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Game Design as an Interactive Learning Environment for Fostering Students' and Teachers' Mathematical Inquiry

Game Design as an Interactive Learning Environment for Fostering Students' and Teachers'... Many learning environments, computer-based or not, have been developed for either students or teachers alone to engage them in mathematical inquiry. While some headway has been made in both directions, few efforts have concentrated on creating learning environments that bring both teachers and students together in their teaching and learning. In the following paper, we propose game design as such a learning environment for students and teachers to build on and challenge their existing understandings of mathematics, engage in relevant and meaningful learning contexts, and develop connections among their mathematical ideas and their real world contexts. To examine the potential of this approach, we conducted and analyzed two studies: Study I focused on a team of four elementary school students designing games to teach fractions to younger students, Study II focused on teams of pre-service teachers engaged in the same task. We analyzed the various games designed by the different teams to understand how teachers and students conceptualize the task of creating virtual game learning environment for others, in which ways they integrate their understanding of fractions and develop notions about students' thinking in fractions, and how conceptual design tools can provide a common platform to develop meaningful fraction contexts. In our analysis, we found that most teachers and students, when left to their own devices, create instructional games to teach fractions that incorporate little of their knowledge. We found that when we provided teachers and students with conceptual design tools such as game screens and design directives that facilitated an integration of content and game context, the games as well as teachers' and students' thinking increased in their sophistication. In the discussion, we elaborate on how the design activities helped to integrate rarely used informal knowledge of students and teachers, how the conceptual design tools improved the instructional design process, and how students and teachers benefit in their mathematical inquiry from each others' perspectives. In the outlook, we discuss features for computational design learning environments. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png "Technology, Knowledge and Learning" Springer Journals

Game Design as an Interactive Learning Environment for Fostering Students' and Teachers' Mathematical Inquiry

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Publisher
Springer Journals
Copyright
Copyright © 1998 by Kluwer Academic Publishers
Subject
Education; Learning and Instruction; Mathematics Education; Educational Technology; Science Education; Creativity and Arts Education
ISSN
2211-1662
eISSN
1573-1766
DOI
10.1023/A:1009777905226
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Many learning environments, computer-based or not, have been developed for either students or teachers alone to engage them in mathematical inquiry. While some headway has been made in both directions, few efforts have concentrated on creating learning environments that bring both teachers and students together in their teaching and learning. In the following paper, we propose game design as such a learning environment for students and teachers to build on and challenge their existing understandings of mathematics, engage in relevant and meaningful learning contexts, and develop connections among their mathematical ideas and their real world contexts. To examine the potential of this approach, we conducted and analyzed two studies: Study I focused on a team of four elementary school students designing games to teach fractions to younger students, Study II focused on teams of pre-service teachers engaged in the same task. We analyzed the various games designed by the different teams to understand how teachers and students conceptualize the task of creating virtual game learning environment for others, in which ways they integrate their understanding of fractions and develop notions about students' thinking in fractions, and how conceptual design tools can provide a common platform to develop meaningful fraction contexts. In our analysis, we found that most teachers and students, when left to their own devices, create instructional games to teach fractions that incorporate little of their knowledge. We found that when we provided teachers and students with conceptual design tools such as game screens and design directives that facilitated an integration of content and game context, the games as well as teachers' and students' thinking increased in their sophistication. In the discussion, we elaborate on how the design activities helped to integrate rarely used informal knowledge of students and teachers, how the conceptual design tools improved the instructional design process, and how students and teachers benefit in their mathematical inquiry from each others' perspectives. In the outlook, we discuss features for computational design learning environments.

Journal

"Technology, Knowledge and Learning"Springer Journals

Published: Oct 5, 2004

References