Monday, February 1, 2016

We Have a Prodigy Among Us!

We Have a Prodigy Among Us!

Third graders have been enjoying math practice just as much as they enjoy playing video games, thanks to the online math program “Prodigy”. “Prodigy” is an online program that incorporates Common Core math into a role-playing game. It hasn’t taken long for third graders to get addicted to playing this game, not even realizing they are practicing important math concepts at the same time!

The game allows students to create their own avatar, even deciding if they would like this tiny creature to have the same eye, hair, and even skin color as themselves.  Then they decide on a user name, such as “BrianRiverCrafter” or “McKensieSoftprism”. Identifying with their avatar helps the player become more involved in the game.

Correctly answering the math questions allows students to “level-up” and become more powerful. I am so impressed and amazed with how intrigued my students have become with this game. I am even hearing pleas such as, “Please let us play Prodigy! I’m almost past this current level!” They have even asked to skip outdoor recess to stay inside and play this game! It’s not everyday students are begging to practice their math skills! I even have some students planning “play dates” to get online with each other at home so they can play in an interactive format!
Students can be placed at an appropriate level by the game itself with an early diagnostic testing feature, or the teacher can assign topics to be practiced. I have decided to have students practice skills we are currently working on in class, as well as ones we have already been working on for some time as  a review. As they play, the difficulty will increase or decrease according to their answers.

There is also a reporting feature that allows the teacher to view questions and answers for each player. This feature is an excellent tool for me to use when I am trying to either assess a student’s understanding of a concept or trying to decide if I need to reteach or challenge specific students.
While we have only been using this free program for a few weeks, it has definitely been a huge success in my class! Thank you prodigy for bringing excitement to our math class!

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