How I Gamified

How @howellywood and her teammate gamified their classes.


Before I describe how I gamified my classroom, let me make sure you understand my definition of gamification. #levelupED, the Twitter chat and blog I co-moderate with Dayson Pasion, defines gamification as using game element or mechanics in traditionally non-gaming environments. Gamificaiton is not playing Scrabble or review Jeopardy but turning your classroom into a game. You can gamify anything from a small unit to your entire classroom. I am lucky enough to teach on a two-person team with Heather Newberry who shares my vision and we’ve gamified our entire team! Below, you will find the details about how our game runs including everything we created to play it. Please take it, make it your own, and then join us at #levelupED on Thursdays at 9pm EST to share your experience.

Our entire game is based on the novel Divergent by Veronica Roth. Our students have…

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Extrinsic Motivation is Not The Enemy!

From @howellywood, her thoughts about student motivation:


Motivation. The why behind your actions. The driving force behind who you become. As teachers, we tirelessly search for ways to motivate our students to succeed, not just in the classroom, but in life. These tricks we use are extrinsic motivators, but that’s becoming a bit of a bad word in education. Many teachers argue that extrinsic motivation has a negative effect on students. They say that too many extrinsic motivators lead to students losing intrinsic motivation and only being willing to do work for a cookie.

People, especially teachers, are incredibly passionate about motivation. I’ve seen fiery arguments, both on the digital stage and in person, regarding the evils or wonders of rewards and extrinsic motivations. Teachers take the concept of rewards to heart as a teacher’s opinion regarding this concept affects every aspect of how they run their classrooms.

I’ll be honest here. I’d never given this most…

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Featured blog from @TriSciCurious

Last week in our #levelupED chat, Jessica Anderson (@TriSciCurious) posted her blog entry about student epic wins and their experience with fiero. I just want to repost here (w/ her permission of course) so that you can enjoy as well. 

So what’s so fun about this? It’s really seeing the joy of accomplishment on my students’ faces when their eggs survive, and hearing their plans of action when their eggs crack and scramble. The thing is science is a work in progress and not everything is always going to go perfectly. Students, especially my honors students,  need to see and experience this. 

Click on the link for more: Teaching, it’s all about the sidelines: Lesson from an egg