Stands apart from other educational games!
This is the reading resource to give to your students who are already avid gamers! On the day I introduced Dreamscape to my students, I expected to walk them through the tutorial all together as a class. However, I quickly realized it was not necessary for me to provide a walkthrough on my projector screen. So many of my students had played real-time strategy games in the past that they began to recognize similarities between Dreamscape and those actual games they played for leisure. For my students who rarely engage in video games or mobile games, they sat down in small groups with the serious gamers to have peer support as they got started.
Once my students realized they could battle one another, the competition got fierce and my class became invested. Students were playing longer than required at home-- students were even bringing their Chromebooks to the cafeteria at lunchtime to sneak in some more playtime! A few students who were not typically gamers got hooked in this way, eager to beat some of the top players in the class, have the longest streak of correct answers, or gain status on the leaderboard. Students who do not play games in their free time might be overwhelmed at first by the options to build, battle, and engage in academic content, but they recognized the value of the app and stuck with it. They reported the content was rigorous, so it was worth learning the game-- the content was often more challenging than paper-based resources they were receiving from their other teachers or even other apps they had used for practice.
Most importantly for me, I think, though, is the graphics. The concept art is well-designed. So often when I try to find online resources for middle schoolers, I fear the art or the site's layout may appear too juvenile and may discourage my students from wanting to use the product. The artwork here is comparable to games they would pay to play in their free time, and by no means looks like it's only for elementary students.
How I Use It
I used this game with my advanced eighth-grade students prior to our standardized test administration as test prep. I wanted students to experience the various phrases, buzz words, and question stems that might be used on the standardized assessment.