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Wednesday, August 02, 2017

3 Ways Game-Based Learning Can Boost Math Skills | EdTech Magazine: Focus on Higher Education

Photo: Meghan Bogardus Cortez
"From providing motivation to assisting struggling students, games can help educators with tricky concepts" summarizes Meghan Bogardus Cortez, associate editor with EdTech: Focus on K–12.

Photo: moodboard/thinkstock

Games can be a great tool for teaching students about complex topics like digital citizenship, politics and even science. With about 47 percent of kids aged 4 to 13 playing digital games every day, game-based learning is poised to further engage children in the classroom.

One classroom in Tampa, Fla., has discovered that digital games can help some children with mathematics. Gregory Smith, a fifth-grade teacher in Hillsborough County, tells Education Week that after incorporating math-strategy games — think word problems with corresponding interactive elements — his students’ math-skills scores went from an average of 49 percent to 83 percent.

The students themselves also reported more enjoyment from math.
“I’ve seen enthusiasm in some of the children who normally didn’t do as well, paper-to-pencil, but when they’re doing it because of the game, they’re doing better at it,” Smith tells Education Week.

Based on Smith’s classroom experience, the Hillsborough school district is conducting a study this summer to see what impact math games make on a larger scale, as well as what difference they might make to standardized test results.

From engaging a wider variety of students to assisting with the visualization of complex problems, game-based learning is a good fit for math students.

Source: EdTech Magazine: Focus on Higher Education