Win Albert’s Insomnia Math Games


Win an Albert’s Insomnia Classroom Kit

Our celebration of Teacher Appreciation Week continues today with a great new friend of the DEN, Albert’s Insomnia. Ten lucky Discovery Educators will win a free Albert’s Insomnia Classroom Kit and a full year of access to the Electronic Resource Program (ERP) for grades K-8 Arithmetic Fun, a formative assessment tool.

albertsinsomnialogoWhat is Albert’s Insomnia?

Albert’s Insomnia is a set of math tools disguised as a game. It uses a real game engine that feels like any other game kids would normally play just for fun.  Field tests show that this results in high engagement levels and extended play. Of course if students are having fun doing math and want to do more of it, then they get better at it. Albert’s Insomnia is a fun way for kids to repeat and practice their math facts to help properly build the foundation needed for a successful math career.

There’s a chance for you to win Alberts Insomnia, but even if you don’t win our friends have a discount code for you. Use the promo code Mathy for 28.5% off your own Albert’s Insomnia Classroom kit.


classkitWin Albert’s Insomnia

In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week, we have teamed up with Albert’s Insomnia  to provide ten Discovery Educators with a free Classroom Kit and a full year of access to the ERP.  Albert’s Insomnia uses fun game-style activities to improve math skills and fluency.

For a chance to win, leave a comment telling us how you are using games/gamification with students. Answer in the comments below by Monday, May 11, and we will randomly choose ten Discovery Educators to receive Albert’s Insomnia. Best of luck!


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  1. Kevin Willson said:

    I use games on a weekly basis to review the concepts being taught during the week. The students always look forward to game day. I set up several review games and have the students rotate through them.

  2. Lyza said:

    There are so many benefits to playing board games. They help children with social interaction, taking turns and learning to follow rules and to win and lose gracefully. Board games also supplement my lesson plans.

    “Any game that requires a student to count and move a game piece at the same time is good for developing one-to-one correspondence while counting,” said Jayne Cooke-Cobern, a kindergarten teacher at Marumsco Hills Elementary School in Woodbridge. She lists Trouble, Chutes and Ladders, Uno, Yahtzee, Racko and Apples to Apples among her favorite games for the classroom.

    “They’re not just paper and pencil for little ones,” said Lisa Barnes, another kindergarten teacher at Marumsco Hills, who uses Memory (recognition of numbers, sight words and color words), bingo (letters, shapes and rhyming words) and dominoes (numbers and the concept of more and less) with her students. “It gets everyone using their hands. They are having fun and learning at the same time.”

    According to the NPD Group, a market research firm based in Port Washington, N.Y., sales of board games through October were up 4 percent over the same period in 2008. Web-connected toys were down 39 percent.

    Toy experts attribute the increase in board game sales to the recession. A board game can cost less than a movie ticket and can be played repeatedly. These games are strong sellers for another reason: the moms and dads who decades later can still name all the properties around a Monopoly board or recall a particularly satisfying triple word score in Scrabble.

    A 2007 study by Carnegie Mellon University showed that in a group of low-income preschoolers, playing a board game with numbers, such as Chutes and Ladders, helped them improve their performance on four kinds of numerical tasks. Those gains were still evident nine weeks later.

    By pushing young children to think strategically and plan ahead, and to attach abstract thoughts to concrete objects, many games can help develop more-sophisticated thinking skills, educators said.

    “One of the primary skills [board games] develop is self-regulation,” said Peter Pizzolongo, director of professional development at the National Association for the Education of Young Children. “You have to be able to wait your turn and think ahead. . . . With many board games, particularly those that involve numerals, you have to learn your numbers. But being able to attach those numbers to something you’re doing requires a higher level of function, and that’s going to happen with board games.”

    Marilyn Fleetwood, president of the Academy of the Child, a Montessori preschool and elementary school in Germantown, says her teachers use games such as Lotto, bingo and Scrabble to improve fine motor skills and vocabulary. They also have turned Candy Land into a gross-motor extravaganza on occasion, with the entire floor serving as the game board and the children acting as markers.

    Fleetwood also uses board games to teach social skills. Unlike reading, writing and math, there are no established rules or tricks for teaching social skills.

    Fleetwood said, “play is probably the most important skill for life. Most children learn to read, but social skills are one of those things that really have to be developed. And that’s what you get with board games.”

    • Games are fun, appealing, and motivating to students of all ages and backgrounds.
    • Games support the curriculum—
    o Word games and matching and memory games foster language development and literacy.
    o Board games improve counting skills and spatial awareness and develop strategic thinking for improving skills in mathematics.
    o All games provide lessons in taking turns, understanding how to win and lose, and fitting in with others for social and emotional development.
    o Games provide a forum for initiative and leadership, reasoning, and problem-solving.
    o Different types of games develop small and large motor skills and hand/eye coordination.
    • Challenging and strategic games help children learn to focus and concentrate, which are essential ingredients in developing creative thought.

