Collusion, Communism, and Catan…The Best Gamification of a Gov & Econ Class

Collusion, Communism, and Catan…The Best Gamification of a Gov & Econ Class

I got the chance to go into Mike Franz’s high school gov & econ class when they were playing YOLO, a year-long game where one week of school represents one year of life. The first week of the game the students are 18 years old, the last week of the game they are near retirement age. What will they make of their society, of their economy, of their investments, of their world?

We explore the following:

– what the game looks like from beginning to middle to end
– how Mike utilizes class jobs to stay organized and to have the game virtually run itself
– salient teaching opportunities that come up when using gamification in the classroom
– how teachers can begin to incorporate gamification into their classes
– how to work with competition-averse students in a gamified classroom
– how The World Peace game inspired YOLO
– instances where the game took a turn for the worst
– an invitation for other teachers to try YOLO in their government and economics class

If you’d like to reach out to Mike about YOLO or gamification, he can be reached at:

If you’d like to take a look at the YOLO rule book, email Mike and he’ll send it your way.


Music by:
Big Bird’s Date Night (Full) by Twin Musicom is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (


By Thom H Gibson

I help middle school STEM teachers create meaningful & memorable experiences for their students. Teacher, podcaster, YouTuber. Two-time teacher of the year

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