Following Up - Evaluation Strategies

Evaluation Strategies

To effective teachers, evaluation is a continual process of gathering and examining evidence, analyzing it, and reflecting on ways to go forward in light of what they have learned.

Collecting evidence

You can generate reports using the Administrator Tool that cover a wide range of information: time spent playing the game, time spent playing the puzzles, number of messages submitted, puzzle attempts, puzzle completions, tokens earned, pets freed, last login, number of logins, time played, etc. You should remember, though, that this evidence is an artifact of game play, not a grade to be assigned. By looking at the picture these reports create, you can get a good idea of some areas where the student might need more direct instruction.

You can create a more complete picture of student progress by also considering:

  • Your students' graphic organizers. If your students used them, these graphic organizers can again give you insights into your kids' thinking and their problem-solving while playing Lure of the Labyrinth.
  • Your informal observations of your students' puzzle play. Any time that you were actually able to watch your students play Lure of the Labyrinth will be invaluable to you in understanding how they worked with the math in the game.
  • Your students' feedback. What better way to find out about your students' experience than by asking them? Ask them whether they think Lure of the Labyrinth helped them improve their math skills. Ask them about what they could and couldn't figure out in the game. Ask them about the strategies they used. Ask them what they learned by playing Lure of the Labyrinth. Ask them ... well, you get the idea!

Reflecting on the story the evidence tells

Once you have the data, of course, you'll want to make some sense of it. And here we think it will be helpful to remind you of two of the main purposes of Lure of the Labyrinth:

  • To help prepare your students to learn your pre-algebra curriculum.
  • To give you information that can help inform your teaching of that pre-algebra curriculum.

These data won't be the basis for any kind of final assessment of your students. Its ultimate use will be to give you an idea of what your students know, what they still need to learn and, maybe most importantly, how they think. Try to focus on how you can use the collected evidence to help your students succeed in their real race - learning in your classroom when you formally teach them the math content. We believe that, in this way, the data will be an extremely useful resource for you.