West Virginia pilots math video games

The Blue Ribbon Mathematics Partnership Committee in West Virginia has selected seven middle and high schools to participate in a nine-month pilot program using educational video math games.

The schools selected to participate in the pilot are: University and Monongalia High Schools in Monongalia County; Liberty High School in Harrison County; Paden City High School in Wetzel County and Frankfort Middle and Keyser Primary Schools in Mineral County.

Dr. Laura Pyzdrowski, associate professor at West Virginia University and Coordinator of the Blue Ribbon Mathematics Partnership Committee, said its aim was to promote understanding of math theory and practice, and to help West Virginia students compete on a global scale.

“We are excited to observe how our students and teachers will embrace this supplemental game-based technology and anticipate an impact on motivation, engagement, and student achievement,” Dr. Pyzdrowski added.

Pyzdrowski and the Blue Ribbon Mathematics Partnership Committee first learned of the game-based teaching tool through The Center for the Advancement of STEM Education (CASE) which has embraced the math video games as a new building block in the center’s drive to ignite students’ interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) learning.

The 1,000 students of the pilot program will be using DimensionM™ educational video math games, which help students learn multifaceted mathematical concepts within three-dimensional, lesson-based environments.Teachers begin with interactive instructional modules, and Web-based lessons provide an overview of the skills and learning objectives that are part of the supplemental ‘missions’ or lessons to follow.

Students can challenge themselves in single-player format or face other students from another classroom, or from a school across the country, in tournament-style play. All of the gaming programs correlate to both National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) and state standards, including West Virginia.