Writing about school meals in Afghanistan I was reminded of the World Food Program’s very cool educational video game aimed at helping kids understand food security and hunger. It’s called Food Force and it’s free to download on the site.
The concept is that there is a hunger crisis on the fictional island of Sheylan—environmental problems caused by climate change and civil war are among the causes—and you are part of a response team that must complete 6 “missions”— moving from assessment of the crisis and food drops to distribution and onto long term development and rebuilding strategies.
The missions offer kids an opportunity to learn what hunger is, who is hungry and why. But it also goes that important step further and looks at what can be done to end hunger— moving past emergency aid into school feeding and food for training programs (among other things).
There are also helpful followup resources for teachers who will want to make links to their curriculum and current events.
It’s definitely an educational game (no teachable moment goes unexplained) but the graphics are good and the story is pretty compelling. Plus, it moves along quite quickly. You can complete all 6 missions in about 30 or 40 minutes.