Looking for a unique way to engage students in math? Encourage your students to enter this year’s K-12 Game-a-thon challenge.
In this national challenge, students will design, build, and share a game that features creative and unusual solutions to mathematical problems. Game-a-thon helps students explore math outside of the traditional classroom environment and allows for a whole lot of fun!
Whether this is your kids’ first or fourth time entering the competition, make sure to explore the K-12 Game-a-thon website. It gives a step-by-step explanation on how to enter, contains example videos, and provides other great resources. Before you get started though, check out the answers to some frequently asked questions below.
K-12 Game-a-thon FAQs
I want to participate in Game-a-thon! How do I do that?
There are three steps to participating:
Design and build a unique math game
Film and upload a video of your math game
Submit the online application to complete your entry
Who can participate in the K-12 Game-a-thon?
All students in grades K-12 in the United States are welcome and encouraged to participate. Students will also need a “coach” to participate. This coach can be a teacher, parent, or other adult over the age of 18.
What does a Game-a-thon coach do?
A Game-a-thon coach serves as a mentor and resource to student teams or individuals entering Game-a-thon. Also, coaches upload the students’ video recording to YouTubeTM, assist them in collecting their media release forms, and complete the online application for them.
Do I have to be a current or past ST Math user to participate?
Absolutely not! Game-a-thon is open to any and all K-12 students.
Do I need to enter Game-a-thon as part of a team, or can I enter individually?
Either! You’ll need a coach whether you’re part of a team or entering as an individual. If you’re participating as a team, make sure the grade levels of all team members fall within one of these ranges:
Pre-K through 2nd grade
3rd through 5th grade
6th through 8th grade
9th through 12th grade
Can I be a member of more than one team or enter as an individual and as part of a team?
Can my team or I enter more than one game this year?
No, each team or individual may only submit one entry. Make sure to play-test and improve your game so it's the best it can be!
Does my game have to be a board game?
Nope! It can be a board game. It can also be a card, computer, outdoor, or other type of game. Anything goes so long as it features a mathematical concept and can be explained and demonstrated in your video.
How will my game be judged?
A team of educators, mathematicians and game designers (including JiJi), will review and evaluate all submissions. Games will be evaluated based on the following: use of math themes (40%), creative game design/ material use (30%), originality (20%), and video presentation (10%).
When’s the last possible day to submit my Game-a-thon entry?
July 16, 2018! It might be a good idea to give yourself a bit more time, in case you encounter any trouble uploading your video to YouTubeTM or submitting your application.
What if I have a question that you didn’t answer above?
Hungry Alligators, featured in the 2016 Hall of Fame, allows players to explore expressions and equations while slipping and sliding toward an "alligator pond." It was created by second grader, Alana, of Pinellas County Schools.
This year's K-12 Game-a-thon is sure to bring lots of creativity and fun! What will your students come up with?
YouTube™ is a registered trademark of Google, Inc. and not affiliated with this challenge.
About the Author
Kelsey Skaggs is the Communications Manager at MIND Research Institute. She enjoys highlighting the work of colleagues and partners who champion MIND's mission.