Unit 3: Use Video Games in the Math Classrooom


Arrowbullet.pngClick here to return to Unit 2: Identify Video Games in the Math Classroom


Purplearrowbullet.gifLearning Objectives

Unit 3 Overall Objectives:

· Using five considerations for educators when using video games (Turkey, Hoffman, Kinzer, Chantes, & Vicari, 2014, p. 15), the participant will be able to assess video games used for math instruction.

· The participant will create a classroom activity incorporating a video game by using the information learned in the course.

Bluearrowbullet.gifYour Task

Your principal has decided that it would be beneficial to create a math course that includes video games. The course will be offered to students that are at-risk for being non-proficient on the end of the year state exam. The course must also address 21st century learning skills. The last step in the process is to present a video game assessment and classroom activity to the school board. The course is dependent on the school board’s approval so that appropriate funding will be provided. If the school board approves, you will have the opportunity to teach this new and innovative course!

Greenarrowbullet.gifLearning Activities

Tip: The links will redirect you from this website. I suggest right clicking and opening the links in a new tab.

Arrowbullet.pngBefore you create an activity incorporating a video game, the following readings will help you to assess video games.

Simkins (2014) explains the three parts of video games that should be assessed before use in education.

Read pages 265-269 of Chapter 14 in Learning, Education and Games: Volume one

Turkay, Hoffman, Kinzer, Chantes, and Vicari (2014) explain considerations for educators when choosing and using video games. You will be using the questions in Table 1 (Turkay et al., 2014, p. 15) to assess a video game.

Read the following article: Toward Understanding the Potential of Games for Learning: Learning Theory, Game Design Characteristics, and Situating Video Games in Classrooms

Arrowbullet.pngThe first step for creating an activity is to define the instructional goal. Based on the video game that you are considering using for instruction, define an instructional goal that can be accomplished by using the video game.

For example, if you were considering using Alien Hijacking, then your overall instruction goal could be for students to be able to identify, classify, add, subtract, multiply and divide polynomials.

Please download the following document to your computer and fill in your name and instructional goal. Save the document to your computer to use throughout this unit. Here is the link to the file: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B2DHsGC6sUHnWGV4aldiVmR1WmM/view?usp=sharing

Arrowbullet.pngNow that you have an instructional goal, you are going to use Table 1 on page 15 of Toward Understanding the Potential of Games for Learning: Learning Theory, Game Design Characteristics, and Situating Video Games in Classrooms (Turkey et al., 2014) to assess the video game you want to use. Use the table as reference and answer the five questions in your Unit 3 Activity document.

After answering the questions, carefully consider whether the video game you selected is the right match for you. Does the game match your instructional goal, instructional philosophy regarding learning theory, feedback, and learner choice, and instructional context (Turkay et al., 2014, p. 15)? If the answer is no, then you should select a different video game. Although it may be difficult to find a perfect match, you need to be comfortable with the game that you choose.

After you have finalized your video game choice, please update your Unit 3 Activity document with your final assessment.

Arrowbullet.pngIt is time to create your classroom activity. Using your instructional goal and video game, create a classroom activity that you can present to your principal and the school board as an example for the new math course. Update your Unit 3 Activity document with your classroom activity.

When you are complete, go to the discussion page: https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/using-video-games-in-the-math-classroom

Create a New Topic with the subject being your name and video game. For example, my subject would be “Heather Leo Alien Hijacking”. Attach your Unit 3 Activity document to your post.

Arrowbullet.pngThe final step to this course is peer feedback. Please read and respond to at least one other Unit 3 Activity. Please tell your classmate what you liked about their activity and include any suggestions for improvement.


I hope that you have enjoyed this mini-course! I also hope that you continue to use the discussion area to share ideas. Please feel free to post any video game activities to the discussion in the future. I look forward to sharing activities and continuing to learn new ways to use video games in the math classroom!

Arrowbullet.pngClick here to return to Unit 2: Identify Video Games in the Math Classroom

Arrowbullet.pngClick here to return to Using Video Games in the Math Classroom.

Extended Resources

Simkins, D. (2014). Assessing video games for learning. In K. Schrier (Ed.), Learning, education and games (pp. 23-36). Pittsburgh, PA: ETC Press.

Turkay, S., Hoffman, D., Kinzer, C. K., Chantes, P., Vicari, C. (2014). Toward understanding the potential of games for learning: Learning theory, game design characteristics, and situating video games in classrooms. Computers in the Schools, 31, 2-22.