Matthew R. Stover
Easy Ways to Gamify Your Classroom
Gamification in education uses gaming elements to motivate and drive their curriculum. Students become heavily invested in the competitive aspect of the day-to-day activities while educators know exactly where students stand with formative assessments built in at every twist and turn.
While not every educator has the resources to transform their classrooms into a fantastical site of adventure, even the simplest addition of gamification can increase student motivation.
High-tech or old-school, teachers at any grade level can incorporate basic gaming elements into their curriculum for more student engagement. Even administrators can get in on the action by creating a school- or district-wide challenge for reading, grades, or some other measurable achievement.
New apps and programs are flying onto the market to help teachers to gamify their learning, with many LMS systems pre-built with these features. Even Google Classroom contains templates that can easily gamify your lessons. The top 5 apps remain solidly on both tech and education websites: Gimkit, Class Dojo, Kahoot, Book Widgets, and ClassCraft. If you hear students talking about Duolingo, Adventure Academy, or BrainPOP, they’ve already gamified their learning at home.
Modeling your educational journey as a quest is a simple way for gamification to enter your classroom. Provide stopping points along the way, with measurable achievements. Have students create their own team banners and individual avatars to identify and mark successes along the way. Some type of visual tracker, like a timeline, gameboard path, or even a string around the classroom with clear goals can amp up the fun in your classroom.
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