Reacting To The Past (RTTP)

The Basic Concept from the Reacting To The Past (RTTP) Website:

“‘Reacting to the Past’ courses employ a different pedagogy.  Students learn by taking on roles, informed by classic texts, in elaborate games set in the past; they learn skills—speaking, writing, critical thinking, problem solving, leadership, and teamwork—in order to prevail in difficult and complicated situations.  That is because Reacting roles, unlike those in a play, do not have a fixed script and outcome. While students will be obliged to adhere to the philosophical and intellectual beliefs of the historical figures they have been assigned to play, they must devise their own means of expressing those ideas persuasively, in papers, speeches or other public presentations; and students must also pursue a course of action they think will help them win the game.”

The RTTP Course Materials:

Every RTTP game consists of the following components:

  • A student game book, which outlines the historical context, game premise, central debates, and rules;
  • An instructor’s manual with role descriptions; and
  • Companion texts / primary source readings (may also be included as appendices to the student game book).

Full List of RTTP Games:

10 complete RTTP games

Dozens more RTTP games in development

Student Perspectives on RTTP:

Instructor Perspectives on RTTP:


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