TeachersFirst's Game-Based Learning Resources

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This collection of reviewed resources from TeachersFirst provides the editors’ choices of the TOP tools for game-based learning. Game-based learning is popular in today’s classrooms. Explore tools in various subject and topic areas. Differentiate for all students using games! Find games to help your students learn and review. 

 

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OK2Ask: Game-Based Learning: The Quest for Classroom Success - TeachersFirst

Grades
K to 12
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from March 2016, opens in Adobe Connect. The quest for classroom success begins with game-based learning. Learn tips,...more
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This recording of an OK2Ask online professional development session from March 2016, opens in Adobe Connect. The quest for classroom success begins with game-based learning. Learn tips, techniques, and tools to challenge and engage students. Game-based learning is a dynamic strategy that offers tremendous potential for meaningful and enriching experiences in the classroom. Enjoy sandbox time in the session to explore the vast collection of resources to suit a multitude of learners. This session is appropriate for teachers at all technology levels. As a result of this session and through individual follow-up, participants will... (1) Learn about the difference between gamification and game-based learning; (2) Learn game-based learning techniques and tips; (3) Evaluate tools and resources for game-based learning; (4) Share ideas for using tools with other participants; and (5) Start a project using one of the given tools.

tag(s): game based learning (113)

In the Classroom

Explore the many resources and ideas from this session and engage your students with game-based learning activities. Find additional information and links to tools at the session resource page. Learn more about OK2Ask and upcoming sessions here.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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PBS Kids Lab - PBS Kids

Grades
K to 4
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PBS Kids Lab offers access to the newest and most up to date games, shows, and information on PBS KIDS, specifically for math and reading skills. Choose from the many ...more
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PBS Kids Lab offers access to the newest and most up to date games, shows, and information on PBS KIDS, specifically for math and reading skills. Choose from the many activities in the Lab Menu such as games, collections, and videos. Educator Resources include classroom and out of school activities to accompany site resources.

tag(s): addition (239), counting (120), data (149), estimation (46), game based learning (113), geometric shapes (166), measurement (159), numbers (200), preK (291), vocabulary (325)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the math activity calendar located on the site, including quick math activities for every day of the year. Create a link to learning games and activities on classroom computers. Post a link on your class website for use at home. Share information on the site with parents to assist them in helping their child with math and reading skills. Be sure to share the PBS Parents Play & Learn app that provides over a dozen learning games for parents to play with their kids, best of all, it is available in English and Spanish!

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NASA - HIAD App - NASA

Grades
6 to 12
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Develop an inflatable spacecraft for NASA with this exciting activity. Design a HIAD (Hypersonic Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator) to bring cargo back from space. Begin with HIAD...more
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Develop an inflatable spacecraft for NASA with this exciting activity. Design a HIAD (Hypersonic Inflatable Aerodynamic Decelerator) to bring cargo back from space. Begin with HIAD Boot Camp and work your way up to advanced level using knowledge learned in stages along the way. Be careful, if your design is not strong enough, your spacecraft will burn up, and your mission is a failure.

tag(s): aeronautics (12), engineering (127), problem solving (274), STEM (151)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students explore this site independently or in small groups. Include this site with any STEM lessons or units. Share this activity with students interested in aeronautics or engineering as an excellent opportunity for practice and learning skills. Challenge cooperative learning groups to create videos with tips and suggestions for successful completion of this hands-on learning activity using a tool like wevideo, reviewed here. Share them on a site such as TeacherTube, reviewed here. HIAD would also be an excellent activity for an after school science club.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Bioman Biology - Brett Baughman

Grades
5 to 10
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Bioman Biology offers engaging interactives and virtual labs for learning biology content based on national standards. Find virtual labs and activities sorted by topics such as cells,...more
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Bioman Biology offers engaging interactives and virtual labs for learning biology content based on national standards. Find virtual labs and activities sorted by topics such as cells, body systems, and ecology. Use the search bar to look for specific content. In addition to the interactives and virtual labs, Bioman Biology offers online multiple choice quizzes over most topics. Optional teacher registration on the site provides the opportunity to assign quizzes and view student scores for games, quizzes, and virtual labs. Registration also has the advantage of students being able to directly submit their scores to you via email. Several activities are also available as downloads at iTunes. Bioman is available as an iOS app and on any device with a modern web browser and Internet access. The older version, in Flash, is still available, too.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): body systems (58), cells (104), classification (25), dna (68), ecology (135), evolution (102), game based learning (113), genetics (95), human body (126), meiosis (15), photosynthesis (32), respiration (17), scientific method (67)

