Too often we don't want to give students any "free" time because we have so much to teach them, or they need extra time to get their work done. I tend to think differently. I think students will learn important lessons from the challenge and self-discovery of exploring a game on a site that reinforces what I have taught them. I'm willing to cut my lesson short once a week to allow for some gaming time. I'm even willing to shorten an assignment once a week to gain some extra time.
A few guidelines to consider:
- Play the game yourself and see if the game appropriately challenges your students.
- If the game has directions, I don't teach the game to the students. They need to read the directions themselves.
- Bookmark the sites so that you have them for the next year.
Check out these sites I have shared with my students that correlate well with what we are learning right now.
Order of Operations:
#1 Royal Rescue- super challenging, but very doable. Really made the students think critically about what they had learned!
#2 Millionaire Game - The problems get more difficult as the money amounts rise. I had to teach my students exponents in order to play this game.
#3 IXL - This site is amazing! Practically every skill that I have taught is on this site. Skills range from P-K to 8th grade. There is a limit as to how much a person can use of this site without a membership. We have been using the free portion. A membership costs $79 yearly. My son's teacher has the membership and talks very highly of it. The problems get progressively more difficult and challenge students to work hard to pass each level.
#4 Multiplying Fractions Millionaire Game - just like the Millionaire game above, but for multiplying fractions.
#5 Math Basketball - Dividing Fractions game.
#6 Yong's China Quest Adventure - This is one of my favorite games to share with students. This game teaches us about the Ancient Chinese culture which is perfect since we are reading about the Chinese in our reading series. This game takes patience, perseverance, cleverness and problem solving. There are directions, but students really need to figure out on their own how to succeed and get to the next level.
I always start with the standard that I am teaching and search for games that match that skill. With all of the amazing gaming sites available today it is becoming easier and easier to find games that match well to whatever skill I am teaching. Please consider using a bit of gaming in your students' day.