Posts tagged ‘Maths’

Award-Winning Teacher Utilizes a Wealth of Classroom Technology

In his classroom, Mr. Thompson has been using blogs to communicate class activities to parents and SMARTboard technology to have students create powerpoint presentations. In addition, Mr. Thompson utilizes movie technology for both classroom lessons and student products. This caring and dedicated teacher even provides “Podcasts” on his web page that give verbally recorded instructions for parents on how to help children with their math and reading instruction.

Below we present our interview Mr. Thompson in question and answer format. We have included numerous links to his classroom materials including “The Morning Work Show,” “The Literacy Fastbreak,” and his classroom web page.

Author: Tom Hanson, OpenEducation Blog, 27th March 2008

Full article available here.

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March 29, 2008 at 10:06 pm Leave a comment

Board games ‘boost early maths skills’

Playing four 15-minute sessions of board games such as snakes and ladders can improve a child’s mathematical abilities significantly, according to a study of four and five-year-olds. And the improvement in numerical tests is still measurable nine weeks later.The researchers who conducted the study said nursery classes should include numerical board games to familiarise children with numbers before they go to school. It is also an easy way for parents to give their children a head start in maths.

Author: James Randerson, The Guardian, 25th March 2008

Full article available <a href=”http://education.guardian.co.uk/schools/story/0,,2267895,00.html?gusrc=rss&feed=8″ target=”_blank”>here</a>.

March 26, 2008 at 10:32 am Leave a comment

Kids use latest technology to help one another excel

LINCOLN MIDDLE SCHOOL There’s a video on YouTube that has generated nearly 1,000 views since it was posted last August. It isn’t the latest impressive basketball dunk or footage of pirates versus ninjas, but rather an instruction on adding fractions using different denominators.

The lesson on lowest common denominators is led by “Billy Billy,” a pseudonym for eighth-grade Lincoln Middle School student Aleya Spielman, whose voice in the video guides her fellow classmates how to solve a particular type of problem.

Author: Melody Hanatani, Daily Press Staff Write, 26th February 2008

Full articel available here.

March 12, 2008 at 3:32 pm Leave a comment

Game-Based Learning Website – supersmartgames.com

I recently came across www.supersmartgames.com through my research and it looks promising. It provides links and ratings of learning-based games which you can sort by age group, subject or platform. Some of the games from what I have seen have the commercial game look and some are actually commercial games. The remainder are mini games but ones that which incorporate elements of game design to an extent.

You can view the maths games available by the following link:
http://www.supersmartgames.com/blogcategory/61/

Here are some examples I picked out from the maths games on the website which illustrate the varied products.

Arcademic Math Games

“These educational video games offer an innovative approach to teaching basic academic skills by incorporating features of arcade games and educational practices into online games that motivate, intrigue, and teach!”

Maths games by Arcademic Skill Builders include multi and single player and are simple but aesthetically pleasing mini games. They have a clean simple casual game feel but have a strong focus on learning. You can have a look at the games available on their website.

I think these games are definitely an improvement on the common dry content quiz type of elearning with some graphics slapped on. However, with simple maths like addition and subtraction it is hard to get away from actually showing the sum. With more complex maths, and an audience who are used to playing complex commercial games, the dry content needs to be presented in an interesting way.

DimensionM by Tabula Digita

“Shipwrecked at sea, Darienne Clay, daughter of a brilliant scientist at the University of Hawaii’s new biotech program, washes up on the shore of an abandoned island after the university’s summer school research vessel she was on meets with disaster.”

None of the demos work on my PC! You may have luck on a Mac. The website can be found here. See the demos under ‘Games > Game Demos’ and detailed video clips of how the system works under ‘How It Works > Video’.

Tabula Digita seem to have ticked all the boxes, except that it wasn’t clear from the videos how the games cover other aspects of maths. All that was shown were line equations and coordinates. The polish and gameplay seem to be of a high commercial standard and the learning and maths is integrated very well into the context of the game. Tabula Digita, from what I have seen, seem to be far ahead of the others when it comes to educational games. They have included instructional modules and assessments in the game which are completed pre-missions and acumulate data on the child’s progress and scores. They run through the main rules behind the maths theories and make sure the students understand them before starting their next mission. Additionally there are monitoring tools available for the teachers to keep track of data and convert them to other usable formats.

Tabula Digita have developed an extremely powerful tool and I do think these are the kind of games that should be developed to aid learning. Of course subject matters do differ but this provides an example of how well learning material can be presented using game design techniques and by this, truly engaging the audience.

Great Geometry Adventure

“In Gary the Swamp Frog’s Great Geometry Adventure, you play through a total of seventy-five levels of geometric madness encompassing shape recognition, perimeter determination, area computation, and volume calculation. Study hard and learn well to use your knowledge to free your friends”

No demo available but there is a little bit of information on the website. To me this looks like another quiz type game but with more immersive graphics. Questions come up on the screen with typical multiple choice answers. Quite disappointing after seeing what Tabula Digita are doing!

