#ForYou: The Algorithm Game Lesson Plan

Level: Grades 9 to 12

About the Author: Matthew Johnson, Director of Education,  MediaSmarts

Duration: 75 minutes (game only); 2 ½ hours (including assessment activity)

This lesson was made possible by a financial contribution from the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada.

This lesson is part of USE, UNDERSTAND & ENGAGE: A Digital Media Literacy Framework for Canadian Schools.


In this lesson, students play the educational card game #ForYou: A Game About Algorithms and use it as a prompt to learn about and discuss the role that algorithms, data collection, and machine learning play in their lives. After playing, they analyze the game as an example of a serious game and then design their own serious game to communicate some of what they have learned in the lesson.

Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • Learn how sorting and recommendation algorithms work
  • Learn how their personal information is used to customize their online experiences
  • Discuss the social and political implications of algorithmic content delivery, the collection and use of personal information, and machine learning
  • Analyze the codes and conventions of games
  • Communicate their learning through game design

This lesson and all associated documents (handouts, overheads, backgrounders) are available in an easy-print, pdf kit version.

Lesson Kit