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Case study // Designing Maths Games (Austria)

This case study story relates the experience of a Austrian teacher engaged in the cycle 3 of pilots (Sept-Dec 2012). It gives an overview on what happenned in the classroom and on the impact of these activities as analysed by the teachers and the students.

Background

  • Age of students: 8th grade (13-14 years) (who produced games for 9-10 year olds)
  • Number in class: 12 students
  • The subject: ICT/Computer studies      
  • Aims/Objectives:  To design a maths game for primary school students and to program the game using Scratch
  • Over what period of time: 16 lessons over 2 months
  • Location of lessons? In the classroom, in the computer lab and outside the school outside normal school hours

Teachers and students experiences: What happened ? 

The teacher divided the class of 12 students into groups of three. Each group was tasked with developing a maths games for primary school students, using the programming language Scratch. The end result of the process was to be a number of maths games for third grade students at the local primary school.
A key aspect of the activity was creating something which has an actual use outside the school.  In this task, the students faced a technical challenge in developing their programming skills, as well as a pedagogical and design one, namely, ensuring the games they created were suitable, in terms of interest, topics and ability levels, for primary school students (Read more in the full case study).
 

Key innovations: What was new or different overall ?

  • Student attitudes: According to the teacher, the class is normally quite loud and sometimes the students are not as motivated and concentrated as they should be, but the introduction of the iTEC learning story led to a noticeable change in their attitudes.  The teacher believes that this is partly because they needed to create something real.
  • Role of the teacher: The changed pedagogical setting is something the teacher has to become familiar with, especially the notion of allowing students the freedom to explore and develop their own individual approach. “You just need to let them do the things and trust them. You are going to be surprised what they come up with.” 

                                             Read the full case study