shops near you (check for availability).