Gamification tools that increase student engagement

Gamification offers many benefits for teachers and students alike--here's how to integrate these tools into your instruction

Who out there doesn’t enjoy some form of game? Whether it be watching or playing a sport, a card game, a board game, or video games, most people would say they at least enjoy one.

Games are part of many people’s lives–so why not use them to benefit students when teaching?

From a 5th grade teacher lens, it is evident that students are more likely to engage in an educational activity when it is “gamified,” and even more so when it is gamified with technology.

There are a variety of reading and math apps and websites that cater to gamification, and even provide the opportunity for differentiation.

Let’s start off with reading apps and websites. Learning A-Z’s Raz Kids, Dreamscapes, and Prodigy English are all free websites/apps that cater to gamification as they encourage practicing reading skills. IXL language arts also
incorporates gamification, but it is a paid subscription (free 30-day trial).

Learning A-Z provides a variety of genre books at different levels. One of its
features is that the books have an audio feature–books are read out loud while the system highlights the word being read, which can help build students’ fluency skills.

Another feature is that the book offers a 10-question comprehensive quiz at the end, which can help indicate if the student grasped the story’s vocabulary and content. The gamification aspect comes in when students receive stars for reading the book, listening to the book, and taking the quiz. The reader then uses the stars to add more additions to their robot user.

eSchool Media Contributors