Room to Discover Blog

Stories and strategies for creative, collaborative, and conceptual classrooms. Subscribe to receive new posts each week via e-mail.

Students Using Khan Academy on iPads
Personalized Learning

Data-Driven Math Instruction: A Gradual Approach

In a previous post, I described my first steps toward creating a gamified math class using Khan Academy. I didn’t set out with gamification as a goal. At first, I was mostly interested in Data-Driven Instruction. Introducing Khan Academy helped me to assign different work to different students and assess their progress, while reducing the time

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group of students huddled around tablet
Curriculum Development

Gamification vs Game-Based Learning – Does it Make a Difference?

Gamifying my 5th grade math course has been one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences of my teaching career. After introducing gamification, I am finding a number of benefits for both myself and my students. Though the term “gamification” is new, games have been a part of learning since humans first began learning. When deciding

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screen capture from space invaders
Teaching Strategies

How You Play the Game

Taking the first step to gamified learning can seem overwhelming, especially if you are the type of teacher who likes to create everything from scratch. There are a number of apps and online platforms that already exist as gamified learning environments and others that are not designed as games but lend themselves well to gamification.

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graphic that reads: "a student's dilemma"
Assessment

Gaming the System

It’s hard to attend an education conference, especially an EdTech conference, these days without hearing about Gamified Learning. As with any buzzword, it can be hard to tell the difference between a bandwagon worth hopping on and empty hype. It can be equally hard to pin down a definition, let alone best practices, for a

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Flexible seating in classroom
Lesson Planning

Differentiation through Flexible Grouping

While it may seem paradoxical for students to work at their own pace and meet content standards, students can learn so much more effectively when work is targeted at their level. Leveled groups are most successful when students are grouped accurately and teachers facilitate effectively.

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smiling teacher
Student-Centered Learning

Just in Time Data

When we deliver information to our classes via lecture, we often wonder how much they are ‘picking up what we’re putting down.’ When the assessment comes days or weeks later, it can be hard to tell whether a student’s difficulties come from attention, comprehension, or retention.

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group of students huddled around tablet
Assessment

First Steps to Data-Driven Instruction

The gap between what we “teach” students and what they “learn” should be familiar to any classroom teacher. Good assessment shows us what students understand and retain; the importance of data can not be discounted.

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