Originally published in 2012, therefore some elements of the gameplay may have changed.
All school year, my sixth grader Ben has come home talking about a math computer game he plays at school, raving about how awesome it is!
Little did I know that I was about to give him the same opportunity to play it a home, along with the ability to earn real money as an educational allowance for his achievements on this game.
When I had the opportunity to give DimensionU a try with my kids, I had no idea that this was the very game that Ben has been playing, and when I told him about it, I thought he was going to go through the roof. Now, keep in mind that Ben is my gamer kid, and he’s brilliant in school. My fourth grader Caleb is not nearly as enthusiastic about school (although equally as smart), so I knew he’d be the one to convince that this would be a fun learning opportunity.
How was I even going to get him to give it a try? Well, first of all with the Education Allowance I was able to set up through DimensionU. It helps the kids earn cold hard cash when they meet their achievement goals. This is an option as a parent I was able to opt in or out of, but I know how much I like being rewarded for good work, why not bless my kids in the same way?
While it was a great perk for Ben, who was interested in playing and learning regardless, Caleb was most intrigued and motivated by this idea and jumped right in. There are two gaming options, Gadget Works and Meltdown. Meltdown is my boys favorite. There, the child plays as a character, going through a world meeting goals and completing problems appropriate to their unique grade level. I’ve sat with them while they played it, and I’ll be honest, I was impressed at the math questions they had to answer (no, I’m pretty sure I’m indeed NOT smarter than a 5th grader)
Because I set up a parent account with the Educational Allowance (which is $9.95 per year), I get a report emailed to me on the progress of each child. This helps me see where they’re excelling, as well as where they may need an additional boost of help.
I did like the fact that setting up a parent account with the allowance is not necessary to let the kids play. They have the option to play without the parent account, but they won’t earn the allowance and the parent won’t get the email assessment report. I personally like the idea of the parent account, but I do understand that it may not be for everyone.
As a family, we’re are very happy with DimensionU. In fact, the only problem I have with it is making the boys take turns on my laptop because they both want to play. The games are timed, so that definitely helps. When one is finished, the other gets their turn. I feel great about letting them use this program, it’s very user friendly, and while they’re playing games, which they love, they’re also learning, which I love. What could be better than that?