Computer scientist's app makes kids want to learn algebra
- Computer scientist Zoran Popović created the Norwegian game app DragonBox Adaptive, which uses animal-faced cards, followed by numbers and computational signs, to introduce kids to algebra.
- In the game, kids attempt to eliminate all unnecessary cards using simple rules, such as "color cards cancel black-and-white ones" to teach negative numbers. Kids are introduced to more difficult concepts as they progress.
- DragonBox Adaptive is currently being tested as the basis of a complete sixth-grade math curriculum in Seattle, with Brooklyn and Brazil set for next year, and a Washington state experiment also showed 93% of K-12 students mastering concepts after 90 minutes of use.
Popović's app is reportedly so addictive, that kids also don't want to stop using it—meaning they learn even more. In a way, it only makes sense that a guy whose popular Foldit online game had non-scientists developing complex proteins that might lead to new drugs or materials would come up with something to make kids actually want to learn math.
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