Tag Archives: K-12


Medical Mysteries on the Web

This web-based game from Rice University was submitted by Lynn Lauterbach. The game is available at medmyst.rice.edu.

Subject Area and Learning Outcomes
Life Science Middle Level: Pathogens, Immune System, Disease, Bacteria, Viruses, Protozoan, Zoonotic Diseases, Scientific Method, STEM careers

(1-2 players) MedMyst Original has five different mission options. It is generally geared for teaching about infectious disease, pathogens, and the immune response. Mission 1 is an orientation or general introduction, Mission 2 is based on a bacterial disease, cholera, Mission 3 is a viral disease in the pox family, Mission 4 is a protozoan disease dealing with malaria. Mission 5 is a combination of things and is built around zoonotic (animal borne) illnesses. MedMyst Reloaded has STEM career connections and scientific method modeling. Games are built in to the program as reinforcement and review of content.

There are teacher materials, vocabulary, and activites included.

Rules of Play
Self-guided. Winning is not the object as much as completion.

Sample Turn
The student is engaged in the text through a story line that is set in the future. They move through the program solving, learning, and reviewing materials dealing with Life Science concepts.

How this game works in class
I prefer to have students work individually although they can work in pairs. I like to put headphones on the students so the background music and other noises are what they hear. They work through at their own pace. I sometimes have them show accountability with some of the items under the teacher materials pages.

Post-Game Discussion/Assessment
The teacher materials pages have activities and assessments included. The vocabulary pages guide students learning new words and their meanings.

UW-Madison partnership creates educational game development tools

Studies highlight the benefits of playing educational video games, but a new partnership seeks to understand whether the act of designing video games boosts students’ computational thinking and science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) skills.

Collaborating with Microsoft and the Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) Foundation, education researchers at the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, located at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, have created the curriculum and tools to make the video game design program Microsoft Kodu — a computer language that lets children create and program their own games — more accessible in K-12 classrooms.

Called Studio K, the instructional toolkit makes it easier to teach students how to design video games and assess whether the activity affects their abilities to solve problems with computers.

Read more: UW-Madison partnership creates educational game development tools (June 13, 2012).

Computer games ‘improving pupils’ GCSE results’

Pupils with regular access to games based on traditional favourites such as space invaders and penalty shoot-outs significantly improved their scores in GCSE English, maths and science, it was revealed.

Teachers said the use of the system – employed by some 900 primary and secondary schools – promoted “stealth learning”, with children unwittingly picking up key skills while being engrossed in computer games.

via Computer games ‘improving pupils’ GCSE results’ – Telegraph.