Educators know that it is necessary to include a wide-range of materials in their arsenal of daily activities. Doing the same activity day-after-day can be too repetitive which makes the activities boring and leads to lethargy in the classroom. And one of the most exciting activities that teachers can use with their students in the math classroom is game websites. These provide an exciting and interactive way for students to learn the skills which teachers are trying to impart to their students. Here are just a few ways to help your students by using these websites in your lessons:
- As remediation/response to intervention—One of the more problematic aspects of mathematics for students is that each skill builds on itself. If a student doesn’t master one particular aspect of the course, then they can be lost as the rest of the class moves on to the next part of it. This can be particularly difficult in the early grades when these skills will be necessary for success in future courses throughout elementary, middle and high school. That is why teachers can use these kids online math games as remediation or interventions for students who have fallen behind. This will give them the opportunity to practice and hone these skills after the rest of the class has moved on, without having to hold the rest of the class up.
- As supplementary work—One of the most common ways for teachers to reinforce work that they have assigned is with homework that is commonly referred to as drill-and-practice. These are repetitive problems that are meant to give students the ability to put their new skills into application. Rather than have the students complete a worksheet of twenty or thirty drill questions, math game websites are a good alternative because they can give them the ability to do the same activities with the added bonus that they are having fun with the video game aspect.
- As rewards—Not all students are created equally and many students do not work at the same pace. This is just a given. Math game websites, therefore, can also be used as a reward for those students who have completed the activities in the classroom ahead of the rest of their peers. Rather than having the students twiddle their thumbs or stare at the ceiling because they are bored, these games can be assigned to them either as a supplement to reinforce skills they have learned (most kids won’t complain since they will enjoy the video games) or, for the truly advanced students, they can learn new skills on their own and move forward using the games as a guide. Not holding students back is very important; if they can move forward then teachers should encourage this.
Video games aren’t just for the arcade or the home game systems. Teachers should embrace this new technology as a way of supplementing their lessons and adding to the possibilities their students have in the classroom. Doing so will encourage the students to be actively engaged and more eager to learn.