Sproglit Educational Games – Match Fun With Key Standards
Each generation processes information somewhat differently from their parents. These variations stem from a combination of cultural changes and technological advancements. Teaching methods should evolve to compensate this. Thanks to neural plasticity, the brain can physically change the way it encodes and accesses information. Therefore, some methods that were effective once may no longer wholly be adequate. Many researchers have reported a shorter attention span among young people today, driven perhaps by the ease with which information can be accessed. Our teaching tools must reckon with this change. Educational games such as Sproglit’s, using the innovative Math Arrow, help children even with short attention spans, develop number sense.
Many teachers admit to feeling great pressure to “teach for for the test,” whether the tests are mandated by governments or their school. Sproglit edu games such as Kyle Counts essentially do double duty: they prepare kids for tests by teaching arithmetic skills, but they simultaneously develop stronger, more elaborate neural pathways for better long-term retention and to convey number sense.
Brain Function and Math Arrow Edu Games
The strength of a neural network can be quantitatively measured by the number of synapses between neurons and qualitatively explored by considering the amount of rehearsal, or practice, needed to learn a particular concept of topic. The designers of Math Arrow games understand that the school calendar is crowded, not allowing much time for extensive rehearsal and practice. Therefore, the games are designed to be as efficient as possible, as demonstrated by the rapid improvement in math scores of Utah students who took part in a controlled study administered by BYU researchers. The efficiency stems from the simultaneous stimulation of different parts of the brain in response to the same stimulus. The Math Arrow game Kyle Counts, for example, stimulates the auditory cortex by playing the auditory pronunciation of the number-base that Kyle hops onto (Teachers can change the language settings to simultaneously incorporate a Spanish lesson into a math class). Math Arrow games also stimulate the visual cortex because visual patterns are woven in throughout the game such as odd numbers being designated as triangles (or pentagons for those divisible by five). Math Arrow games also incorporate spatial relationships into their design, so that in each horizontal row, the numbers add up to 100.
While these various neural processes may seem unrelated, they are all connected in the brains of young sprogs. The more connections that are present, the better developed the neural network becomes and the better children subconsciously understand relationships between numbers. The key is in preserving and developing number sense so that the math skills acquired in grade school can be applied in future classes and in life. Without a deep understanding of the relationships between numbers, the concepts learned in school are useless because they are just the answers to one test. Sproglit games are an excellent addition to any teacher’s classroom, and the neuroscience-foundation of the Math Arrow makes every lesson that much more effective.
Math Arrow: Kyle Counts Game Efficacy Study
A randomized, controlled experiment was conducted in five 1st grade classrooms to determine whether Kyle Counts, an addition and counting game designed by Sproglit, LLC for the iPad, improves performance on grade-appropriate tests of addition and number sense. Please see key findings below:
- Students in the first tested group played Kyle Counts for ten minutes a day for five days. After playing Kyle Counts for a total of 50 minutes, their mean scores on an arithmetic test rose by 0.887 points, equivalent to a 7.58% improvement and an increase of 27% of the standard deviation.
- Students in the second tested group played Kyle Counts for 2 to 5 days. Their scores improved by .676 points, equivalent to a 5.77% improvement and an increase of 21% of the standard deviation.
- Students who scored above the mean in a pretest, increased their scores by a greater degree, equivalent to an improvement of 8 to 11 percent.
- The test scores cited above suggest that children playing Kyle Counts improve their knowledge of addition and number sense and that even a small increase in playing time is associated with higher scores.
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