Greg Toppo

Books Amelia Atlas, +1 212 556 5600 Email Amelia Atlas

The Game Believes in You

book | Non-Fiction | Mar 2015
World English → Palgrave Macmillan (Ed. Elisabeth Dyssegaard)

How Digital Play Can Make Our Kids Smarter

What if schools, from the wealthiest suburban nursery school to the grittiest urban high school, thrummed with the sounds of deep immersion? More and more people believe that can happen - with the aid of video games.

From Greg Toppo, USA Today's national K-12 education and demographics reporter, The Game Believes in You presents the story of a small group of visionaries who, for the past 40 years, have been pushing to get game controllers into the hands of learners. Among the game revolutionaries you’ll meet in this book:

*A game designer at the University of Southern California leading a team to design a video-game version of Thoreau’s Walden Pond. 

*A young neuroscientist and game designer whose research on “Math Without Words” is revolutionizing how the subject is taught, especially to students with limited English abilities. 

*A Virginia Tech music instructor who is leading a group of high school-aged boys through the creation of an original opera staged totally in the online game Minecraft.

Experts argue that games do truly “believe in you.” They focus, inspire and reassure people in ways that many teachers can’t. Games give people a chance to learn at their own pace, take risks, cultivate deeper understanding, fail and want to try again — right away — and ultimately, succeed in ways that too often elude them in school. This book is sure to excite and inspire educators and parents, as well as provoke some passionate debate.


Claire Nozieres manages the translation rights for The Game Believes in You

Audio Rights


The audio rights are handled by Palgrave Macmillan.

Translation Rights Sold

Chinese Simple
Mainland China
East China Normal University Press

The Games Believe In You shows us how games can help all of us to be better learners, but even more importantly, it is a direct challenge to parents and educators to create learning environments our children deserve.

Rosalind Wiseman
Full Review

What a wonderful and necessary book!

Sandra Tsing Loh
Full Review

A compelling book.

Nolan Bushnell
Full Review

As the parent of a young child, I began “The Game Believes in You” thinking of video games as a kind of menace. I finished it believing that games are one of the most promising opportunities to liberate children from the damaging effects of schools that are hostile to fun.

Kevin Carey
The New York Times Book Review
Full Review

USA Today education reporter believes in power, potential of video gaming

This book is a great resource not only for educators and parents who have doubts about the merits of gaming but also for those who already champion it.

Anne Kniggendorf
The Kansas City Star
Full Review

How video games can transform education

The book is convincing some education traditionalists to take a second look at video games in the classroom [...] the early results are promising.

Jason Russell
Washington Examiner
Full Review

Smart video games can assess kids better than standardized tests, a new book says

If you doubt the title, read this post — and then the book.

Valerie Strauss
The Washington Post
Full Review

Can Gaming Produce Better Students?

Toppo's book details multiple projects that address problems of the modern attention-deficit child [...] and also shows how children, given enough stimulating games-rich environments, will become auto-didactic.

Sophia Stuart
PC Mag
Full Review

How video games can be an educational tool

Convincing [...] Toppo shows that the games clearly hold promise.

T. Rees Shapiro
The Washington Post
Full Review

How Video Games In The Classroom Will Make Students Smarter

[An] excellent book.

Jordan Shapiro

if you’re looking for a first taste of what education might be rather than how it currently is, read this book. Many students here at the UW feel they were failed by the public education system, and if you want to find out why, check this out.

Thomas Crowe
The Daily
Full Review

Q&A: Reporter Delves Into World of 'Digital Play'

A new book offering a wide-ranging take on the ways classroom teachers and game developers are reinventing school through (mostly) digital games.

Benjamin Herold
Education Week Q&A
Full Review

Amelia Atlas
+1 212 556 5600
Email Amelia Atlas
Translation Rights
Claire Nozieres
+44 (0)20 7393 4425
Email Claire Nozieres