For Families - About Learning Games

About Learning Games

Everybody with kids has seen "that look." You know the one. The child is completely and overwhelmingly engaged in the thing before them. It can happen during any number of activities. But the truth is that for many kids, "that look" is at its very most intense ... when they're playing digital games.

Digital games (and other digital media) exert an incredibly strong pull on today's children. They capture kids' imaginations in a way that almost nothing else can. In fact, the power of digital games is so strong that many adults regard them as something they have to limit - as in, "Turn off the computer and come to dinner NOW!"

But consider this for a moment. What if there was a way to harness the amazing power of these digital games ... and use it for the forces of good?

We think that there is. And that's why we made Lure of the Labyrinth for your kids.

 We know that today's families come in many shapes and sizes, so we use the word 'kids' in this article to include all the children you care for in your life 

As you well know, digital games are everywhere in our culture. But until recently, these games were almost always designed solely for entertainment. It turns out now, though, that many researchers believe there's something special about digital games (and the mechanics of digital game play) that makes them great not only for entertainment, but for teaching and learning, too. They believe that well-designed digital games can bring together the engaging power of gameplay (the part that gives kids "that look" ...) with meaningful content that can actually help people in their lives. That's why we now see the military, private industry and a slew of educational institutions using digital games in the same ways that they also use textbooks, videos and PowerPoint presentations ... as a teaching tool.

Lure of the Labyrinth has been designed specifically to help teach pre-algebra to middle-school students, and it has a rock-solid educational foundation since it's built around the CCSS and National (NCTM) standards. Teachers will use the game as part of their pre-algebra curriculum and assign students to play Lure of the Labyrinth both in the classroom and wherever else they have Internet access (it's a web-based game). We feel that it presents an opportunity for your children to improve their analytical and problem-solving skills and even, we think, make them think more like mathematicians. You'll like Lure of the Labyrinth for all of those reasons. And your kids will like it because it's exciting, challenging and fun to play.

So what's the upshot of all this?

Well, maybe "that look" can be a good thing ... and if your kids are playing Lure of the Labyrinth, we hope you'll let them have another few minutes on the computer before dinnertime.