General Information

Professor Information

Instructor Profile Picture


Maikel Alendy


Course Slack


(305) 348-0274

Office Hours

By appointment

Course Description and Purpose

Play presents itself throughout modern life. Successfully as developmental staples of developing relationships to developing multi-billion dollar industries and negatively as a connection to abnormal psychological disorders and a severe hindrance to productive creativity. Play significantly effects health outcomes, problem-solving skills, adaptability, overall "joy", and addiction; however, it rarely gets the attention it demands. Humans are inately designed/wired/built to play and to continue to play throughout their lives. This interdisciplinary Honors course is dedicated to answering three foundational questions: What is Play?, Why MUST we Play?, and How do we Play?. We find the answers to these questions by analyzing Play through anthropological, neurobiological,  societal, developmental, and business lenses. 

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course students will be able to:

  1. Define what play is
  2. Compare and Contrast healthy/effective play and destructive play
  3. Describe how play shapes the brain, cultivates creativity, and socializes individuals
  4. Analyze the value of play in business, amongst families, and throughout development 
  5. Create an activity that effectively engages children in healthy play 
  6. Apply techniques of play in developing cognitive strategies to complete creative, professional, and social tasks
  7. Utilize various psychological perspectives of play to examine how play relates to their own lives
  8. Construct a presentation that is both effective and engaging in alignment with established presentation standards

Global Learning Course Outcomes

Global Awareness: Students will be able to demonstrate knowledge of the inter-relatedness of local, global, international, and intercultural issues, trends, and systems.

  • Identify culturally specific forms of various technologies and media and their origins.
  • Compare and contrast the evolution of similar styles of media and technological interaction in varied nations.
  • Value differences to disruptive technology/media contribution to relationship, communication and thought development .
  • Analyze global impacts of disruptive media and technology; particularly its affects on employment patterns, global elections, social perceptions/misconceptions.

Global Perspective: Students will be able to develop a multi-perspective analysis of local, global, international, and intercultural problems.

  • Discuss the cultural/age-related/social implications that shaped the business of uberization.
  • Analyze and describe how the global distributions of technology and information affected perceptions and the efficacy of ideas, products, and movements.

Global Engagement—Students will be able to demonstrate a willingness to engage in local, global, international, and intercultural problem solving..

  • Students will engage in an in-class debate of physical/social/educational issues facing families, schools, and general perceptions of disruptive technology and media.
  • Students will reflect on the relationship between their own exploration of social media and uberization and consequent impacts. 
  • Analyze the psychosocial and economical impacts of play on local, national, global populations and themselves personally.

Global Learning Graduation Honors

FIU’s Excellence in Global Learning Graduation Medallion is awarded to students who complete at least four global learning courses, participate in a variety of global co-curricular activities, and complete a capstone consisting of one of the following: a substantial original research project and presentation on a global topic; extensive foreign language study; long-term study abroad; or, a globally-focused internship. The Peace Corps Prep certification is conferred upon students who complete at least four global learning courses, extensive language study, and a global problem-solving project. For more information, visit

Course Awards

Affordability Counts

This course has been awarded the Affordability Counts Medallion. The Affordability Counts initiative at FIU seeks to make learning more affordable by reducing the cost of course materials to $60 or less. Find out more by visiting the Affordability Counts website at

Important Information

Honors Policies

Registration in this course implies acceptance of and compliance with the Honors College policies for students and the FIU Code of Academic Integrity.

Honors Engagement Requirements
Beginning in Fall 2014, Honors College students are required to accumulate at least 20 engagement points each academic year (Fall and Spring) by attending Honors College activities. Students attending only one semester (Fall or Spring) are required to accumulate 10 engagement points.

Honors College Community Service Requirements
Honors College students must also complete 20 volunteer service hours. These hours DO NOT count toward the 20 engagement points discussed above.

Student Portfolios
The Honors College will be using a portfolio method to assess students’ learning outcomes. The portfolio allows for maximum flexibility in gauging student learning. Students decide (with instructor consultation) what “artifacts” or assignments to include for consideration in their portfolios to demonstrate successful achievement of each of five key student learning outcomes over the 4-year Honors experience.

HonorsEducation in the ARTS (HEARTS)
The HEARTS program is designed to give Honors College students opportunities to “explore and appreciate different artistic and cultural traditions and modes of artistic expression. HEARTS will also serve as a clearinghouse (and curatorial framework) for our students to experience the arts on campus and in the community by providing them with information about cultural activities and access to performances with free or discounted tickets.

