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Pros: Bite-sized activities with built-in audio are designed to help students learn new concepts and practice skills, and the games provide a nice brain-break to celebrate small successes.
Cons: The user interface is a bit lackluster and light on content, and students receive little guidance for incorrect answers.
Bottom Line: Solid activities with real-time feedback help kids learn and earn rewards at their own pace.
How Can I Teach with This Tool?
Teachers will easily see the usefulness of Anton in helping students grow in knowledge and understanding. Whether teachers are using the app for a warmup, a quick check for understanding, a supplement to a larger lesson, or an exit ticket, the short activities allow kids to practice skills and earn game time without the overwhelming feel of many skill-and-drill tools currently available. The interactive lessons are specific, offering practice in multiple subject areas, such as nouns, prime numbers, vocabulary, and scientific concepts. Use the study set feature to help kids acquire new domain-specific vocabulary. With careful planning, teachers can match their word sets to other lessons and activities on the site, thus giving students the preliminary knowledge they need to be successful. Once kids are familiar with the site, encourage them to bank their gaming coins for an extended gaming period on a day of their choosing.
The games are more strategy-based than content-specific, so it does set up a bit of an "eat your broccoli to get dessert" dynamic. However, for kids who struggle with focus or who need SEL support, the ability to earn a gaming credit after only two or three short skill-building activities can be a motivator to engage in successful attempts. Although it's currently a bit light on content, the site promises more in the future, and the developers actively seek user feedback in order to improve their product.