Holly Pope, Wuzzit? Digital Math Games in Elementary Classrooms. Tens of thousands of digital math games can be found through iTunes and Google Play, however, the quality of these games vary. Some of these games leverage the technology of digital games to engage the player. Others treat the math as an add-on feature. Furthermore, most of these games focus on increasing student speed with math facts instead of mathematical thinking and problem solving. Similarly, not much research has focused on digital game-based learning beyond speed and basic math facts. In this talk, I will discuss the results of a pilot study in which third graders who played the digital math game Wuzzit Trouble showed increased mathematical thinking compared to those who did not play the game. I will also present one framework for evaluating digital games for children, which could also be used as a tool for parents and game designers. Finally, we will explore implications and future research with digital games in classrooms.
Holly Pope has 18 years of teaching experience from prekindergarten through 6th grade, including 5 years as a math instructional coach in a K-8 urban charter school. She is a Doctoral Candidate in Curriculum Studies and Teacher Education, focusing on Mathematics Education. Her current research interests include the development of student mathematical thinking from playing a digital mobile game. Other research interests include educational technology, pre-service and in-service teacher education, differentiation practices, curriculum use and development, implementation of the Common Core State Standards, and issues of equity in urban elementary mathematics contexts. Holly has a B.S. in Elementary Education from Geneva College and a M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from Gannon University.
Interactive media and games increasingly pervade and shape our society. In addition to their dominant roles in entertainment, videogames play growing roles in education, arts, science and health. This seminar series brings together a diverse set of experts to provide interdisciplinary perspectives on these media regarding their history, technologies, scholarly research, industry, artistic value and potential future. As the speakers and title suggest, the series also provides a topical lens for the diverse aspects of our lives.