Honors College Academic Misconduct Statement
In The Honors College, the term “honor” refers both to academic accomplishment and character. Students in Honors should therefore adhere to and be held to the highest standards of personal academic accountability. Academic dishonesty in any form, including plagiarism, is antithetical to the very definition of being an Honors student at FIU. Consequently, an Honors College student found responsible for academic misconduct will be dismissed from the College.

Procedures and Penalties
An Honors faculty member may bring charges of academic misconduct against an Honors student if the faculty member suspects plagiarism or other forms of academic misconduct.  The faculty member will decide whether to pursue informal resolution, file formal resolution charges, or take no further action, and will follow the procedures outlined in the Honors College website, and the Academic Misconduct Procedures.

Please refer to the following documents for additional information:

Religious Observances
Every effort will be made, where feasible and practical, to accommodate students whose religious practices coincide with class requirements or scheduling. Please make sure to notify your instructor at the beginning of the semester of which dates you will be absent or any anticipated problems with completing course work.


Please review the FIU's Policies and Netiquette webpage. The policies webpage contains essential information regarding guidelines relevant to all courses at FIU, as well as additional information about acceptable netiquette for online courses.

As a member of the FIU community you are expected to be knowledgeable about the behavioral expectations set forth in the FIU Student Code of Conduct.

FIU Emergency Management Procedures

The FIU Department of Emergency Management guides the university's all hazard preparedness, response, recovery and mitigation needs, by coordinating information and resources to protect our students, faculty, staff and visitors, and restoring operations as soon as possible following a disaster.

Some of the valuable safety resources you'll find on our website are:

  • Information on FIU Criminal Threats to guide faculty, staff, and students who may be caught in an active shooting, bomb threat, or suspicious packages situation.
    • The FIU Police Department recommends downloading the app called “Stop the Bleed”, which provides instructions on how to efficiently stop excessive bleeding when someone has been shot or has an open wound.
  • The FIU Safety Equipment Map to identify all exits in your classrooms as well as all FIU safety equipment on-campus.
    • Make note of the nearest Automated External Defibrillators (AED), Evacuation Chairs and Emergency Call boxes to your classroom. 
  • Information on the FIU Emergency Alert System and sign up for FIU Alerts.
  • Information on how to prepare and deal with different types of emergencies.

Panthers Care & Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS)

If you are looking for help for yourself or a fellow classmate, Panthers Care encourages you to express any concerns you may come across as it relates to any personal behavior concerns or worries you have, for the classmate’s well-being or yours; you are encouraged to share your concerns with FIU’s Panthers Care website.

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) offers free and confidential help for anxiety, depression, stress, and other concerns that life brings. Professional counselors are available for same-day appointments. Don’t wait to call 305-348-2277 to set up a time to talk or visit the online self-help portal.

Technical Requirements & Skills

By taking a hybrid course your computer literacy skills will grow. Some of the skills that you need at the beginning of the course include:

  • Working knowledge of how to use word processing software and web browsers.
  • Good email and document management skills.
  • Navigating online gaming applications
  • Operating a webcam device and uploading a video onto your computer

Technical course requirements include:

  • A reliable Internet connection.
  • Regular access to a laptop or desktop computer with an updated operating system and web browser.
  • An active FIU email account that is checked daily (or forwarded to an email that is checked daily).
  • Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etx)
  • Anti-virus software.
  • A Netflix account 
  • A smartphone or tablet

One of the greatest barriers to taking an hybrid  course is a lack of basic computer literacy. By computer literacy we mean being able to manage and organize computer files efficiently, and learning to use your computer's operating system and software quickly and easily. Keep in mind that this is not a computer literacy course; but students enrolled in online courses are expected to have moderate proficiency using a computer. Please go to the "What's Required" webpage to find out more information on this subject.

This course utilizes the following tools. Select the corresponding links below in order to access each tool's Privacy Policy:

Please visit our System and Technical Requirements webpage for additional information.

Accessibility and Accomodation

The Disability Resource Center collaborates with students, faculty, staff, and community members to create diverse learning environments that are usable, equitable, inclusive and sustainable. The DRC provides FIU students with disabilities the necessary support to successfully complete their education and participate in activities available to all students. If you have a diagnosed disability and plan to utilize academic accommodations, please contact the Center at 305-348-3532 or visit them at the Graham Center GC 190.

