Engaging students in learning can potentially improve achievement, but increasing student engagement is still an elusive concept in many classrooms. Armed with research findings and classroom practices, we'll provide you with new strategies and ideas to use in your classrooms.
Purpose & objective
Research tells us that engaging students in learning has the potential to improve achievement; teachers know that instinctively. But how to increase student engagement is still often an elusive concept in many classrooms. Promising new developments in the use of digital content, and specifically digital and online educational games, in elementary and middle school classrooms aim to make that connection between student engagement and empowered learning more explicit. In this session, Julie Evans, CEO of Project Tomorrow, will explore and discuss findings from a white paper that highlights Speak Up research findings around teacher and student use of digital content and games for learning, and how administrators are increasingly supporting those efforts. Joining Julie is Robert Miller, 5th grade teacher from Port Orange, Florida, who will share examples of how digital content and games are transforming his classroom today, and Tim Lauer, Principal at Meriweather Lewis Elementary School in Portland, Oregon who will discuss the critical role of school administration in supporting digital learning. Also, joining the panel, is a team member from BrainPOP, who will review how games are influencing classroom practice via the BrainPOP GameUp portal. With a combination of research findings, content partners, and classroom/school practices, this session will provide you with new strategies and ideas to use in your classrooms this year!
• Participants will learn about current research on the role of digital content and games within learning
• Participants will gain new ideas and strategies as to how to implement digital content and games successfully within classroom instruction
• Participants will learn about the increasingly important role of school site administration in supporting digital content adoptions
• Participants will learn about new free resources available through GameUP
• Introduction/Welcome: 5 minutes
• Exploration of the use of games by session attendees: 5 minutes
• Review of key SpeakUp survey report findings: 15 minutes
• Connecting the Dots - How do the research findings compare with the attendees’ use of games to teach? - 5 minutes
• Moderated discussion–20 minutes (Question examples include):
o The data shows that many teachers and administrators point to games as a tool for motivating learning, engaging kids through higher order thinking skills, creativity, and collaboration among other things. Discussion of a favorite “flavor” of learning game and how it has been integrated into a unit of study or instruction.
o The SpeakUp Data explores how teachers and administrators vet digital content and games? What does classroom practice look like for this vetting process?
o The data shows that digital games can be an entry point for teachers exploring the use of technology within instruction. How do teachers react to that finding? Where do digital content and games fit into one teacher’s personal journey with technology? Is classroom experience a factor in the discussion?
o What are the types of questions posed through the SpeakUp survey? Historically, what types/quantity of questions have been posed related to digital content and games specifically, and has the trend in your questions changed in the last few years? Moving forward, will these questions evolve - type and quantity? Are there any longitudinal patterns?
o Let’s explore some challenges related to game- based learning both in the data and in classroom practice.
• Audience Q&A: 10 minutes
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