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The Gamification of Education

We often speak with parents on the topic of computer games, and electronic games in general. With the proliferation of touch devices, it\’s natural that children would be drawn to games as a source of entertainment. Most parents agree that limiting time is essential, but so is limiting the types of activities.
Speaking of our own family, children are allowed to earn iPad time in about 10 different ways around events like showing specific initiative, character development and contribution to family life in general. Mommy hands out tickets in 5-10 minute increments that can be cashed in once per day, as long as it\’s after school work is completed and before bedtime. In addition, there\’s only one screen of apps they can run, and those are centered around education.
I wanted to share the three apps that have been most used and helpful to prepare kids for a good foundation in various aspects of education.

Starfall ABCs: Children delight as they see, hear and interact with letters and sounds in words, sentences and games.
Perfect for kids age 2-4 and teaches them the alphabet while having loads of fun.
Cost: $2.99

Kodable: Kids learn how to become coders in a visual and interactive way.
Our kids started as young as age 4 and even kids 8-10 love it.
Cost: FREE (in-app purchase options of additional levels)

DragonBox+: Learn difficult math and solve algebra equations after just one hour of playing.
This one may take a few tries before they get the hang of it, but then they\’ll be teaching themselves algebra and it just might become a new favourite subject!
So the gamification of education might be a good thing after all. TEDster Sugata Mitra recently gave a fascinating talk on education and specifically the aspect of self-learning. If more learning could be made fun, imagine our educational future! What a great time to be alive!

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