For additional assistance please contact FIU's Disability Resource Center.

Web Accessibility Statements for Partners and Vendors

Please visit our ADA Compliance webpage for additional information about accessibility involving the tools used in this course.

Academic Misconduct Statement

Florida International University is a community dedicated to generating and imparting knowledge through excellent teaching and research, the rigorous and respectful exchange of ideas and community service. All students should respect the right of others to have an equitable opportunity to learn and honestly to demonstrate the quality of their learning. Therefore, all students are expected to adhere to a standard of academic conduct, which demonstrates respect for themselves, their fellow students, and the educational mission of the University. All students are deemed by the University to understand that if they are found responsible for academic misconduct, they will be subject to the Academic Misconduct procedures and sanctions, as outlined in the Student Handbook.

Academic Misconduct includes: 

Cheating – The unauthorized use of books, notes, aids, electronic sources; or assistance from another person with respect to examinations, course assignments, field service reports, class recitations; or the unauthorized possession of examination papers or course materials, whether originally authorized or not. 

Plagiarism – The use and appropriation of another’s work without any indication of the source and the representation of such work as the student’s own. Any student who fails to give credit for ideas, expressions or materials taken from another source, including internet sources, is responsible for plagiarism.

Learn more about the academic integrity policies and procedures as well as student resources that can help you prepare for a successful semester.

Course Prerequisites

Students must be enrolled in the Honors College and have advisor approval to take upper-level courses.

Required Course Materials

Webcam or webcam enabled computer
title : 

Webcam or webcam enabled computer

A webcam enabled laptop, cellphone, or tablet will suffice.

Smartphone/Tablet with iOS or Android OS
title : 

Smartphone/Tablet with iOS or Android OS

Your smartphone or tablet needs to have access to Apple's app store or Google Play's app store.

Netflix subscription
title : 

Netflix subscription

You may purchase your account online at the Netflix website. We will be using various movies, shows, and documentaries to discuss and examine content covered in the course.

Expectations of This Course

This is a hybrid course, which means most (if not all) of the course work will be conducted online synchronously. Expectations for performance in remote hybrid courses are the same for a traditional course. In fact, online courses require a degree of self-motivation, self-discipline, and technology skills which can make these courses more demanding for some students.

Students are expected to:

  • Review the how to get started information located in the course content
  • Introduce yourself to the class during the first week by posting a self introduction in the appropriate discussion forum
  • Take the practice quiz to ensure that your computer is compatible with Canvas
  • Interact online with instructor/s and peers
  • Review and follow the course calendar
  • Log-in to the course 4 times per week
  • Respond to discussions, blogs and journal postings within 4 days
  • Respond to messages within 1 day
  • Submit assignments by the corresponding deadline
  • Participate in class activities

The instructor will:

  • Log-in to the course 7 times per week
  • Respond to discussion boards, blogs, and journal postings within 7 days
  • Respond to Direct Messages within 72 hours
  • Grade assignments within 14 days of the assignment deadline

Course Detail

Course Communication

Communication in this course will take place via Slack.

Slack is a communication tool that can downloaded on your phone or your computer. We will be using Slack to deliver announcements, share course updates, and communicate/meet with the professor one-on-one.  You can choose to to use either your phone application, the desktop application, web application or all three.

You will be directed to a registration link in the course content area, be sure to select it and check our course Slack channel on your smartphone or computer desktop app frequently. 

What is Slack

Slack is a channel-based messaging platform. With Slack, people can work together more effectively, connect all their software tools and services, and find the information they need to do their best work — all within a secure, enterprise-grade environment.

Your Slack workspace

A Slack workspace is made up of channels, where team members can communicate and work together. Keep reading to learn about four key features of Slack.

💬 Organized conversations

In Slack, team members send messages and share files in channels. Create channels for teams, projects, office locations, or anything else that’s relevant to your organization. You can make channels private for conversations that shouldn’t be open to all members, or you can use shared channels to collaborate with external organizations from your own workspaces.

🔎 Searchable history

When messages and files are shared in public channels, information flows transparently throughout Slack. You can search your team's conversation history in Slack to find relevant messages, files, channels, and people. With Slack’s searchable history, conversations can become common institutional knowledge.

🤖 Connected apps

Add apps to your workspace to connect services or tools you're already using to Slack. With the right apps installed, you can do your work without ever leaving your Slack workspace. Find thousands of apps to help you stay productive, organized, and efficient in the Slack App Directory.

