How Gamifying Education is Keeping Students Engaged –

June 14, 2021– The future of learning may lie in gamifying education, according to panelists at an international symposium last week.

Edna Martinson is the co-founder of Boddle Learning, which provides an interactive and individualized gaming platform that allows teachers to take action from insights on student progress with real-time data.

Martinson noted at a symposium on June 8 that the difference is in Boddle’s move away from the traditional one-size-fits-all model that is leaving children and communities behind on education. When Boddle received a grant from AT&T in early 2020, it saw a subsequent surge in growth during the pandemic.

But that formula relies on technology that isn’t always accessible, panelists said.

The Covid-19 pandemic has proved that technology and broadband are crucial to continuing education. A large learning gap was created because areas of the country don’t have or have unreliable access to broadband.

Addi Mavengere, CEO of the Learning Factory, noted that 75 percent of students in Africa do not have access to technology, and 53 percent of mainland Africa lives in rural areas.

A study, commissioned by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, found that nearly 50 percent of 470 dropouts surveyed, list boredom as the main reason they left. Programs such as Boddle are combatting this problem with innovative technology to keep students engaged, Martinson said, adding avatar-creation is one-way Boddle is maintaining student attention.

Another educational platform, Freckle, ran into this problem when 9-year old Maya and her teacher reached out to the company because Maya said there were no hairstyle options for black girls. The company quickly corrected this problem.

“You need to make sure that all students feel welcomed,” Maya’s teacher said, “and it seems like something small, but if children are using a program and it’s mandatory to use that program, they should be able to see themselves represented.”