Sunday, April 28, 2013

DragonBox App~ Secretly Teaches Algebra to Students

DragonBox Algebra App~ A Learner Centered Approach

Why DragonBox?
As every math teacher or parent knows, teaching algebra can be difficult. Before students even enter the classroom they are filled with negative thoughts about algebra. It’s hard. It’s boring. It sucks! There are hundreds of tweets every hour talking about how much people hate algebra.
Unfortunately, algebra is also the biggest hurdle students must clear before learning more advanced mathematics in university or beyond.
This is why we created DragonBox. We want to remove the negativity surrounding algebra by making it as simple as possible to understand and learn algebra´s big ideas, with or without help, at your own pace.
This is not about creating a game, an educational app, or using technology or tablets in the classroom.
It is about listening to the students and creating the best possible resource to learn algebra from a student's perspective.
It demystifies algebra and gives the player confidence in algebra.
Mathematics is the result of a several centuries of development by brilliant minds. Its own language has changed over time. What might seem simple and logical to teachers, who understand the language, can seem overwhelming and confusing for students.
In addition, the order in which we teach mathematics is also the result of different policies and pedagogical ideologies, which do not necessarily account for the optimal setup to learn these subjects.How Does it Teach Algebra?
DragonBox was conceived with the belief and the vision that human beings are hardwired to learn extremely complicated concepts. By placing the student at the center of the learning process one can engage the brain of the students in an optimal manner, achieving results in agreement with the marvelous capacity of the human brain.
Therefore, DragonBox does not teach mathematics in the “right order”. It starts by teaching algebra before arithmetic.
DragonBox initially uses pictures rather than numbers or variables to demonstrate the ''game'' in algebra before spending time on the mere formalism that is used in classrooms. Some teachers and parents have the impression that the game does not teach mathematics. On the contrary, the game is focusing on mathematical rules from the very first level to the very end of the game.
DragonBox is based on the vision that children should be trained to think creatively. Players discover algebraic rules and play with them. They have to use the rules to solve puzzles which leads to a lot of trial and error. It also encourages a tremendous amount of high level thinking, which can be difficult to achieve in a classroom setting.
But learning is not only about rules. It is about discovering what works, and what doesn´t.
This approach might frighten some people, but not children. This is simply the way people learn.
New Additions:
"Now, we are proud to announce the launch of:
       DragonBox Algebra 12+
We have taken all of the feedback we got from our early adopters and used it to make this a longer, more comprehensive algebra learning tool optimized for schools and kids that are 12 years and older.

DragonBox Algebra 12+ includes more difficult algebra topics, such as parenthesis and factorization. It also comes with a Teacher's Manual detailing how the game can effectively be used as a part of the school day.

DragonBox 12+ is available for IOS and Android and will soon be available on PC & Mac and as a web version for schools."

Click Here to Read About DragonBox App~ Innovative, award-winning app that teaches Algebra

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

MinecraftEdu ~ Engage and Educate

My wish list for my students = MinecraftEdu = Engage, Educate, Collaborate, Problem Solve, Create, Design, Build, Inspire Curiosity...The list goes on and on...

Every day, more and more teachers are using the world-building game Minecraft to engage and educate. The game is a true phenomenon and gamers young and old are using it in countless creative ways. Practitioners of Games Based Education have realized the potential and have embraced Minecraft in classrooms around the world.

Our custom MinecraftEdu mod was created by teachers, for teachers. It works right on top of the original Minecraft game and is designed for classroom use. We've lowered the barriers so that ANY teacher can benefit from this amazing game.


  • All special features are accessible through in-game menus... no config files or command lines!
  • Write assignments and instructions that are visible to students.
  • Students can use their names, pick a gender, and change their skin while playing.
  • Password-protected "Teacher Mode" with access to many powerful abilities.
  • Run a custom server for each of your classes with just a few clicks.
  • Ability to save and load worlds and activites.
  • Powerful world-building tools to quickly create your own lessons.
  • Custom teacher-only blocks that can give information, create boundaries, or control where students can build.
  • Teleport students, give items, and allow flying.
  • Ability to mute/unmute and freeze/unfreeze students.
  • Change the time, weather and game modes on the fly.
  • Includes an expansive Tutorial World to introduce new players to the game.

Click Here to Check out Minecraft.EDU Updated Version

Monday, April 22, 2013

More Fraction Games~ Interactive Educational Games

Team 16,

Below are even more fraction interactive games.  One size does not fit all.  Find a game or games that you like and play while learning.

Click Here to Play more Fraction Games on Math

Click Here to Play Even More Fraction Games

Click Here to Play Science Games to Learn Fractions~ Integrating Science and Math

New Minecraft Projects~ Watch and Enjoy!

New Sketch-Up Project~ Dylan's house~ Enjoy!

ARkive~ Explore 15,000 of the World's Endangered Species

Team 16,

Check out this site to get excited about our endangered species project.  We will be starting it right after we finish the math MCAS.  Happy Exploring!  What animal sparks your interest?

Click Here to Check out an Endangered Species Website

Fraction Number Line Games

Team 16,

Below are some links to learn fractions using number lines.  Have fun learning while playing!

Click Here to Practice Fractions Using Number Line Games~ Battleship Number Line Game

Click Here to Play More Number Line Fraction Games

Click Here to Play Pearl Diver on Math Snacks~ Learn more about Number lines and Number Sense

Visual Fraction Games~ Have Fun and Learn While you Play

Team 16,

Click on the links below to play visual fraction games!  We start our fraction unit tomorrow.  Happy exploring and learning!

Click Here to Check out Visual Fractions and Practice

Click Here to Play Visual Fraction Games

Click Here to Practice Visual Fraction Games at Math Playground

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Tynker~ Imagine-Create-Program

Tynker is a new computing platform designed specifically to teach children computational thinking and programming skills in a fun and imaginative way. 

Tynker unlocks STEM skills:

Computer programming develops the same skills that help students succeed in science, technology, math and engineering - Logical, linear thinking; planning & organizing, problem solving, modeling and more.

Kids learn while having fun:

Kids animate drawings, create music, build games, craft e-books, publish mobile games and more, all while building computational skills. Learning is intuitive and interactive, as visual drag-n-drop coding eliminates syntax.

Team 16- Ask your parents to check their email for your log-in information.  Have fun exploring!

Click Here to Check Out Tynker

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Learning Computer Science from Wayland High School Students and Having FUN

Click on the link below, click on slideshow, and enjoy!  We had an amazing day yesterday with a group of Wayland High School students.  They taught us Computer Science.  Ask your child what they learned about the inside of a computer.  The students ALL were engaged, happy, learning, laughing, joking, creating, designing, and playing!

It was a day we will never forget.  Thank you Wayland High School!!!

Click here to view photos of Computer Science and Fun with Wayland high schoolers

Ava the Scientist~ Create, Design, Invent

Click on the link below to view pictures of Ava working her creative magic.  See for yourself that in creating and inventing, sometimes you get wet!  She is an inspiration!

Ava the Scientist~ Watch her Amazing Creations