Supporting multiple learning styles through game-based learning

learning styles blog image

 

With back-to-school season well underway, many teachers are embarking on the task of ensuring that every student in their care reaches their academic potential. As we now know, the “one-size-fits-all” teaching method can be ineffective and can quickly lead to student disengagement. So how can teachers design their lessons to ensure they are meeting the individual needs of each and every student in their classroom? A starting point is to familiarise themselves with how their students learn best through intentional observations and honest conversations. This may take some time and dedication on the teacher’s part, but it will be well worth it in the end!

There are many tools that teachers can use in the classroom to help them differentiate their lessons to suit their students’ individual learning styles. One such tool is educational technology. With a myriad of ed tech games in the market, teachers may wonder what is the best one for their students. While there is not a simple, straightforward answer to this, teachers need to take into consideration a variety of factors such as the age and experiences of their students and the desired outcome of the lesson. For example, if an elementary teacher is looking for an app to help her 1st graders gain fundamental skills in numeracy and literacy, Skoolbo would be an excellent choice for her class since it focuses on these skills for children from preK-6th grade.

Although admittedly, there is not total agreement in the education sector about the validity of Visual, Auditory, Kinesthetic (VAK) theory, it is widely accepted that variety in teaching methods and styles go a long way toward keeping students engaged and learning. Incorporating this variety into lessons will not only ensure all types of learners are catered to but will also encourage individuals to engage with learning in different ways.

Below we look at the three major learning styles of VAK theory and examine how ed tech games, such as Skoolbo can support each style.

Visual Learners
These types of learners need to see the lesson that is being taught. So, for instance, if they are given instructions, they are better able to follow these instructions if the instructions are written on a white board rather than being told to them. Ed tech games, such as Skoolbo, really play to this learning style with their visually stimulating characters and backgrounds. Also, games like Skoolbo have students answer questions that are displayed right on the screen, which is very beneficial for visual learners.

Auditory Learners
Similar to visual learners, auditory learners also use one of their senses to learn. For them, they need to hear what is being taught. Auditory learners learn best through oral teaching methods, such as talking through a topic or singing a song. Skoolbo and many other ed tech games are great for these types of learners because they can hear the questions being spoken out loud, and they get verbal reinforcements throughout the game.

Kinesthetic Learners
Kinesthetic learners like to put their learning into action. They often use their hands to “talk” and to touch things around them, and they also enjoy moving around. One of the features that is included in Skoolbo, Zippy Shake is fantastic for these types of learners because it gets them movin’ and groovin’.

 

Game-based learning has the capability of scaffolding the learning process for all of these types of learners since they focus on multiple learning styles. Such games also help make a teacher’s life much easier as teachers will not need to rely on many different types of ed tech tools to help each of their students. And above all, students enjoy playing games, so engaging them in games that are both fun and educational at the same time is attacking two birds with one stone!

Codie blog footer CTA (1)

 

Whale Hill Primary School – ClassBo Champions!

Whale hill

A new school year is beginning full of excitement and new opportunities. We hope everyone has enjoyed the summer and is looking forward to the term ahead.

One Skoolbo school ended last year on a high and we’d like to share their success with you. We’re sure that these great students will inspire others to follow their wonderful example.

John Frost is the Computing Leader for Whale Hill and has been busy motivating students to improve their maths, literacy and language skills by rolling out Skoolbo across the school. The teachers are also brilliant at sharing students’ successes across social media which has helped to tell their Skoolbo story as it unfolds.

Year 4 were the first to appear on Twitter, demonstrating just how engaged they are with their learning on the platform –

Year 4 Skoolbo

Each year group had been set a Mega ClassBo Challenge to answer 25,000 maths and literacy questions over a two week period and Year 4 took an early lead –

Whale Hill Twitter 2

The regular Twitter updates revealed some very close competition and Year 2 were also early ClassBo stars –

Whale Hill Twitter

By the end of term all this effort had paid off and not just in terms of the amazing learning progress, Whale Hill Primary School had shot straight to the top of the leaderboard –

Whale Hill leaderboard

And it wasn’t just Whale Hill students who were winners as a result of participating in these ClassBos, WaterAid UK will benefit from every ClassBo successfully completed last term (more to follow).