In the Classroom

Introduce this site to your class on an interactive whiteboard or projector to review and reinforce concepts. If you are lucky enough to have access to iPads for your students, you could have the activities downloaded as apps to use for stations or early finishers. Be sure to include this site on your class webpage for students to access both in and outside of class for further practice. Have students create animated movies online using Dvolver - Movie Maker, reviewed here, to demonstrate biology concepts. Use an online flashcard maker, like Flashcard Stash, reviewed here, to review concepts before quizzes and tests.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Scholastic Family Playground - Scholastic

Grades
K to 2
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Scholastic Family Playground offers games, stories, videos, and more for early elementary students. Familiar stories and characters are the foundation for activities: Clifford, The...more
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Scholastic Family Playground offers games, stories, videos, and more for early elementary students. Familiar stories and characters are the foundation for activities: Clifford, The Magic School Bus, Word Girl, and others. Use the interactive menu at the top of the page to browse the site.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): game based learning (113), literacy (107), preK (291)

In the Classroom

Create a link to the Family Playground on classroom computers for use as a literacy center. Be sure to share a link to the site with parents on your class web page or newsletter. Take advantage of printables to use with classroom read alouds.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

Comments

I must appreciate the way you have expressed your feelings through your blog! Temple, TAMPS, Grades: 0 - 12

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Dice Roll - S Riley Teacherled

Grades
K to 8
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Virtual dice can be addicting when trying to figure out what number will come up next, and they are quiet! You'll never have these dice roll off the table and ...more
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Virtual dice can be addicting when trying to figure out what number will come up next, and they are quiet! You'll never have these dice roll off the table and under furniture. Choose from one, two, or three virtual die at a time. Simply click Roll and start the guessing.

tag(s): game based learning (113), mental math (29), operations (123), probability (131)

In the Classroom

Have fun in your classroom with virtual dice on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this with young students just learning to count. Have students take a guess about what number will "win." Use as an incentive and allow a student to roll the dice to meet a class goal. Set a goal of a large number, and every time a small goal is achieved, roll the dice and keep adding. Keep track until the class achieves the sum given. Practice basic addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division facts. Have team competitions and choose winners by even/odd, the greatest/least sum, greatest/least product or quotient. Allow students to work in small groups to play the mathematical practice games. For larger digits, roll two die simultaneously and get the greater number. Do the same to get double or triple digit numbers. Encourage your students to practice at home and play against their parents. Any time you need a dice, go to your bookmarked site. In older grades study probability and chance. Use the data and create line plots or graphs in various forms. Be sure to incorporate mean, median, and mode.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Manga High - Manga High

Grades
2 to 12
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Manga High is a game-based learning site for mathematics all aligned to Common Core standards. Enroll in the site to set up your class account and add members. Once your ...more
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Manga High is a game-based learning site for mathematics all aligned to Common Core standards. Enroll in the site to set up your class account and add members. Once your class is set up, use the dashboard to assign activities, monitor student progress, or assign challenges. Students can play games without having been assigned a class. However, they cannot save performance history or compete in challenges.

tag(s): addition (239), critical thinking (111), DAT device agnostic tool (170), data (149), decimals (132), division (169), equations (153), fractions (236), game based learning (113), geometric shapes (166), multiplication (222), problem solving (274), subtraction (199)

In the Classroom

Create your class account on Manga High and assign activities for your entire class or differentiate based on student performance levels. Use the search tool to assign tutorials based on grade level or Common Core standard. Add your class to public leaderboards and challenge students to improve their standing versus other classes. Be sure to provide a link to Manga High on your class website or blog for students to access from home.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Online Music Games - Russian Music Games

Grades
K to 12
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This site offers a virtual guitar, piano, drum, and more. Create compositions, record, and play them back. Ear training techniques supplement actual music lessons or memory. Catchy...more
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This site offers a virtual guitar, piano, drum, and more. Create compositions, record, and play them back. Ear training techniques supplement actual music lessons or memory. Catchy games teach music while focusing on fun. Use this tool in English or Russian.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): game based learning (113), music theory (41), musical instruments (47), musical notation (37)

In the Classroom

In music class, present basic information virtually using technology to catch your students' interest. No music classes? Present basic musical information to your students. Any students who require differentiation can learn music basics at centers to build their musical repertoire. During Readers' Theater, create masterpieces to promote the mood in the plot. Create centers with this tool to increase creativity with a gift rarely used in most classrooms, music.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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PBS Interactive Whiteboard Games - PBS Kids