  3. Elizabeth Jorgensen said:

    There are so many benefits to playing board games. They help children with social interaction, taking turns and learning to follow rules and to win and lose gracefully. Board games also supplement my lesson plans.

    You know those days where there is an assembly? Or maybe a holiday party? Or it’s the day before break? On these days, I look out at my students, their rustling, their excitement and their energy; and I want them to have this excitement about learning. And I’ve found a way to translate their energy into learning every day of the year: WORD GAMES!

    Currently, my students are obsessed with “You’ve Been Sentenced.” We use this game to learn and practice the parts of speech, to create topic sentences and to develop writing prompts and vocabulary. But not all word games are the same. Some require a plot, others require math; some require strategizing, others require teamwork.

    I have also acquired other word games as well: Word on the Street, Quickword, Starwords, Alphabet Roundabout, Play on Words, Scrabble Upwords, Jumbulaya, Rattled, Flashwordz, Boggle, Buy Word and Word Winks.

    But now that my students have mastered these games, they are requesting new ones! That’s where you come into play! I’m hoping you’ll choose my classroom for this grant so I can add to my game collection.

    Games are engaging, self-directed and adaptable to the level of my students. Games have have a positive impact on my students and their learning and interest level; and that’s why I’m hoping you’ll choose me to receive games for my classroom so I can continue to have my students excited about learning every day of the year!

  4. Teresa Cypert said:

    We use games as a way for students to challenge themselves and utilize the skills. As an example, we use Khan Academy and Discovery Education games (such as Fishy Fractions and Whaddaya Know Game Show) to differentiate skills for various students. In addition, we use math board games that support different math skills (dividing, multiplying, etc.). In order to differentiate these games, we create different packets in which students must answer the question in their packet correctly to move the allotted amount of spaces. Students love the games because they are defining their skills while having fun! In fourth grade we love these games and would easily be able to integrate Albert’s Insomnia into our curriculum to encourage skill growth and differentiation! We’d be honored to use this product in our fourth grade classrooms!

  5. Rachel Farley said:

    Every week students in my class get to play games in groups to review the skills they have been learning all week. Also, I use games to introduce new concepts in a creative format. Students always enjoy playing the games. They don’t realize they are learning; they just know they are having fun. I would love the chance to use Albert’s Insomnia with my students!

  6. Lindsay said:

    I use games to review concepts covered in class. I play Family Feud type games to reinforce vocabulary, Mathletics to reinforce math concepts learned in class. I have been looking for something to help with Math Fluency as this will be a division wide goal next year.

  7. Codi said:

    We love math and we love games…we LOVE math games! We currently use myster math problem solving activities! I have tweaked popular games like uno, connect four, and jenga to make math games! Our current favorite of these is time uno! We just enjoy making math fun!!

  8. JUDY said:

    We enjoy using math games during small group enrichment and intervention times. We currently use fluency building games such as kaboom! We would love to include Albert’s Insomnia Math Games to build our mathematician skills!!

  9. April Moss said:

    I use games to help the necessary concepts stIck.
    Why use a worksheet when you can have interaction and learning at the same time.? Games teach a natural way by involving others with fun activities.

  10. Constance Keeling said:

    We do AMSTI math and science every day in my room. It is interactive, hands-on discovery and problem solving. However it us also fun for the kids and me. They do purposeful, research based games in which many common core skills are targeted. But they just think they are having fun. It makes teaching heavenly, interesting and makes me think about my thinking right along with the children. I have learned so much about the way I teach and understand math. It has been a learning journey for me right along with the kids! I feel my classroom would be more enhanced with Albert’s Insomnia! We hope to get one!! Learning should be fun!!! #amstijsu

  11. Katherine Giroux said:

    We kaboot, quizlet compete and remake traditional board games to challenge our kids.

  12. Nancy Swanson said:

    I use games and gamification with students for review and fun! There are games that allow teachers to type in the question and the review with the students. I use web 2.0 sites that contain games like Discovery Education and BrainPOP. Aligning games with subjects/standards makes learning fun for the students and they love it.

  13. Sean Gremminger said:

    I use games for review. From Kahoot to Quizlet, students enjoy interacting in these environments to prepare for high stakes tests. I also turn the tables and have students create games as projects, then use them as review. If students can make a Kahoot or Quizlet, they can teach others too. It’s a win-win! Plus,I have fun, and kids see that which continues to build rapport. Fun and learning-how can you go wrong?

  14. Marcia Rhinehart said:

    I love using board games and online games in the library.

    One of my favorites for 5th grade is Book-opoly. Students learn about classic literature while playing a Monolopy type game. Sometimes I have them play in teams which helps them learn about teamwork and building classroom community.