As you can see from the fabulous comments below, the children are adept at reflecting on their learning and have come up with some great suggestions for developing Skoolbo in the future. We’ll certainly take these ideas on board so thank you!

What do you enjoy most about Skoolbo?

You get to play games and learn at the same time. (Y1)

It looks really good on the iPad. It doesn’t feel like learning but you are. (Y2)

The games are short so you can play for a long time or a short amount of time if you want. (Y4)

Where do you play Skoolbo most? at home, at school, in the car?

Almost half of children in Y2 and Y4 had used it at home including downloading the app. Y3 and Y5 was more than a quarter. All have had the opportunity to use it in school a number of times (Mr Frost)

How has the ClassBo challenge made learning more exciting?

It tells you how many points you have so you want to get more and be better. (Y2)

When the teacher shows us the points you can see your own score and you want to get the most so you play more. (Y3)

You get to see how close you are getting to the target and you only have 2 weeks which makes it feel like a competition. (Y5)

Do you talk to your friends about Skoolbo/ClassBo?

The children have said that they often talk about it with each other in school. More than half in Y4 and Y5 said they had talked about Skoolbo, even if it was to compare points (Mr Frost)

We are always looking for new and exciting things to add to Skoolbo. Do you have any suggestions for us? new lands, new languages, new rewards, new vehicles?

Rockets in space, underwater (on a shark’s back) and on the moon!

How do you feel when you master a new game?

I feel really proud. (Y1)

It makes me want to keep going and do even better. (Y2)

I feel more confident. (Y3)

It makes me feel like I’m good and getting better at maths and English. (Y4)

I want to master more topics and improve further. (Y5)

And here are some comments from the teachers –

It has been wonderful to see the level of enthusiasm for Skoolbo that children across the school have. We thought they would like it but they don’t. They love it.

I have seen children who lack confidence in Maths and English lessons fist-pump the air with pride as they achieve a personal-best score. Children who will easily disengage in lessons have tentatively asked when we will next be able to use Skoolbo in school. Quiet and timid children have flourished with the healthy competition that the year group leaderboard provides.

Furthermore, the opportunity to set targets as a ClassBo challenge has appealed to the children. It has provided them with a specific aim and given an explicit purpose for using Skoolbo as well as enjoyment and learning. The Water Aid focus and the resources provided have helped us as teachers to make cross-curricular links from Geography to Science to PSHCE.

On the last day of the year, the children were allowed to bring in their own toys and games to play. Within an hour, Y4 were asking if they could play on Skoolbo. That they would choose it over free time with their friends and their own toys says more than I could put into words.

Whale Hill Primary School – you are amazing!

Whale Hill map final

Whale Hill Primary School is based in Eston, Middlesborough. Here are their aims and expectations –

At Whale Hill we value all of our pupils equally, respecting their individuality and seeking to develop their fullest potential.

Our aim is:

  • To nurture happy, lively and well-balanced children with active and enquiring minds.
  • To develop childrens knowledge and enhance their skills.
  • To foster tolerance, respect for others and increase childrens awareness of moral and spiritual values.
  • To help children to become active participants and responsible citizens, able to live their lives as completely as they are equipped to live.

Our expectations of children are always high. We want them to work hard, enjoy school life, behave appropriately and take responsibility within the school.

“Continuous Improvement towards the very best imaginable”

Top 5 reasons why learning with Skoolbo is FUN

Your child will no doubt be excited about what the new school year will bring. However, moving into a new class can also be overwhelming for children and very tiring for parents. But the fun needn’t stop just because the holidays are over.

Skoolbo provides the perfect way for your child to relax while improving their maths, literacy, and language skills.

How do we know this?

Children have been telling us in their hundreds. We’ve gathered together the fantastic feedback we’ve received from children, including the top 5 reasons for why they love Skoolbo.

It doesn’t feel like learning but you are“. 6 years old.
The games are short so you can play for a long or short time if you want”. 9 years old.
It makes me feel like I’m good and getting better at maths and English“. 10 years old.

Learning_fun_skoolbo_zippy_shine

zippy-shine You can also download Zippy Shine for 50% off on iTunes or the Google Play Store:

 Available_on_the_App_Store_(black)  

Follow Skoolbo UK on Social Media: Facebook and Twitter. Please share it if you find it interesting! Zippy Shine is developed by Skoolbo.