Today, I will briefly look at a ‘game’ I use in class. Many of you have heard of it, have tried it, have a love/hate relationship with it.

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OVERVIEW

Prodigy Game is a math focused, game-based website. It is designed for grades 1-8. It plays like a role playing game where students create an avatar and name (it is very unlikely that they get a name that is their real name (they have a limited choice for first name and a fantasy last name- ie…David Hightower or Sally Strongbow) and they can explore the world within Prodigy. While they are on quests or exploring, they have an opportunity to ‘battle’ others. What this means is there avatar can ‘attack others’, cast spells to defeat them. The graphics are not graphic in their battles.

The way students win their battles is they have to do math. 🙂 This is the fun part, for teachers. If they get the question right, their attack is more powerful. If they get it wrong, the attack is weak or it misses the opponent.

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Students have the ability to find other students in their class by going to a specific world and looking for them there. I had many students coming in at lunch to battle, AKA do math. Muahaha. They never knew. 🙂

Teachers can assign standards for the kids to work one. So, if you are working on adding 2-digit numbers, you create an assignment and the next 5 questions the students have to answer are based on adding 2-digit numbers. Then, you can generate a report on how well the students did. The cool thing is that you can see how your class did on each question, and what they answered if they got it wrong…so you can see the thinking (or lack of) on each problem. Pretty handy.

Setup is pretty simple. Create a class and print out login info for kids.

PROS

  • It is fun.-No, learning doesn’t have to be the opposite of fun. 🙂
  • They are practicing math
  • Teacher can set the grade level for students to practice
  • Teacher can give specific assignments, based on a standard
  • It’s free.

CONS

  • It is fun.– Any teacher knows that sometimes fun things are a little more high energy. So, you will have to have some procedures in place so it stays a good tool.
  • When creating an assignment, it does not have a Common Core standard next to it (ie..NBT.2). It DOES have that info on a report showing what standards the students were working on.

More could be said, but I have to get going. If you have not tried it, now is a great time. After testing our kids could use a brain break. This could be a good option…plus they are still working on skills.

If you have tried it, what are some tips/tricks you’ve learned to help manage it?

Use it or don’t.

Derrick

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