Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Interactive Websites For Summer Practice

Hi Everyone,

I am fresh from a wonderful Vegas resort vacation with the grandchildren and am enjoying the quiet that a two adult "empty nest" household can provide.

I know many of you are "winding down" and either want some fun activities for computer time or may want to recommend some websites for summertime practice for the students. A few of them have crossed my desktop in the last two days that I thought were very good, not hard for the kids to use, and had a minimum of advertising or distracting banners.

The first one comes from the Ministry of Education in New Zealand and is called Crack the Code http://www.tki.org.nz:80/r/wick_ed/maths/interactives_code.php There are three levels of difficulty. Students add numbers with the sum indicating a letter that is placed in the space. Eventually a message will be revealed. After solving the puzzle (therefore doing the math correctly) the student is rewarded with the opportunity to play an "arcade type" of game.

At first glance Arcademic Skill Builders looked to me to be a "busy looking" website that would be hard for a student to navigate. But as I chose one of the games, and saw it in isolation from the others, I really liked it. Arcademic Skill Builders are found at http://www.arcademicskillbuilders.com/ There are four multi player games. The student chooses a name (they can use the number/letters provided) and then they compete against unknown players. There is no information provided on any player. I enjoyed racing against three others. There are also nine single player games - math and grammar.

Most people enjoy playing Tetris. Have you ever tried it with a map? This game had me a little frustrated, but once I got going, I got better at it. Instead of positioning the typical Tetris blocks, you position states/countries at their proper location. Find MapMSG.com at http://www.mapmsg.com/games/statetris/

I hope the next few days/weeks are not too tiring for you and that you have at least allowed yourself a little time to dream about the upcoming summer.

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