Using Games in the Classroom

Gamequarium.com is a website full of educational opportunities. Whether you home school your children, teach in a school, or are the parent of a traditional student, the games at Gamequarium will benefit your children’s learning experience. The newest layout of the site categorizes games by age level as well as subject content. This gives you the ability to choose the appropriate games for the task at hand.

For the purpose of this article, let’s look only at the top row of options on the homepage. The categories are: Science GLES.

Gamequarium Grades 3-6:

Games in this category are organized by content. For example, you will find a page of math games, one with music content, and another full of brain teasers. While the title says Grades 3-6, there is also a link for younger users; however, the content there is also under the “junior” category. The games and activities here are suited to enhance the learning experience, not replace the teacher. You can use game time as a reward, or a goal. Either way, you the teacher must instruct the student before expecting him/her to be able to play the games.

Junior Pre K-2:

This page is all about the wee ones. There are links to Dora, Dr. Seuss, Little Bear and Curious George games and activities; as well as 123s and ABCs. The idea for these links is to have fun with your early learner, encourage them to keep trying, give a lot of praise, and make learning look and feel like fun. Some of the games and activities are simple enough that the child could play on his own, or with minimal help.

Readquarium:

Readquarium is loaded with pre-literacy and literacy games and activities. You will find read aloud books, comprehension practice, printable eBooks, and more. Most of these games and activities are geared to the youngest audience (perhaps 4-7); however, there are activities for older students as well. The older activities would work well as motivators to get those students reading.

Gamequarium Math:

There are hundreds of Math games and activities here, from early number fluency to complex operations. Some of the links bring you to videos that will explain how to solve problems, while others are aimed at having fun while learning. You could use the links to instruction videos to introduce new concepts, or reinforce concepts already taught. Then invite your student(s) to play the games that correlate with the lessons learned. You may want to keep track of scores and progress so your students can work to improve, and “beat their scores”.

Science GLES:

GLES stands for grade level expectations; therefore, this page is organized into grade level competencies. Categories within the grade levels range from earth science to life science. Activities vary in length and depth. There are also a few activities that will reinforce or introduce new concepts, but the majority of the science activities will help students build fluency and mastery of content related concepts.

For more ideas and in-depth know-how, visit the Teacher Clicks page.  You will find links to teacher portals, tools, lesson planning, and more. Most of all, remember that adding games to your curriculum is not intended to replace teaching or learning activities. It is meant to encourage students to learn, improve their skills, and take a break from the memorizing and reciting.