📞 Slack calls

You can start a voice or video call with any other members of your workspace right from Slack. Share your screen to show your teammates exactly what you see on your computer — you can even draw on your screen while you’re screen sharing.

Visit our Writing Resources webpage for more information on professional writing and technical communication skills.

Asynchronous Course Discussions

Keep in mind that your discussion forum postings will likely be seen by other members of the course. Care should be taken when determining what to post.

This semester our class will utilize the discussion tool in order to complete the following discussion assignments. This includes the:

  • Meme Image Blog
  • Attend a Meeting

This tool allows students to participate in open forum discussions and engage in a similar fashion to Facebook with classmates and the professor.  

All discussions must be completed by the following Monday @ 11:55pm for students to receive full credit.

Keep in mind; responses such as ‘I agree’ or ‘yea…what he said’ will result in zero points of credit. You can earn your grade and exemplary participation will earn higher scores. Read the rubric within each assignment for more information. Each discussion may require variable responses (2-4).

Keep in mind that your discussion forum postings will likely be seen by other members of the course. Care should be taken when determining what to post.

Scores will be provided within a 2 weeks of the assignment due date

PlayPosit Interactive Assessments

PlayPosit is an online learning environment to create and share interactive video lessons. Students will use this tool to take a video assessment on various topics in this course. Students will have unlimited time and attempts to complete the interactive video assessment. Students will be presented True/False, and multiple choice questions. Students are not required to create an individual profile in order to take this assessment. Some of these assessments will be for a grade and others will be requirements to unlock instructional content.

If you have any additional questions feel free to review PlayPosit's Knowledge Base webpage.

Assessments will be graded immediately with student submission and answers hidden until after the assessment due date

Course Video Discussions

This course has assignments requiring students to upload a video of themselves in a Canvas discussion. Within module 1 you will find information on how to upload a video to a Canvas discussion. Videos will be uploaded into each video discussion using the native Canvas video feature. Be sure to give your video a unique title so that you will easily find it.

One video assignment will be uploaded into Slack instead of Canvas discussions. Please review the name of that assignment below. This video will require you to upload a recording of your group during a Zoom session. These video files can be large, please upload your video into YouTube as unlisted if you run into this issue and then post that link into Slack. Only one group member needs to post the group video.

This semester our class will utilize the discussion tool in order to complete all video discussion assignments. This includes the:

  • Introduce Yourself Video Blog
  • Teamwork Makes the Dream Work (Slack)
  • Kids Thoughts
  • This Is Your TED Talk

All discussions that require that students submit their video for peer review and all peer-reviews must be completed by the following Monday @ 11:55pm for students to receive full credit.

Scores will be provided within 2 weeks of the assignment due date.

Learn Through Play

This semester you will actively participate in "Learn Through Play" during class time. Each of these activities might require you to play virtual beer pong (without alcoholic beverages), play Pokemon Go, participate in a Jackbox game session, a Kahoot session, or other various gaming platforms. 

Some of these activities might be individual games, but many will be group games. Sometimes students will be competing against the professor, among your class members, or with other groups in the course. 

Students are encouraged to attend each activity on time since you will only be allowed to miss one of these activities this semester.

Additionally, you and your group will be eligible to win an additional attempt on your module assessment or presentation date/time preference on assignments. These activities are worth nearly 2 letter grades ~20%.

Scores will be provided within 2 weeks of the assignment due date.

Attend a Meeting

During this semester we will examine the "Dark side" of play, addiction. In order to best understand and review this concept you will be required to attend a gamblers/narcotic/alcohol anonymous meeting. Your professor will coordinate potential meeting times and share them with you all to be completed during the assigned week. Students are not required to physically attend meetings and are not required to speak during meetings. You will share a reflection on your experience for full credit, you may be required to demonstrate evidence of attendance.

Scores will be provided within 2 weeks of the assignment due date.

Look At Me Now Presentation

This semester you will be required to learn a completely new skill and spend 5 minutes sharing and presenting the new skill with your class members. 

Acceptable skills can be:

  • Cooking a new dish
  • Baking bread
  • Learning and teaching us a phrase in American Sign Language
  • Playing a song on a musical instrument

Your grade will not be based on how well you master the new skill, but how challenging a skill you selected, your effort to master it, and your presentation sharing this with your class members. 

Scores will be provided within 2 weeks of the assignment due date.