    My younger students love to play online games on the Hooda Math website and the ABCYA website. I love that they are learning new concepts and reviewing old concepts without even knowing it. We play the games on the SmartBoard which teaches them to encourage their classmates. Sometimes they play the games on the student laptops with a partner…we only have enough for everyone to share laptops.

    I am constantly trying to find new games (board games and online games). Once my students learn how to play the games, I let the love of learning new ideas take over. It is amazing when I show a group how to play a games and then they go to another group and teach them how to play. It encourages the students to become a teacher for the hour.

  15. Ashley Palmatier said:

    We have students create games based on content and then play each others. Students share ideas to make the games better. When we think we have our games perfected we share with another class.

  16. Kelli said:

    Students engage and remember if they are interested in the topic OR if the method of instruction is interesting to them!

  17. Guillermo Cortés said:

    I am using games with the ESL students to fill the educational gaps they brought from their home countries. I try to use SAS curriculum path and online games that can be used in the desktops since I don’t have iPads or tablets. Also allowing students to interact in the active board boosts their levels of confidence when using technology in a sheltered way.

  18. Dina said:

    I would use it to review or during small math and guided groups which is a time that we typically intervene and enrich.

  19. Kyle said:

    I use games multiple ways in my classroom. Games can be used to enhance the understanding of topics we are coving by giving them a broad and deeper understanding. They can also be a fun way to review a topic and get ready for an upcoming exam. Students find games and gamification more entertaining and a more fun and exciting way to learn. In the ever changing world of face paced games and in your face information, getting and keeping students attention is more challenging. Gamification is one way to be able to do so.

  20. Amy Fraboni said:

    Review Review Review. We are constantly having to go back, review and make sure our students keep what they have been taught. Finding games to keep these things fresh keeps the students engaged and wanting to give us that formative assessment.

  21. Margie Rogers said:

    We use online games in my computer lab regularly to keep our young students engaged while they are learning a variety of skills and problem-solving. We have a selection of games to reinforce math, reading, coding, and keyboarding! This is a wonderful, non-threatening way for them to practice and improve upon their personal best. It also provides a nice break from the classroom routine. Who says learning can’t be fun?

  22. Billie Wildman said:

    Students use games in my room for both stations and at review time. Online games on were wonderful when I was kicked out of my classroom for lab construction. The students forget they’re learning and start to enjoy grasping the concepts.

  23. Barbara Cotter said:

    Games are great for reinforcing concepts taught, As an introduction to concepts to be addressed and as great evaluation or assessment tools. I prefer the Ss know ahead of time what the goals for their learning are, formulate questions (focus questions) to guide the learning and help in their deciding what games best fit. Many Ss prefer to “take apart” a game (coding) and come up with their own. That is and should be encouraged. Games are excellent problem solvers if and when used effectively and appropriately. The creative mind works best when engaged in fun activities such as games. Game On!!!

    “Life is more fun if you play games.”
    ? Roald Dahl, My Uncle Oswald

  24. Chad Guge said:

    I use Kahoot for quick and easy reviews for my classes. I also create “modified” games such as Risk and Monopoly to both teach concepts, and to reinforce those concepts.

  25. Sarah Thompson said:

    I use games and gamification in my math groups, leveled literacy intervention groups, and when I visit classrooms. GoNoodle is an excellent resource that now has a “make your own trivia” video section that can be used for reviews, as an exit slip, or for brain breaks! I also use ClassDojo which keeps track of points earned throughout the day which leads to a “treasure store” that they can spend or save their points for, and it gives students a chance to create their own avatars. I also assist students with Mathletics, which also has avatars that are detailed by students, and gives students an opportunity to earn points for completing assignments, competing with others, and earning certificates.

  26. Adan Burgos said:

    We use games to reinforce skills and to differentiate instruction.

  27. Samson Meyer said:

    I use games in my math classes weekly as means of reinforcing topics discussed previously. Students enjoy the games and learn at the same t8me. Win-Win.

  28. Jill Edwards said:

    Games require strategy and application of skills –two vital copponents in making our students ready to persevere and compete in today’s world. Although these skills are needed to succeed in the games, students are having fun and interacting with others which makes it seem less like a tedious task. I have always used games in my classroom for these reasons.

  29. Amy said:

    Games require thinking without really realizing you are working on skills. They require strategy and application of skills and can be personalized to many entry points to make material accessible to all learners. They create buy in because students love to ” play” and often don’t realize there is a learning component to the play in which they are engaged.

  30. Paula Naugle said:

    I use Kahoot and Quizlet to review vocabulary from all subject areas with my students. We play Bingo games created for our units and Jeopardy games.

  31. Steve Dembo said:

    We drew the winners this morning… based on a random generator, the ten winners are:
    Ashley Palmatier
    April Moss
    Katherine Giroux
    Marcia Rhinehart
    Nancy Swanson
    Elizabeth Jorgenson
    Teresa Cypert
    and Judy!

    We’ll be emailing you to let you know how you can redeem your prize!

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