Student Player v2 Launched

As part of our grades 3-5 launch, we released a new version of our student game player. This new student player looks the same as the previous version, but offers a much more robust experience, including speedier, more reliable game performance and advanced game playing capabilities, including:

* Text to speech
* Multiple language support
* Translations
* 16:9 aspect ratio (most common aspect ratio for televisions and monitors)

In addition, the first 200 games for grades 3-5 are up on the platform in a beta release. We will be adding more games in March, completing the release.

Over the next few months, Legends of Learning’s development team will work on several new features, such as the ability to choose your own questions for gameplay, quick start playlists, and faster, stronger analytics. In addition, we will continue to improve our user interface based on feedback from teachers using the platform.

Community Is Re-Open for Business

Speaking of technical upgrades, the Legends of Learning Community just went through an expansive rebuild and restoration. When you reengage with the community, you will now be able to like and share posts and better communicate with fellow teachers.

The community is the best place to provide feedback to our developers, earn more coins, and win free swag. Log in (community.legendsoflearning.com) or sign up (https://www.legendsoflearning.com/join-us/)!

Legends of Learning and PhET Interactive Simulations Announce Partnership

This blog is based off a press release issued earlier this morning.

Today, Legends of Learning and University of Colorado Boulder’s PhET Interactive Simulations project announced a partnership that will bring educational games and simulations to middle school science students. Ten interactive simulations for middle school sciences will be hosted on the Legends of Learning platform this month with more to be added in the future.

Combined with Legends of Learning games, teachers now have a comprehensive library of engaging content and interactive exercises for their classroom. Spanning Earth and Space, Life and Physical sciences, Legends of Learning now offers thousands of games, simulations and assessment items for middle school science classes.

“Partnering with PhET Interactive Simulations expands the opportunities we can provide to educators,” said Dr. Vadim Polikov, CEO of Legends of Learning. “With any new school year comes new possibilities. Simulations take Legends of Learning one step further.”

“The partnership with Legends of Learning is a wonderful opportunity to bring our simulations to more teachers and students,” said Dr. Kathy Perkins, director of PhET Interactive Simulations. “We are excited to provide teachers with an easy way to share both educational games and simulations in one place.”

Legends of Learning joining forces with PhET Interactive Simulations, a nonprofit science and math educational project at the University of Colorado Boulder, will provide educators with high-quality simulations that actively engage students in science practices and align with the subjects that educators teach. The simulations will be available on Legends of Learning later this month.

PhET was founded by Nobel Laureate Carl Wieman in 2002 to advance scientific literacy, and today its interactive, research-based simulations are utilized more than 80 million times a year by students and teachers. The simulations are designed to be highly interactive and engaging and to build real-world connections for students. For example, students explore forces, energy and motion as they engage in a tug-of-war, design their own skateboarding track, or shoot pianos out of a cannon.

Announced last week, PhET was awarded the 2017 WISE Award, recognizing and promoting innovative education initiatives around the world, by the World Innovation Summit for Education (WISE), a leading international initiative for innovation and collaboration in education.

“PhET is a fantastic resource,” said Teresa Cobble, an eighth-grade science teacher from Atlanta, Georgia. “After being in the classroom for almost a decade, I still find it difficult to find resources that work together, are appropriate for the content I am covering and are engaging for the students. My students love Legends of Learning and the addition of PhET simulations will give them an even richer experience.”

Earn More Coins: Legends of Learning Community Incentives

Some teachers are asking how they can earn more coins for their game play. One way is to be an active ambassador in our Legends of Learning community (sign up or log-in).

To that end, we are happy to unveil our new incentives for the Legends of Learning Community for the 2017-18 school year. Coins earned through community actions are awarded at the end of each month. Here are the different ways you can earn coins.

In Community

  • First 10 comments and replies during the 2017-8 school year = 100 coins. Another 100 coins for each successive 20 comments.
  • Five original posts = 50 coins. Another 100 coins will be awarded for each successive 10 posts.

Social Sharing

In addition to the coins earned via in-product sharing, you can get more coins by linking to us in the following ways:

  • Blog post about us, or an inbound link via a badge from a website you control: 500 coins
  • Facebook share about Legends that tags our page on Facebook: 100 coins

Lesson Plans

We love lesson plans that include Legends of Learning games. Send us your lesson plan formatted like this, and once accepted (we peer review all student facing content), you will receive 100 coins. Send lesson plan submissions to aaron@legendsoflearning.com.

Special Missions

Game ratings: Legends of Learning is currently looking to have students rate specific games. For every game that you your class plays and rates, you will earn 60 coins. For a class of 30, that equates to two new games for playing one! If you are interested, email faye@legendsoflearning.com for a game assignment.

Teacher-Recommended Enhancements for New School Year

We are happy to announce new upgrades and enhancements to our game-based learning platform with significant improvements for the new school year. New features like schedule ahead, student information system (SIS) integration and significant increases in analytic capability focus on ease of use for teachers, stronger performance data and analytics, and increased teacher playlist functionality.

When Legends of Learning launched this past spring, we committed to creating a platform that responds to educators needs. The platform now offers thousands of games and assessment items for earth and space, life and physical science classes. The changes and updates were based on feedback and requests from Legends of Learning ambassadors and teachers.