Timez Attack by Big Brainz

“Timez Attack is an amazing new video game exclusively for kids to easily learn multiplication tables. You have got to see this game to believe it.

It is easily the best game we have ever seen for teaching the times tables. Timez Attack is as high-tech and entertaining as any of the best video games. It is engaging, fun, and highly effective.”

Have a look at their website here. Despite the maths being plonked into the game in quite an obvious way I think this works for its target market. The gameplay replicates many 1st person adventure pc games and motivates and engages the player making them want to play more. Not much notice is given to the maths while playing as the main goals of the player are to find keys to open doors and explore the worlds. The maths is put to the sidelines in the players’ minds as the graphics are so immersive, kind of like a clean Doom.

Author: Alexandra Matthews, Gaming & Learning, 10th March 2008

March 10, 2008 at 11:15 am 1 comment

Chicago Public Schools to Use Tabula Digita Game

Chicago Public Schools to Use Tabula Digita’s Game-Based Algebra Software in After-School Programs

To meet the growing demand for stimulating, yet curriculum-rich activities in its after-school programs, Chicago Public Schools will offer Tabula Digita’s DimensionM™ for Pre-Algebra and Algebra educational video games in four of its after-school program locations. This marks the first step in the roll out of the immersive learning program, which will enhance students in learning and applying mathematics in math classes in classrooms across the district.

“Our millennium students are digital learners and as such their brains are wired differently,” said Sharnell Jackson, Chief eLearning officer for Chicago Public Schools. “We felt compelled to identify exceptional teaching and learning tools for our after-school programs that offer a high-level of engagement, are rich in competition, and correlate to the core instruction being given in the classroom. We found all of that and more with the DimensionM™ multi-user virtual learning environment.”

In the action-filled DimensionM™ video game series, students face numerous mathematical obstacles, develop team-based strategies, and navigate through a series of mazes to score the most points. The gaming format provides an immediate “need-to-know the math” environment with lessons based on learning standards developed by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.

Jackson added, “We were taken by the immersive, three-dimensional learning environments that DimensionM™ offers. Students are literally transported to a virtual world bursting with action — which they love. What the teachers embrace is the depth of Algebra-readiness instruction incorporated in the games and their correlation to the NCTM standards and our own content taught in regular-day classrooms.”

Supplementing existing classroom textbooks and instructional models, the flexible and easily integrated DimensionM™ series also provides automatic progress tracking for each student. This allows classroom teachers to understand how their students are advancing and gaining mastery of specific concepts via their after school program activities.

“Educational video games are emerging as an important digital media learning educational tool that, when properly designed, offers stimulation and motivation to increase engagement and ultimately help students reach higher levels of achievement,” said Ntiedo Etuk, CEO and co-founder of Tabula Digita. “The educators in Chicago have seen first-hand how our DimensionM™ gaming software will give their students a way to master difficult content by learning in a way that is most relevant to them.”

Participating schools in the after-school enterprise include Eli Whitney Elementary, Logandale Elementary, Marsh Elementary, and Waters Elementary. Future plans call for the Chicago students to face off with students from New York City in a virtual multiplayer math tournament to be announced sometime this spring.

The full product series of DimensionM™ games are available for purchase in three versions: site license, district license, and an introductory “educator-version” bundled in packs of 15 individual user-licenses. The entire product series license is renewable on an annual basis and the software is available on both Windows and Macintosh platforms. For more information, please visit www.DimensionM.com.

About Tabula Digita

Tabula Digita is an educational video game company focused on delivering innovative and effective educational games to students and institutions. Through its fusion of education and technology-based immersive learning systems, Tabula Digita successfully offers standards-based, high impact educational tools that engage middle and high school students in learning and applying Pre-Algebra and Algebra I concepts.

In 2006 Tabula Digita received the Macworld Editor’s Choice award. This year the company received the prestigious “Newcomer of the Year” CODiE Award from the Software Industry Information Association (SIIA), recognized for “offering a product that has the potential for significant impact on students and teachers.” Tabula Digita was founded in Manhattan’s Silicon Alley in 2003 and is the brainchild of entrepreneur Ntiedo Etuk and award-winning electronic game designer Robert Clegg. For more information, please call 1-888-9-Tabula or 1-888-982-2852, or visit http://www.DimensionM.com.

About Chicago Public Schools

As the third largest school district in the United States, Chicago Public Schools serve over 408,000 students in kindergarten through twelfth grade. The district’s student population, divided among 655 schools, is 46 percent African-American, 39 percent Hispanic, 8 percent Caucasian, and 7 percent Asian/American Indian/Multi-Racial.

Author: Business Wire, 29th February 2008

March 5, 2008 at 9:46 am Leave a comment


About

The purpose of this blog is to provide insight into the impact of computer games and pop culture, and effective ways of incorporating the positive surplus into learning experiences.

Please feel free to add comments and email me with any queries. I am also interested in relevant project collaboration.

Name: Alexandra Matthews
Location: UK

Email: info@gamingandlearning.co.uk / alex@gamingandlearning.co.uk

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