Tag Archives: game

Medical Mysteries on the Web

This web-based game from Rice University was submitted by Lynn Lauterbach. The game is available at medmyst.rice.edu.

Subject Area and Learning Outcomes
Life Science Middle Level: Pathogens, Immune System, Disease, Bacteria, Viruses, Protozoan, Zoonotic Diseases, Scientific Method, STEM careers

(1-2 players) MedMyst Original has five different mission options. It is generally geared for teaching about infectious disease, pathogens, and the immune response. Mission 1 is an orientation or general introduction, Mission 2 is based on a bacterial disease, cholera, Mission 3 is a viral disease in the pox family, Mission 4 is a protozoan disease dealing with malaria. Mission 5 is a combination of things and is built around zoonotic (animal borne) illnesses. MedMyst Reloaded has STEM career connections and scientific method modeling. Games are built in to the program as reinforcement and review of content.

There are teacher materials, vocabulary, and activites included.

Rules of Play
Self-guided. Winning is not the object as much as completion.

Sample Turn
The student is engaged in the text through a story line that is set in the future. They move through the program solving, learning, and reviewing materials dealing with Life Science concepts.

How this game works in class
I prefer to have students work individually although they can work in pairs. I like to put headphones on the students so the background music and other noises are what they hear. They work through at their own pace. I sometimes have them show accountability with some of the items under the teacher materials pages.

Post-Game Discussion/Assessment
The teacher materials pages have activities and assessments included. The vocabulary pages guide students learning new words and their meanings.

Interested in adding games to your classroom teaching?

In case all the ideas on this website aren’t enough, I just found a great blog that gives you a steady stream of cool classroom ideas, mostly for elementary school, but I already see a couple I can modify to use in my community college classroom. The author is Mike Perry, and he taught high school math, but many of the games will work with any subject. http://classroomgamesandtech.blogspot.com/

For example, here’s a game called “This or that” that would work well as an ice breaker in any class at the start of the year: http://www.prometheanplanet.com/en-us/Resources/Item/92529/this-or-that-game

Japanese Ladder Games for Combinatorics

Three fascinating games from Steven T. Dougherty and Jennifer Franko Vasquez at The University of Scranton appear as “Ladder Games” in MAA Focus, June-July 2011. Mathematicians will enjoy the group theory and combinatorics used to explain the way the games work, while their students will have fun with these games as an intuitive introduction to the concepts.

The authors write that the three games, “…can be played by anyone regardless of their level of mathematical sophistication. When you are done playing these highly addictive games you will have a deeper understanding of permutations and group actions and you will learn a very interesting connection to coding theory. We have found that the games are very enjoyable to play and that players end up understanding complex mathematical ideas without realizing they have done so.”