It is our mission to turn as much classroom content into a game as possible!
There is little else more satisfying than beating someone at a board game.
It doesn’t matter if it’s Candyland, Monopoly, or Settlers of Catan, a good board game puts my heart in a happy place. And winning the game….well at that point, you can’t wipe the smile off my face.
Games inspire students to approach content differently.
A good Jeopardy-style game (like these) asks students to recall and analyze information quickly.
A puzzle-style game (like these) helps scaffold information for students because they can blend their knowledge and the context clues provided by the puzzle pieces to deduce answers they’re uncertain about.
A board game-style game (like these), helps students to practice and review all kinds of skills when they are called upon to do so.
Learning through observation
Now, I want you to think about the gameshows you watch on television. We all have our favorites, Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy, The Wall, etc. We watch these shows and we learn. We aren’t even playing. Games in the classroom have the same effect.
Even if the students aren’t playing, they are hearing questions and answers. They are getting the information, and even from outside the game, they are invested in it.
Recycling old content into a game
Let’s take a moment to reflect on what is coming up in the school year.
- What content are you going to introduce?
- What skills are you going to assess?
- Have any of your units fallen flat this year?
- Are there skills students desperately need to practice more?
If you have content that students are struggling with, maybe it’s time to practice in a new way.
We have been creating a lot of games this year, and you often see us talking about games we’ve created, but now, it’s time for you to create the game you NEED in your classroom.
We have provided a free digital game board for you that can be used with any content. The gameboard is complete with moveable pieces, digital dice students can roll, and a fun, donut theme.
Pair this digital game board with the content you want to introduce or review to gamify your old content.
Preparing to use the Donut-themed Digital Game Board in class
You can use this digital game board with any information you want to gamify any content in your classroom quickly.
Your prep list is simple
- Students need access to a device with internet if they want to use the digital die
- You need to pick 30 questions, problems, or pieces of content you want to introduce or practice with students
- Put the questions and answers on an answer key that is numbered 1-30.
Make sure to review:
- How to use the die
- The directions for playing
- What happens when a question is answered correctly/incorrectly
- How and when to use the bonus questions
- What happens when someone gets to the end or wins the game
Don’t worry all of the instructions (along with a student copy of the game instructions) are included in the download!
Although students will review the content simply by being a part of the game, another way you can help students internalize the information is by including a recording sheet as part of your process.
By asking students to complete a recording sheet, they are hearing the questions and writing down the correct answers. Simply writing down the answers is helping students connect the questions and answers on a deeper level.
Just because our games are themed by different kinds of content, doesn’t mean yours have to be. Try mixing and matching content to make the game more challenging. Especially toward the end of the school year when you want to review a lot of different types of information. Include math and ELA questions, quotes from classroom speakers, classroom procedures, history content, etc.
Differentiate Multiple Questions/Answer Lists
Maybe some students need to review nouns and verbs while others need to review math facts or context clues, create more than one list of questions, and place students in groups according to what they need. You can also create different levels of questions to meet students where they are! Recruit your special education teachers and ESL teachers to help you develop questions to meet the special needs of the students in your class.
Gamifying classroom experiences adds a unique layer of challenge and focus for students, and we can’t wait to see what kinds of questions you come up with!
You hold the power to create fun games designed specifically for your unique kiddos, but if you run into any snags, don’t be afraid to reach out! We’d love to help.