EdTech Tools That Use Gamification to Improve Student Learning

Gamifiying the learning experience has a variety of benefits. According to Knewton, a digital learning platform, some of these benefits include:

  • Investment: Students feel price in the work they do within the game.
  • Progression: It’s easier to see how you’ve progressed via levels, badges and points.
  • Curiosity: Receiving unexpected rewards, navigating through new games and more.

As such, it’s a valuable tool for reaching every single student in your classroom, especially those who struggle with engagement. There are plenty of gamification platforms, apps and tools on the market, but not all of them are valuable—a good gamified learning experience is grounded in education, with gamification elements added throughout; some tools simply distract.

These five apps are focused on education and provide you with a great place to start if you’re new to gamification.

Quizizz

Quizzes are helpful for you, but often stressful for students, even if they have studied. You can get the information and comprehension proof you’re looking for, while making testing less scary for students with Quizizz.

Simply create your own quiz, or choose one of their curated question sets and share the Game Code with your students. As students begin taking the quiz, independently or in small groups, you can watch progress from your class dashboard.

Students can see how many they’re getting right and wrong in real-time, along with the class leaderboard. Leaderboards are one of the most motivating aspects of learning gamification—all students want to be at the top. In fact, 60 percent of learners said that leader board would motivate them.

Whooo’s Reading

Simple gamification can motivate your students to read more every day; improving reading comprehension and helping them develop a love of reading. With Whooo’s Reading’s gamified platform, students earn Wisdom Coins for logging reading, “liking” their peers’ reading responses, and answering CCSS-aligned comprehension questions.

They can use these points to decorate their virtual “Owlvatar” with hats, shoes and various accessories. The more points they have, the cooler their Owlvatar looks, which is surprisingly motivating.

“I introduced this to my 6th graders last week, and they are IN LOVE with it!!! It’s amazing how motivated they are to read just so they can customize their owl and screen background,” Kelley S., teacher.

Zondle

This gamified learning tool has had more than 302 million questions answered and can be used in a whole-class, small-group or independent-student setting. You can use Zondle for assessment, homework and in-class engagement; all the while students are having fun learning.

You can create your own questions—Zondle allows you create more than 20 different types of questions, many of which can be accompanied by images or audio—and use the integrated grade book to see student progress, achievements and behavior rewards.

Know:Re

Give your students a personalized learning experience with Know:Re, a math program for middle and high schools students, that uses adaptive technology to collect student data in real-time. This gamified platform helps you address student weaknesses while engaging them at the same time.

As students “play” the math games, they earn coins and stars, motivating them to keep playing, and therefore continue learning. As a teacher, you can also see class, student, lesson and problem data, allowing you to differentiate your lessons and work for students who need more help.

Duolingo

If your students are learning a new language, this website is a must-have. Not only is it free, but your students will be motivated by earning points for correct answers and racing against the clock to level up. They’re motivated to work harder as they gain and lose hearts and watch their streak count go up and down as well.

As a teacher, you can be sure that every student is engaged, thanks to lessons that include reading, speaking and listening, as well as in-lesson grading.

These days it’s easy to create a gamified learning experience for your students. The key is making sure the tool you used is based in education, helping to improve learning, rather than simply distracting. These five edtech tools are the former, and would be a great addition to any classroom.

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Jessica Sanders
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About Jessica Sanders

Jessica Sanders is the Director of Social Outreach for Learn2Earn, a San Diego-based education organization that offers Read-A-Thon fundraisers and reading motivation tools for teachers and schools. She grew up reading books like The Giver and Holes, and is passionate about making reading as exciting for young kids today as it has always been for her. Follow Learn2Earn on Twitter and Facebook, and check out their new ebook, How to Bring Technology Into the Classroom on Amazon.com.

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