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Keyboard Climber

What it is: Keyboarding is a necessary evil in the computer classroom.  I say this because truly mastering touch typing takes practice, a lot of it.  However, I don’t want to spend all my class time in the computer lab teaching kids to type.  There is SO much more that our brand new iMacs can do.  To use them as typewriters feels ridiculous.  Combine that with my 35 minutes once a week with students and keyboarding really becomes a necessary evil.  In my classroom, I focus on typing practice very little.  I encourage my students to practice keyboarding at home with fun online typing games.  Keyboard Climber is one of these games.  It is a fun little game that helps students build those touch typing skills in or out of the classroom.  In Keyboard Climber, the goal is to help a monkey climb up a tree and score bananas by typing letters.  If the student types the incorrect letter, a coconut falls on the monkey’s head and he falls down to a lower level.  There is fun music and sound effects that accompany the game, kids love it, I find it a bit too monotonous.  The only other thing that I don’t love about the game is that all of the letters are displayed as capital letters.  However, students never have to actually type a capital letter (with shift or caps lock). How to integrate Keyboard Climber into the classroom: Keyboard Climber is a fun little game to help students practice typing.  Use it in the computer classroom as a short warm up and see how many points students can accumulate in a set amount of time.  Hopefully this number will increase throughout the year.  Encourage students to play Keyboard Climber at home to practice typing.  I have students take a screen shot of their highest level and points to post on one of my bulletin boards. Tips: I learned about Keyboard Climber from @techfacil, thanks for the tip Julie! Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Keyboard Climber in your classroom.

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Dragon Box: a game for students to learn algebra…secretly

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Apply, Download, Evaluate, Interactive Whiteboard, iPod, Math, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Software | Posted on 22-04-2013

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      Dragon Box

 

What it is: Dragon Box has got to be the most brilliant game for teaching a new concept I have seen in a LONG time.  I am SO impressed with this app, I can’t say enough about it!  This is a math game that teaches algebra without you really realizing that it is a math game teaching you algebra.  It feels more like a logic card game than anything else.  There are 200 puzzles that secretly teach kids to solve equations.  They unlock each level by figuring out how to balance an equation (you have to isolate the dragon on one side of the board in order for him to emerge). After each level, he grows a little until he is full-grown.  Students learn concepts such as elimination, fractions and isolating variables throughout the game.  This is the best math app I’ve seen. It is NOT a drill/skill type app. It is actually teaching students to think like mathematicians instead of just asking them to solve a bunch of problems.

How to integrate Dragon Box+ into the classroom: I cannot say enough about this app.  The way that it gets kids thinking is completely fantastic.  Students learn algebra and how to think like mathematicians without even realizing it.  The game gives minimal direction, and invites students to explore and try new things to isolate the dragon.  The best way to use this app in this classroom: just let students start playing with it!  I love that this app could be played by students as young as six years old successfully, but also used by high school students where they would get those “aha” moments of understanding how algebra works that they may have missed along the way.

Put your students in teams, or let them explore Dragon Box independently.  Dragon Box allows for multiple logins, so you could even use it as a classroom center rotation.

Because you can download Dragon Box on multiple device types, you could even use this on a classroom computer connected to an interactive whiteboard or a projector and take turns playing as a class.  There are plenty of levels for every child to participate multiple times.

Price: $5.99

Devices: Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4s, iPhone 5, iPod Touch (3rd-5th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS4.0 or later

Tips:  Dragon Box is also available on the Mac App Store, Google Play, PC shop, Amazon Appstore for Android, and Windows Store.  Even if you don’t have iDevices, your students can play with Dragon Box!

I’ve been nominated for a Bammy Award for Educational Blogger.  I’d appreciate your vote to help spread the word about iLearn Technology.  Vote here.  Thank you for your continued support!!

Leave a comment and tell us how you are using  Dragon Box in your classroom.

Comments (4)

[…] Dragon Box is an app recently blogged about by iLearn Technology. The video above explains the app. Essentially it is an app that teaches students algebra with them barely knowing it…that’s the best kind of learning, right? There are a variety of levels that build upon prior knowledge.  The concepts learned in this game are extremely valuable for students in their math knowledge development. […]

[…] Dragon box […]

thanks for nice post. If you are interested, dragon box 12+ out, with signs, parenthesis, factoring etc… in an unconventional but efficient way.

[…] Box is an app that I discovered through iLearn Technology. This app allows students to play a game that teaches them algebra…without them realize that […]

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