Grades
K to 5
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PBS Kids offers a large selection of interactive whiteboard activities exploring different curriculum topics. All activities are related to their popular TV characters. Scroll through...more
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PBS Kids offers a large selection of interactive whiteboard activities exploring different curriculum topics. All activities are related to their popular TV characters. Scroll through to find resources sorted by math, language arts, social science, and the arts. Each activity includes a short description and suggested grade level. Find activities for sight words, vocabulary, estimation, measurement, civics, gravity, and much more. Click on any link to go directly to the activity or download.

tag(s): design (83), environment (321), estimation (46), game based learning (113), gravity (50), literacy (107), measurement (159), operations (123), painting (66), patterns (85), reading comprehension (118), sight words (37), suffixes (14), vocabulary (325), vocabulary development (125)

In the Classroom

Use activities from this site on your interactive whiteboard (or projector) to supplement current lessons. Create a link to specific activities on classroom computers for use as a learning center. Allow students to explore these sites on individual computers. Share links to games and activities on your class web page for students to try at home.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Sunnylands Civics Games - The Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands

Grades
4 to 12
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Sunnylands Civics Games offers a small but excellent selection of games about the Constitution and related topics. Topics include Branches of Power, The First Amendment, the Bill of...more
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Sunnylands Civics Games offers a small but excellent selection of games about the Constitution and related topics. Topics include Branches of Power, The First Amendment, the Bill of Rights, and more. You can try to be the leader of the Legislative Branch. Choose three main issues and the most productive way to succeed in your cause. Most activities begin with a short video followed by questions. Most activities also include a glossary of terms used.

tag(s): bill of rights (29), branches of government (50), constitution (87), game based learning (113), supreme court (23)

In the Classroom

Use the Sunnylands Civics Games to introduce Constitution-related topics to your class using an interactive whiteboard or projector. View videos together and pause as needed to discuss information. Challenge students to try the interactive activities on individual computers or at home. Have students use Fakebook, reviewed here, to create a "fake" page similar in style to Facebook about Americans described in the games. Have students create timelines (with music, photos, videos, and more) using Capzles, reviewed here, to trace the path of a bill or the writing of the Constitution.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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ABC Splash - ABC TV and Radio Australia

Grades
K to 10
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ABC Splash is a large educational website from Australia containing videos, games, and audio clips. Special sections for parents include informational articles, teaching resources,...more
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ABC Splash is a large educational website from Australia containing videos, games, and audio clips. Special sections for parents include informational articles, teaching resources, and education news. Choose from primary or secondary level to view offerings sorted into categories or go to games and sort by topic or grade level to find resources. Register on the site to store and save favorite activities for later use. The site was created in the Australia, so some of the pronunciations and spellings may differ from those in American English.

tag(s): addition (239), animals (290), antarctica (29), atmosphere (29), australia (35), cells (104), climate change (65), continents (49), counting (120), decimals (132), division (169), earth (231), earthquakes (50), ecosystems (89), egypt (70), energy (203), environment (321), food chains (22), forces (45), forensics (27), fossil fuels (18), game based learning (113), gold rush (19), human body (126), immigration (58), insects (71), light (49), maps (293), molecules (44), money (190), multiplication (222), nuclear energy (24), nutrition (158), oceans (154), parts of speech (67), percent (83), perimeter (30), place value (56), plants (155), probability (131), rhymes (32), rocks (50), songs (53), sound (105), subtraction (199), time (140), vietnam (36), volcanoes (65), weather (194), whole numbers (17), world war 1 (53), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

This site is excellent for enrichment. Include it on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class. Share this link on your class web page and/or in a parent newsletter for help with homework and school projects. These high-quality media resources will engage your students and enhance their learning.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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0h h1 - Martin Kool

Grades
3 to 12
8 Favorites 2  Comments
Oh h1 is an addicting and challenging interactive for problem solving and logic. Choose from four different grid sizes to play. Click on squares to make them red or blue. ...more
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Oh h1 is an addicting and challenging interactive for problem solving and logic. Choose from four different grid sizes to play. Click on squares to make them red or blue. The goal is to never have more than 2 squares of the same color in a row, and to have equal numbers of colors in all rows and columns. The rules are explained as you play. Increase difficulty by increasing the number of grids and completing in the shortest elapsed time.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (170), game based learning (113), logic (239), problem solving (274), puzzles (208)

In the Classroom

Oh h1 is perfect for use on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use this site as a computer learning center or on individual computers. Challenge students to increase difficulty levels and elapsed time. Share this engaging site with your gifted students for some mind stretching fun! Be sure to include a link on your class website or blog (parents may want to try this one too). Have students challenge their parents to see who can complete puzzles the quickest!

