Math Videogame Scorecard

I teach a class for our seniors who have not passed our state standardized tests.

One day a week we have a 90 minute “block period” where it is very difficult to maintain productivity with this particular class. This combined with a lack of basic skills has led me to experiment with taking the students to a computer lab and working on skills there.

I wanted have them try out certain educational games (at for example Fuel the Brain and Funbrain) but my experience in the past is

a.) students get wildly undirected, and feel free to diverge to MySpace, ESPN, YouTube, etc.
b.) it’s difficult to measure quality of learning and progress
c.) web sites with game collections are often hit or miss with pedagogical value, and may have only one or two games worth playing (and students will often want to float to the far-less-educational examples)
d.) students have no idea if they’re doing well and when a particular game score indicates they need more practice

So I designed scorecards:

scoresample

Having the “bronze”, “silver”, and “gold” achievement levels akin to the Achievements on Xbox Live seems to be enough gentle encouragement to get the students trying for high scores naturally, and all my other concerns listed above have gone away naturally.

(Score cards in Word format: Scorecard 1, Scorecard 2.)

5 Responses

  1. Thank you!!

    I’ve been following you for a while and this post was the right link at the right time.

    I’m in the middle of putting together a page of links for use with a variety of classes from grade 1-8 that I only see once a month.

    The games you mentioned are really useful for these levels, and I’ll definitely use the score card idea for accountability with the older students.

  2. Hey, great post. I think this definitely has the potential to get some major enthusiasm out of students who generally don’t have much.

  3. I love this! I teach a variety of different remedial classes in middle school and I love to incorporate technology, as that is sometimes the ONLY thing that grasps their attention. I have struggled with how to keep them active, engaged, and up-to-date on their progress. I don’t want their computer time to be “game time” without any educational purpose. This is a great way to combat this. I would also maybe try this for any sort of game, as I have found that scavenger hunts, jeopardy, and bingo also tend to loose their meaning with my lowest performers. Have you tried to implement this strategy with things other than technology?

    • Have you tried to implement this strategy with things other than technology?

      Just re-reading the comments and realized I missed this question (sorry!)

      I have not tried it but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work as a differentiated instruction strategy. Often when I have a assignment of that sort I tell the students to, say, pick 3 out of the 5 problems to solve, but there’s no reason one couldn’t present in such a way that they choose between 3 and 5. The only issue is, outside of a game context, would they? It may be restricted to scavenger hunts etc. as you mention.

  4. […] I’ve been interested in videogames for learning and will certainly follow this competition, I mainly bring this up because of the corner […]

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