If you are looking for new teaching strategies that will boost student motivation, participation and achievement, look no further than Gamification. Basically, gamification can be described as applying game-like concepts or mechanics to ordinary tasks in order to boost an individual's desire and motivation to complete these tasks.
There are many ways that gamification strategies can be incorporated into your daily instruction. For example, instead of providing students with a set list of assignments to be completed, why not provide a variety of assignments that students can choose from and complete. Then add points (XP) that can be earned for each assignment completed and call those assignments missions or challenges. Doesn't that sound more interesting and fun? Add a little more excitement by creating a leaderboard and your competitive students will immediately jump to the challenge. But don't stop there...instead of assigning traditional grades use the XP (experience points) as your new grading system. Total up the number of possible XP that a student can achieve and that would be equivalent to receiving an A. Although I am only touching the surface in my brief summary of this amazing concept, hopefully I have peaked your interest enough that you will check out all the resources I have provided below.
I-Spy Language Arts Challenge
One fun way to gamify instruction is to create learning challenges in an interactive Thinglink image. Below I took an image I found on Pixabay and created several language arts challenges for my 2nd graders. Hover over the image below to check it out.