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Less is More: Teaching Rational Number Addition Using Video Games with Minimal Instruction
PROCEEDINGS

, CRESST / UCLA, United States

Global TIME, in Online, Publisher: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE)

Abstract

Understanding the meaning of rational numbers and how to perform mathematical operations with those numbers seems to be a perennial problem in the United States. Based on previous work, we hypothesized that giving students more time to practice using rational numbers by enticing them to explore the meaning and apply their understanding of rational numbers and rational number operations might prove educationally beneficial. We developed a video game to investigate this hypothesis and to estimate the effect sizes of different in-game instructional formats. Our findings suggest that students using such a game can increase their ability to add rational numbers even when playing the game for a relatively short period of time. Somewhat counter-intuitively, we found that minimizing in-game instruction and feedback seems most beneficial to learning. Since the effect size of one intervention is moderate, we discuss future studies designed to spread game play over several class periods.

Citation

Vendlinski, T. (2012). Less is More: Teaching Rational Number Addition Using Video Games with Minimal Instruction. In Proceedings of Global TIME -Online Conference on Technology, Innovation, Media & Education (pp. 154-158). Online,: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved April 2, 2020 from .

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