Posts Tagged games

How Big Are Your Brainz?


This year students throughout Lamar Consolidated ISD have access to Big Brainz, an OUTSTANDING online math-fact fluency building game. The brand new version of this game includes all 4 operations – and a reporting system for teachers to check student progress. It’s a fun, highly-motivational way for students to work on learning their math facts, and is even available for students to download and use at home!  Using this game for 30 minutes per week – for about 8 weeks – has been reported to dramatically improve student recall and fluency of basic math facts.


Logging In

Students:  Your Student ID is  Your Password  Both at School and at Home.

After Big Brainz has been installed, Lamar CISD Students should select their State (Texas,) district (Lamar CISD,) and campus before entering their Student Id Number as their password.  Once logged in, students should select the name of their home room teacher and get ready to PLAY!

Teachers: Don’t know your password?  Contact your Math Facilitator or CITS.

To view detailed reports on how each of your students is progressing, simply click the reports button below.  (Hint:  You might want to save this website as a favorite!) Enter your State (Texas,) district (Lamar CISD,) and campus name.  Finally, enter your password.

Remember – perfect practice makes perfect!  Students won’t see much progress until they have logged in and played the game on a regular basis, so it’s important to make Big Brainz a part of your daily routine.  All students are encouraged to download and play Big Brainz at home.  The more they play, the more they learn!  Happy Gaming!

Want to see more of the BigBrainz program? Check out the video below!

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Powerful Practice Instead of Painful Practice

There are basic skills that form a foundation in each of the core subject areas.  Students who cannot quickly recall basic math facts struggle with daily mathematical problem solving.  A child who doesn’t have his sight words memorized struggles with reading fluently.  Poor spelling can cause a student to have trouble writing.  You get the idea.  These foundational skills must be mastered if we are going to help students build the complex concepts that they need.  We know we need to provide opportunities for students to practice these basic skills but it takes time and traditional practicing methods are often boring.  Adding a dose of technology into your skill drill-and-kill can grab a student’s attention and keep them interested long enough that they just might remember the facts.

Here are three ideas to make skill review more fun:

1. Raps on iPods

Catchy tunes and rhythm can often aid in the memory process, so it only makes sense to pair our reviews with music!  Examples can be found all over the internet and here is a fantastic example found on TeacherTube:

You can then take the songs and videos and load them onto iPods for students to review anywhere!

2. Video Flash Cards

Power Point slides saved as jpeg files can make great video flash cards to practice math facts, sight words, or vocabulary.  Load the slides into Photostory or Movie Maker.  Have students record the answer, pronunciation, or definition.  Flash cards can be viewed at the computer or loaded onto an iPod for portability.

3. Websites

There are a number of great websites that provide opportunities for students to practice basic skills.  Many of the websites mimic traditional methods of practice (i.e. flashcards), but they add color or animation to grab your attention or make things interesting.  Other web sites hone in on students competitive nature by presenting the skill review in the form of a game where students can earn points for correct answers or speed.  I’ll include a few of my favorites.


Math:   Spelling: Vocabulary:

Repetition of basic skills and information is important, but it doesn’t have to be dreadful.  Take some time to add a little technology into your rote practice of skills and I guarantee you will grab students’ attention and keep it!

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