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UK's Secretary of State for Education: video games will save the classroom

By Emil
Jul 6, 2011
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  1. Michael Gove, UK's Secretary of State for Education, believes that video games can help aid the study of mathematics and science in the nation's classroom. He used Marcus Du Sautoy,…

    Read the whole story
     
  2. insect

    insect TS Evangelist Posts: 315   +114

    "When I was younger, my parents bought me a Math Blaster game. I spent quite a bit of time doing exactly what Gove is referring to: shooting aliens and learning math. I remember being frustrated, just like when I learn a difficult math concept the standard way, but I also remember being ecstatic much more often when I figured out a a problem, a puzzle, or a brainteaser and as a result progressed in the game."

    Ditto! I think I learned to problem-solve, do math, and basics of English all through basic puzzle-games before I even got to school. Heck, even to learn specifics of some topics (like oxidation numbers for elements) I still turn to games online.
     
  3. Only certain types of games can actually enhance learning such as http://mathiqgames.com where math skills embedded into the game's mechanics. General "brain-games" are more of the usual suspects that promise tons of benefit, but hard to measure actual results.
     
  4. It seems that we are always looking for some magical way to put knowledge into our children's
    heads.
    The idea mentioned in the article may be a way to supplement learning, but computers are not the answer to all educational instruction.
     
  5. Lokalaskurar

    Lokalaskurar TS Enthusiast Posts: 544

    Agreed, partly anyway.

    Just worth to be mentioned; some video game designers have been "smuggling" in interesting knowledge and science in some video game titles! Even though we're talking standard edu. here, I'd for one would've never have known what 'Cherenkov radiation' is if it weren't for Mass Effect. And it was the sole reason for my final (neat) grade in Physics ed.

    And I'm very thankful for that grade!
     
  6. I too have seen that game mechanics have worked with students. However, it is imperative that the resources they are using are proven to drive results; otherwise the students are actually just playing. My experiences utilizing Penda, with our middle school and me personally have had great results due to Penda’s student engagement and the motivation using avatars. The brain is wired such that students want connectivity with other students as well as the challenge that other students provide. The creation of the avatars elicits emotional engagement in the amygdale, the part of the brain that facilitates authentic engagement. Utilizing Penda 100% of my students yielded on average 3.4 years academic gains in math and is should be mentioned that over 75% of my students had a learning disability. Penda helped our students find academic success and I believe Penda can help all students with the same success. I make the above statement with the frame of reference of having over 20 years experience in the field of education and over a decade of brain research in the area of student learning. I have been an administrator, a college professor, a teacher and have written a book about brain research and learning (ALPHA). Thus, I feel that I am well versed in the area of student engagement, academic success and learning.
     
  7. Ooh gosh! What a great idea! Using computer games to teach maths. If only we teachers had thought of that...

    Oh yeh...we did think of that - about 20 years ago. It's become standard practice with many other amazing ways to teach maths which Gove will no doubt discover over the coming months and years. Like learning our times tables or using social constructivist methodologies to scaffold learning...

    Remind me... how is this this ignorant little man qualified to tell us how to do our job?

    Oh.

    He isn't...
     

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