CGS on the Go!

cgsIt’s spring, which means we’re taking time away from our computers (briefly) to head to various events around the region!

Catch CGS developers at the following events:

April 22: Bennett Elementary Science Night (Bellevue) – come talk to us about Foldit, Nanocrafter, Center for Game Science projects, and most importantly our upcoming K-12 Story Problem Challenge starting April 27.

April 24 and 25: We’re so excited to be participating in Engineering Discovery Days, so look for us in the CSE building atrium. Stop by both days and grab an “I love Algebra” sticker, play our games, and ask us all the questions on your mind about blending together quality gaming and academics.

May 9: A few brave developers and Foldit team members are headed north to the Shoreline STEM festival.

We can’t wait to meet all of you!

Can Washington Schools Solve Over 250,000 Story Problems In One Week?


For immediate release:

The Center for Game Science at the University of Washington is pleased to invite all K-12 classrooms around Washington state to participate in this year’s “K-12 Story Problem Challenge”, a story-problem-based Algebra Challenge. During the week of April 27 – May 1, participating K-12 classrooms will be challenged to solve over 250,000 story problems collectively by playing new math learning game Riddle Books, which teaches Common Core-aligned pre-algebra concepts via story problems in a friendly game-based environment. All grades and all levels are invited to participate – the challenge is designed to enable any learner to solve story problems at their grade level and beyond. In the K-12 Story Problem Challenge, “If you can read it, you can solve it!” Signups are currently available for classrooms by visiting our site.

Participation is completely free, and the game will work on any recent web browser. Any class with access to a PC, Mac, or Chromebook can join the challenge.

Riddle Books, created by the Center for Game Science at the University of Washington, presents story problems with fun fantasy-based themes. It aims to develop learners’ understanding of Common Core concepts with a focus on developing conceptual understanding through visual models. It uses story problems to gradually introduce the player to the notion of equations. The game starts off with the player manipulating pictures and dealing with relationships they can intuitively understand and enables students to solve story problems regardless of their skill level. The challenge will also feature an innovative, free Teacher Copilot that allows teachers to view real-time student gameplay data and helps to remove key misconceptions at the group and individual level.

“Young students have a great time puzzling through these modeling story problems and turning them into equations,” said Mike Taylor, Center for Game Science Curriculum Development Specialist. “Plus, the unique stories keep them coming back for more.”

The K-12 Story Problem Challenge provides an opportunity to use the state-of-the-art tools from the Center for Game Science, featuring immediate feedback, differentiated learning paths, and active involvement through experiential and discovery learning. The Center for Game Science at the University of Washington is a leader in research-based adaptive learning through games.

Dragon Architect Released

CGSWebSiteDragonArchitectTwo of our graduate students, Aaron Bauer and Eric Butler have created a fun new program called Dragon Architect. Claiming they have found a dragon that only speaks code, they developed Dragon Architect for ages nine and up to let youngsters help this peculiar creature construct wondrous things in a fun 3D building game. Through the use of Dragon Architect, students learn basic programming concepts to solve puzzles and build 3D structures out of cubes. Give it a try today!

WA Algebra Challenge On the Way

toonannounceWe’re on our way! Today the Center for Game Science is pleased to announce the dates of our newest Algebra Challenge for Washington state:

April 27th – May 1st, 2015!

Featuring our program Riddle Books (previously only available through visits to the Center, as well as our Summer Learning efforts with Seattle Public Libraries and KCLS in 2014), we look forward to starting a brand new chapter in our Algebra Challenge tale with Washington students! We’ll be rolling out full details and signups in the next few weeks on our Challenge site, but we wanted to invite you to share the word with us!