Comments

Great for logic practice. Melissa, , Grades: 0 - 5
Fun logic game-kids won't realize they are learning. Tammy, OR, Grades: 0 - 9

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Kahrds - VIP Learning

Grades
3 to 12
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Kahrds is a learning system based on flashcards you create and then integrate into several game options. Use your Kahrds as flashcards, crosswords, quizzes, hangman, or a quick type...more
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Kahrds is a learning system based on flashcards you create and then integrate into several game options. Use your Kahrds as flashcards, crosswords, quizzes, hangman, or a quick type activity where the definition is given and you type in the word. Create an account to begin. Create a set of Kahrds. Choose a category and decide on visibility. Options include public, private, or limited viewing. Create your Kahrds by inserting a word and its definition. Add as many words as you like until the set is complete. Most games require a minimum of 5 or more Kahrds in a set. Share sets using the link provided when saving a set. This tool will work on any device that can access the website. Kahrds will work on any device with an Internet connection. Some of the explanation/introduction videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid, reviewed here, to download the videos from YouTube.

tag(s): crosswords (18), flash cards (47), game based learning (113), quiz (89), quizzes (101), word study (79)

In the Classroom

Create flashcards for your classes -- or have them make their own. Try using them as an introduction to a concept, then again in the practice of the concept, and one more time as a final review. This would be great for teaching Latin prefixes and suffixes, words used in science terms, or for standardized test preparation. Try having students create flashcards and share with each other to quiz themselves within their groups. Show them how to carefully read through their classroom notes and underline the most important word or words in a sentence. Then have them leave out the most important words for their flashcards. Learning support teachers might want to have small groups create cards together to review together before tests. Have students create flashcard sets to "test" classmates on what they "teach" in oral reports.

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Engineering Games - engineering-games.net

Grades
3 to 12
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Encourage an interest in the fields of engineering, construction, and critical thinking through the many interactives available at Engineering Games. Choose from several categories...more
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Encourage an interest in the fields of engineering, construction, and critical thinking through the many interactives available at Engineering Games. Choose from several categories such as Robots, Logic Games, or Electricity. Also explore popular and new games using the categories provided. Each activity includes a short description and information on how to play. Some more complex challenges encourage you to view and follow in-game tutorials before attempting to play.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): circuits (21), electricity (90), energy (203), engineering (127), game based learning (113), logic (239), machines (30), problem solving (274), robotics (24), rockets (14), simple machines (38), STEM (151)

In the Classroom

Share these excellent STEM activities with your students. Introduce this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students explore this site independently or in small groups to find activities of interest. Use Engineering Games to differentiate learning experiences for students based on the difficulty of games. Challenge gifted students with more difficult activities. Provide a link to games on your class web page for students to play at home.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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The Sports Network 2 - Classroom, Inc.

Grades
7 to 9
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Sports Network 2 uses the exhilaration of a newsroom to offer practice in reading informational text and using critical thinking skills. Take on the role of a sports news show ...more
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Sports Network 2 uses the exhilaration of a newsroom to offer practice in reading informational text and using critical thinking skills. Take on the role of a sports news show producer and learn about the real-world job of broadcasting and communications. There is a very thorough Teachers Guide to read online, or you can save the guide in PDF format on your computer. There is an eighth-grade assessment for the Common Core Standards for Reading in English Language Arts and Literacy of Informational Text. The activity comes with a glossary. Rolling the mouse over a word or phrase will also give a definition. Explore the videos and teacher notes for each section of the program. The videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, they may not be viewable. You could always view the videos at home and bring them to class "on a stick" to share. Use a tool such as KeepVid reviewed here to download the videos from YouTube. The goals embedded in Sports Network 2 are college and career readiness. The program works with Linux, Mac, and Windows.

tag(s): critical thinking (111), game based learning (113), gamification (75), reading comprehension (118)

In the Classroom

Teachers sign up for the full program using their email, and then set up student accounts. The quickest way to understand and get started with SportsNetwork 2 is to click on the video. View the Teacher and Student Resources link in the middle of the page. Use the ten minute demo to introduce this site on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have students complete this 20-hour learning game on their own in class or as homework, too. Students print out reports to show completion of each section. The text portions might be challenging for ESL/ELL students or struggling readers. Pair weaker readers with strong readers as necessary. Completion of the activity could be scheduled by giving each student time on the class computers or scheduling the computer lab several days a week for part of the period.

