Mathematics is a subject that every person comes across throughout their life. In either school, university or in their profession; almost everyone uses math in some form on a daily basis. This makes it even more important to gain a good understanding of the subject.
To learn math a student has to learn problem solving, which can be further used for general problem solving skills. There is however a general dislike towards math itself and many people seem to either dislike learning it or easily forget math that has been taught to them. Skemp notes in his book that “not only do we fail to teach children mathematics, but we teach many of them to dislike it.”(Skemp, p.3). This means that an initial “fun” learning experience and also a repeated learning session for refreshing knowledge of mathematics is crucial when wanting to dive deeper into problem solution which could be done with online browsing games.
Gamification can be easier used for low level math, like children that are just getting familiar with the topic, or someone who is refreshing their memory. For higher level math it is suggested to attend a course or join an online community Topics related to for example precalculus are being taught by websites like KhanAcademy or Purple Math.
When learning math, it is important to always practice applying the theoretical concepts learned, it does not matter what level of math it is. In order to practice theories learned a game can help to apply these theories in a engaging way. Games like Quizlets “Meteor Shower” can help to help with quickly applying problem solving skills.
Overall, it is important to distinguish between learning a mathematical theory and learning how it works in application. Online browsing games are able to help a self-learner work on the latter of the two. Games can also take away some of the bad reputation math has and might help students to open up towards understanding math on a deeper level.
Skemp, R. (1987). The Psychology of Learning Mathematics. New York: Routledge.