LinkedIn Creativity Skills

Fundamentally, "Play" plays a huge role in our capacity and ability to be creative. The processes associate with each term are synonymous. This semester students will be required to complete a LinkedIn learning path on honing their own creativity. The learning path will be linked in the content area and you will be directed on how to complete the courses within LinkedIn. You have access to LinkedIn learning with your student username and password at no additional cost (you already paid for it in your tuition). You will be presented with certificates once you complete this course and will be required to post this in your LinkedIn profile. Most instructions on this assignment will be available in the content area.

Students must share a screen shot of their certificates and their LinkedIn post in order to receive full credit for this activity.

Scores will be provided within 2 weeks of the assignment due date.

Clash of Clans Class Activity

This semester you will be required to join the class "Clash of Clans" clan. Student will be required to participate in 10 Clan Wars for full credit. After week 3 a Clash of Clans clan will be created so you can join. For each Clan War you must attack and request and provide troops to classmates. Whether you win most attacks will not factor into your grade. You will be asked to provide your clan name on a course google sheet for credit. You should download the Clash of Clans application as soon as possible to upgrade you villages to participate in Clan wars.

Students should access the Class #ClashofClans channel for appropriate updates.

In order to use Clash of Clans, you will need a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet.  Clash of Clans cannot be accessed on a desktop. Students are expected to post responsibly, adhere to copyright laws, and post images that are deemed respectful in accordance with University guidelines.

Private Reflection Journal

A Journal reflection will be due 4 times throughout the semester, which will only be seen by you and the professor. These reflections will only be graded for completion, not for content. This will provide an opportunity for students to interact privately with the professor in regards to the course content. Feel free to share your personal views on the content and how it affects your life. Journals should be a substantive paragraph and must be turned in on time to receive full credit. 

Scores will be provided within 2 weeks of the assignment due date.


Students must take and pass the Syllabus Exam with 100% in order to gain access to course content.

In order to mitigate any issues with your computer and online assessments, it is very important that you take the "Practice Quiz" from each computer you will be using to take your graded quizzes and exams. It is your responsibility to make sure your computer meets the minimum hardware requirements.

All assessments will auto-submit when (1) the timer runs out OR (2) the closing date/time is reached, whichever happens first. For example, if a quiz has a closing time of 5:00 pm but the student begins the exam at 4:55 pm, the student will only have 5 minutes to complete the quiz.

Assessments in this course are not compatible with mobile devices and should not be taken through a mobile phone or a tablet. If you need further assistance please contact FIU Online Support Services.

  • There will be 5 Module Assessments this semester
  • Assessments will be made available on the Monday of the week they are assigned at 12:01am and will close on the following week on Monday at 11:55pm. Except for the final week since Summer courses end on Friday.
  • Each Assessment will consist of 15 (multiple choice, true/false, matching, multiple answer, or short response) questions. Students will have 20 minutes to complete each assessment.
  • Students will be able to review module assessment results one after the due date has passed.
    • Results will include: students responses and question feedback.

Assessments will be graded immediately with student submission.

Zoom Video Conference

Zoom is an online meeting room where you can interact with your professor and fellow students by sharing screens, sharing files, chatting, broadcasting live audio, and taking part in other interactive online activities. We will be utilizing this tool to conduct online office hours.

Reference Zoom Help Center (Tutorials & Help) to learn about the tool, how to access your meeting rooms and recordings.

Zoom Test Meeting Room 
Use this link to access the Zoom Test Meeting Room. This meeting room is available to test out the software before joining an actual session.

Reference the provided links to access Zoom student tutorials to learn about the tool, how to access your meeting room, and share your screen.

Late Policy

Assignments can be submitted up to 3 days after its due date for a minimum 20% grade reduction.  Assessments cannot be taken after the due date unless the exception was previously granted by the professor.


Course Requirements
Number of ItemsPoints for EachTotal Points AvailableWeight
Attend a Meeting160606%
Clash of Clans Class Activity106606%
LinkedIn Creativity as a Skill Assignment
Look at Me Now Presentation160606%
Private Journal
Learn Through Play Activities121518018%
Module Assessments
Course Assignments55025025%
Extra Credit Game Night


LetterRange (%)LetterRange (%)
LetterRange (%)
A95 or aboveB83 - 86C70 - 76
A-90 - 94B-80 - 82D60- 69
B+87-89C+77 - 79F59 or less


Complete All Items
Week 1
Items to Read/View/Listen
100 pts |Score at least 100
Items to Read/View/Listen
Items to Read/View/Listen