Posted on March 18th 2019
Year 7 Seek Lost Mine of Phandelver (on Tuesdays)
Our new Dungeons and Dragons Club, started by Mr Carr in January, is proving a big hit with our students. Mr Carr, himself a recent convert to the game, started the club after a friend suggested his students at Harris Garrard Academy might enjoy the game too.
“Dungeons and Dragons is collaborative story-telling,” said Mr Carr. “The children imagine themselves in a different world and together create the characters, a quest, and tell the story collaboratively as the quest unfolds. It’s really good to see the children getting excited, creating fictional characters and deciding what the characters should do.”
The HGA Dungeons and Dragons Club has created a rolling adventure in which they are together going on a quest to find the lost mine of Phandelver, which in the past was mined for magical content but the whereabouts of which is now forgotten.
Dungeons and Dragons has been around for decades but is undergoing a renaissance at present, partly due to it featuring in the Netflix series Stranger Things. “I think part of the appeal is that it’s non-digital and played with each other people face-to-face,” says Mr Carr. “It used to be thought a bit nerdy but now nerdy is cool!”
“There are no screens – just a dice, a character sheet, and barely even a board. Children are given a profile for their character, such as Goblin, Dwarf or Halfling. The children then flesh out a back-story for their character. It’s really interesting seeing the sorts of characters they create. Some want to stir things up and cause trouble in the story! Others want to be heroes and take on the enemy even against overwhelming odds. Other are more interested in the story and how it’s developing.”
The game has a main narrator or Dungeon Master. For our group it’s Zack, Year 7, the only one of the children in the group to have played the game before. “One of the most special moments for me was when Zack was describing a battle scene so vividly that Jennifer, another of the players, asked the group: ‘Can everyone else just picture this in your heads too?’ The whole group agreed they could.”
The pleasure and creativity of story-telling is at the heart of what Dungeons and Dragons is all about. As Seun, Year 7, says: “The best thing about it is being a half dragon who breathes fire.”
Dungeons and Dragons Club takes place in Classroom 241 after school on Tuesdays. Everyone welcome.