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English Learning Games - Mn Yazilim

Grades
K to 12
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Develop English language skills through interactive play. Choose from learning activities in several categories. Examples of activities include crossword, matching, memory, and many...more
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Develop English language skills through interactive play. Choose from learning activities in several categories. Examples of activities include crossword, matching, memory, and many more. All interactives include simple directions to begin. Be careful of the advertisements! There aren't many, but they are included in the Game section. Also, this site was created in the UK. So American English speakers may notice some minor spelling differences.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): colors (80), crosswords (18), game based learning (113), grammar (215), listening (92), logic (239), parts of speech (67)

In the Classroom

Be sure to point out to students how to locate and play the interactives while avoiding the ads. Be patient when loading games, some take several seconds to load fully. Create a link to games on classroom computers. Add a link to your class website for use at home. Share with your school's ESL/ELL teacher as a resource for English language learners.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Tynker - Krishna Vedati

Grades
3 to 8
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Learn computer coding using simple and easy activities, lesson plans, and an interface sure to please all ages! Click Schools to access the free school activities, or click on Hour...more
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Learn computer coding using simple and easy activities, lesson plans, and an interface sure to please all ages! Click Schools to access the free school activities, or click on Hour of Code to find ones you can use at home or school. Build an animated character (everyone loves the zombie) and then animate it. Create Minecraft Mods and learn Game Design. Learn to code by dropping blocks of commands into sequence on the left side of the screen and seeing the results along the right. The lessons provide step by step instructions, missions, and other materials to learn to code. Teachers can create a class and add students to the class. Once lessons are assigned, the progress of students can be tracked. Click on student view of each lesson to see the tools and student tasks. Follow the instructions along the right panel. Note the tools that are along the top including undo and redo! This tool also features a question bar along the top. Note: This free portion of the resource offers three units of lessons, a visual programming environment, an art studio to draw and paint you own scenes, and a media gallery. The free units of lessons have unlimited student space.
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tag(s): animation (65), coding (50), computers (92), critical thinking (111), game based learning (113), gamification (75), problem solving (274), STEM (151)

In the Classroom

Use this tool to learn basic coding skills. Students will quickly catch on to this program when allowed to "tinker" and see what they can make. Provide a simple assignment with defined rules/tasks to learn the tools. Younger students may familiarize themselves more easily working with a partner. Be sure to recommend that students "ask three before me" (the teacher). Have students use a storyboard to write down what they plan to do/draw/say with their creation in order to keep tabs on students and their creations. When finished with these lessons, move to other free tools such as Scratch, reviewed here. Teachers of even very young gifted students can turn them loose with these challenges when they have already mastered math or science curriculum. Have them create a creature they can explain to the class or share with gifted peers in other classrooms.

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MobyMax: Complete K-8 Curriculum - MobyMax.com

Grades
K to 8
6 Favorites 0  Comments
   
Practice and improve student skills in the K-8 curriculum with MobyMax. Start with pre-testing students and assigning differentiated activities for reading, math, science, writing,...more
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Practice and improve student skills in the K-8 curriculum with MobyMax. Start with pre-testing students and assigning differentiated activities for reading, math, science, writing, grammar and vocabulary. Pre-tests target areas of struggle and assign curriculum based on need. Never again will students have to practice material they have already mastered. The progress tracking throughout is based on Common Core standards. Adjust assigned curriculum on your own if desired by reassigning a pre-test or assigning your own lessons. Register using your email and school information to begin. Add your student list. Once created students have their own individual login to begin placement testing. Set student IEP goals using Common Core standards. Choose from tabs on the teacher page to view student progress reports, testing, lessons, and IEP progress. There is a PRO account that costs money; this review is only for the FREE portion.
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tag(s): addition (239), differentiation (50), division (169), fluency (24), game based learning (113), multiplication (222), subtraction (199), vocabulary (325), vocabulary development (125)

In the Classroom

Create a classroom account. Use MobyMax during centers, for nightly homework, or computer lab time. Share with parents as an excellent resource for practicing math, reading, writing, grammar, science, and vocabulary skills at home. Use the pre-testing features at the beginning of the school year to get students started at the correct levels. Use this tool to differentiate for all students. Your gifted students can pretest out of material already learned and receive activities and instruction at their individual level. Remedial students can use this site to meet IEP goals (already saved on this site). Be sure to bookmark this site to use with all levels of students.

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