“We set out to create a platform that is built for teachers by teachers,” said Vadim Polikov, CEO of Legends of Learning. “We have an incredible community of Legends of Learning ambassadors and educators who have shared their thoughts and feedback in order to help meet their needs. From individual game feedback to district-wide features, Legends of Learning is better for it.”

Teacher Reactions to Legends of Learning Evolutions

Enhancements to Legends of Learning’s platform are based on actual teacher usage and feedback. Teachers offer feedback through the Legends of Learning Ambassador community (sign up here) and directly through the product. Teachers have responded well to the new updates.

“I was so pleased when I found Legends of Learning,” said Bailey Johnson-Hastings, science teacher at Hastings Middle School (NE). “My students love using it in the classroom to reinforce the concepts I am teaching. I appreciate how receptive and responsive Legends of Learning has always been with any feedback I have submitted. They are truly committed to creating a student-and-teacher–oriented gaming platform. It is so great to see Legends of Learning engaging with the educator community in this way.”

“I applaud Legends of Learning for their openness and interest in hearing from teachers,” said Bonnie Hohenshilt, science teacher at Dwight D. Eisenhower Middle School (NJ). “The new features reflect things I was thinking would be great to have: the ability to begin your session where you last left off, a searchable playlist and the teacher’s top 10 list are great!”

Here is a list of some of the latest features:

Teacher Accounts

  • Ability to add student rosters in the platform
  • Enhanced playlist history, including ability to easily relaunch playlists and see student performance history and content mastery by concept
  • Real-time student data on assessments using “Question Data” button on the playlist tab
  • Multiple sessions per learning objective
  • Content skipping: Move individual students to the next game or assessment if they are struggling
  • Streamlined playlist launcher
  • Dedicated teacher code: Codes are assigned to teacher instead of randomly generated
  • New games and assessment questions
  • Improved games with changes ranging from minor to major based on teacher feedback
  • Live playlist shortcut: Switch quickly between active sessions

School and District Accounts

  • Unlimited usage
  • Scheduling feature: Ability to schedule playlists to launch in advance, which can be used for homework, weekend work and substitute teachers
  • Curriculum alignment to Georgia (GSE) and Texas (TEKS) standards
  • Rostering
  • SIS integration
  • School and district dashboards for administrators to view usage, performance and teacher and student analytics in real time

Try the Games

In addition to the new features, several bugs reported by teachers have been fixed. Further, minor technical improvements, features requested by our teacher users and usability improvements have been made.

This blog post is based off a press release issued this morning.

More Than 700 Middle School Science Games Now Available!

We are thrilled to launch our game-based learning platform with more than 700 curriculum-based games for middle school earth and space science, life sciences, and physical science curricula. The science games, created by over 300 games developers, are based on rigorous academic research conducted in partnership with Vanderbilt University.

In preparation for the platform launch, Legends of Learning involved more than 500 teacher ambassadors from across the country. Their participation will ultimately build a library of 700 games by the end of spring, with more games in different subjects and grades underway. The games and platform have benefitted from direct feedback by Legends of Learning’s teacher ambassador community, resulting in games ideally suited for the challenges of today’s learning environments.

Teachers communicated directly with and provided recommendations to game developers from such well-known game studios as Schell Games, Filament Games, North South Studios, Second Avenue Learning, and Intellijoy. Legends of Learning will continue to engage with educators about their needs and insights in an effort to keep games fresh and exciting for students.

“I have been teaching science for 14 years and never have I seen a company listen to teachers and incorporate feedback like Legends of Learning has,” said Scott Beiter, a veteran science teacher from Rensselaer, New York, and Legends of Learning teacher ambassador. “It is hard to find a platform that is easy-to-use and integrates into what I am already teaching, but Legends of Learning has created one for middle school science.”

Legends of Learning founder and CEO Vadim Polikov, a research scientist, believes that research is the foundation for successful game-based learning and long-term educational reform. The soon-to-be-released controlled study in partnership with Vanderbilt University, “Substantial Integration of Typical Educational Games into Extended Curricula,” measured the performance of more than 1,000 students in seven states and in schools with differing student bodies, socioeconomic factors, and geographical locations. The study demonstrated statistically significant success, showing that academic performance and engagement increase with curriculum aligned game-based learning.

Some unique aspects of the Legends of Learning game-based learning platform include:

  • Short games (5-15 minutes) that align to middle school science curriculum standards to ensure content engages and helps students succeed in their studies;
  • An intuitive platform similar to Netflix and Amazon that makes games easy and natural to use in classrooms; and
  • A dashboard that allows teachers to observe student comprehension in real time, create game playlists for classes and individual students, and assess content mastery.

“I firmly believe in using original academic research to test the efficacy of new education products while at the same time making sure the classroom implementation is incredibly easy for educators,” said our CEO Vadim Polikov. “Working with a wide range of teachers and game developers has allowed us to build a unique platform that will be easy for educators to integrate and use in their classrooms.”

Teachers interested in being part of the Legends of Learning Ambassador program should visit legendsoflearning.com/teachers. We are showcasing our platform and games at booth #2217 at the National Science Teachers Association’s National Conference in Los Angeles, March 30-April 2.

A version of this story was issued as a press release on PRWeb this morning. Interested parties can see the games on the Legends of Learning platform.

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