Browsing All Posts published on »June, 2012«

Puzzles And Working Memory

June 21, 2012

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I have a theory that puzzles are essentially practice for the working memory skills we need in order to perform more complicated activities. That’s a mouthful, but what I mean is that in order to perform a complex task, like writing a book or solving a complicated math problem, we need to be able to […]

Time-Based Motivation

June 20, 2012

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I was just playing around with Motion Math, working on a review for The Puzzle School and I came across one of their games where if you don’t answer fast enough then a pin pops your bubble and you have to start over. I’ve never been a big fan of this type of motivation. It’s […]

Rethinking Failure

June 19, 2012

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The concept of failure is very present in modern day education. We use the threat of failure as both a means of motivating, so that you don’t fail, and of filtering, preventing those students who did fail from moving forward. This concept of failure is only part of the picture in the real world, though. […]

Trial and Error = Flow

June 17, 2012

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At The Puzzle School we’re essentially trying to teach through trial and error. Which means we aim to create environments (puzzles) where you can solve challenges through trial and error. This means that the environment is simplified, making it easier to come up with hypothesis to “try” and where there is feedback that makes it […]

Reviewing Educational Websites/Apps

June 15, 2012

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I’ve started to review some educational websites and apps over at The Puzzle School: http://puzzleschool.com/puzzles The reviews are focused on websites and apps that fit the model of learning I’m trying to promote through The Puzzle School. Namely one that focuses on the intrinsic motivators of challenge, progress through consistent feedback, and a clear goal. […]

Not All Students Are The Same

June 15, 2012

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I’ve never loved the statement, “not all students are the same”. It’s generally used to combat overly generalized processes that end up serving all students ineffectively. It’s also used to encourage viewing students as the individuals that they are with distinct talents and passions, rather than blank-faced cogs in an educational machine. As much as […]

Why Puzzles and not Games

June 14, 2012

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Gamification is a common buzzword in education these days and for good reason. At it’s heart gamification is very powerful. It strives to make education more enjoyable, mimicking the dedication people see in young and old people toward video games. I would much rather people think more about puzzles, though. There are a number of […]