ITCILO teaches about AI through play

ITCILO teaches about AI through play

Our new gameboard improves AI literacy for learning and training professionals through meaningful conversations

ITCILO teaches about AI through play
Why we need to see beyond the AI binary

The conversations around AI these days seem to be polarized. On one side, you have the advocates hyping up how AI will solve all our problems. On the other hand, the critics are warning about robots taking over the world. The truth is, AI is complex with many nuances, and we need to move beyond this binary way of thinking to find a deeper, more realistic understanding.

The ITCILO AI gameboard aims to increase AI literacy through meaningful discussions. Rather than framing AI as purely positive or negative, it helps people explore the opportunities and challenges, myths and facts. Some common myths include that AI will make all jobs obsolete or that we’ll have human-level AI any day now. The reality is AI may transform jobs, but also create new ones. And we’re still quite far from human-level AI.

Through conversations, people can clarify misunderstandings, consider different perspectives, and find common ground. The ITCILO AI gameboard uses examples and scenarios related to learning and training to prompt discussions on topics like:

  • How AI may enhance learning and training opportunities
  • How we can make sure AI is inclusive, transparent, and aligned with human values
  • How we can use AI to increase productivity; one study shows that a 30% productivity boost is possible

The future of AI depends on us. With open-minded, well-informed discussions, we can help ensure it’s developed and applied responsibly to benefit all learners and workers.

ITCILO teaches about AI through play
Getting started with the ITCILO AI gameboard

The ITCILO AI gameboard makes learning about AI fun and accessible. The key objective is to increase AI literacy for professionals in a collaborative way.

Rather than passively consuming information, the ITCILO AI gameboard puts you in the driver's seat to explore AI through open-ended conversations with your peers. Guided by a set of thought-provoking questions, you can gain valuable insights from the collective knowledge and diverse perspectives in the group.

How it works

To use the ITCILO AI gameboard, you need a phone with internet connection and, ideally, six players. Players sit around the table with the gameboard set up in front of them. Each player randomly selects a card that displays a shape, which is possible to recreate using the cards on the gameboard. Your goal is to recreate your shape on the gameboard by flipping over cards and completing the tasks described. Players take turns flipping the cards and scanning the QR codes on the backs of them. The game is over when a player successfully recreates their shape.

Here are some examples of the questions you may find on the cards:

  • How might we use AI to improve working conditions in an educational/training context?
  • Use ChatGPT and Pictory to generate a 1-minute video about…
  • Finish this sentence about AI… 
Why it works

There are no fixed answers. The goal is to collectively discuss what AI could signify for us as colleagues and as an organization. Done thoughtfully, we gain insights on how to harness AI to improve learning and training and to advance the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

The questions are intended as conversation starters. From there, we explore related topics and share diverse viewpoints. For example, players may consider how AI may influence areas like:

  • Content creation and delivery
  • Assessment and evaluation
  • Administration and management
  • …and more!

As a former participant shared: 

"The AI gameboard opened my mind to the possibilities of AI for learning and work. I gained a broader perspective through sharing ideas with my colleagues. Our conversations were thought-provoking and helped me understand this emerging field."

Behind the game

The ITCILO partnered with Nik Baerten, knowledge engineer and co-founder of Pantopicon, a foresight and design studio based in Belgium. Pantopicon blends insights from various disciplines to create provocative futures and help organizations explore long-term challenges and opportunities. Nik is a frequent speaker and guest lecturer on all things future, and has received recognition for his work in design and foresight.


We wanted people not only to reason about AI, but also to experience its power and limitations. This is why we included assignments for people to carry out utilising AI tools.

Nik Baerten
Knowledge engineer and co-founder of Pantopicon
ITCILO teaches about AI through play
Takeaways for AI literacy
Start with the basics
To have meaningful conversations about AI, you first need to understand what it actually is. The ITCILO AI gameboard focuses on demystifying AI through practical exercises. Once you grasp the fundamentals, you’ll be able to explore the more complex issues.
Consider the human impact
AI doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Its development and use have significant implications for jobs, privacy, bias and more. The ITCILO AI gameboard prompts discussions on how AI may impact individuals, organizations and society as a whole.
Translate insights into action
Merely increasing knowledge about AI isn’t enough. We need to apply that knowledge to influence how AI is built and deployed. The ITCILO AI gameboard is designed to spark interest in staying up-to-date with AI progress and participating in ongoing discussions.

The key is keeping the conversation going even after the game ends. AI literacy is a journey, not a destination. But with the right tools and an open and curious mindset, it’s a journey we can all take together.

Further reading

The ITCILO provides additional resources for building and maintaining AI literacy, such as online courses and tailor-made AI Labs. We recommend:

  • Artificial intelligence for development: Explores how AI can support capacity development projects, aiming to ensure equal access to digital transformation and introduces participants to AI concepts such as neural networks and machine learning
  • Artificial intelligence innovation sprint: Focuses on leveraging AI for social good, using design thinking sprints to develop a minimum viable product with AI, machine learning, or automated decision-making elements

To build your AI literacy and start meaningful conversations, here are some other resources to explore:

  • “The power of inclusive artificial intelligence for training” (ITCILO): Longform story that discusses the efforts of global actors to soften disruption and address bias in AI, highlighting the importance of ensuring the benefits and risks of AI are distributed fairly
  • Elements of AI (University of Helsinki and MinnaLearn): Series of free online courses to teach what AI is, what can (and can’t) be done with AI, and how to start creating AI methods
  • Generative AI learning path (Google): Curated collection of content on generative AI products and technologies, from the fundamentals of Large Language Models to how to create and deploy generative AI solutions on Google Cloud
Podcasts and videos

There are many podcasts and video channels dedicated to explaining AI concepts and topics in an easy to understand way. Some recommendations:

Online communities

Engaging in discussions with others is a great way to learn. Check out some of these online communities:

  • AI Reddit: Subreddits like r/artificial, r/machinelearning and r/learnmachinelearning have active discussions and people willing to answer questions.
  • AI Stack Exchange: Community-driven Q&A platform for AI-related questions with a large community of experts and enthusiasts who answer questions and share their knowledge
  • AI Meetup: Global community of AI enthusiasts that organizes meetups in different cities to bring people together to share knowledge and network

There are many pathways to building your AI literacy. Find what works for your learning style and interests, then start engaging in meaningful conversations. The more you discuss AI, the more adept and comfortable you'll become with the technology.

Contact us to learn more about our tailor-made AI Labs.