7 Tools to Create Online Learning Games

Decorative: "Online Learning Games"


Creating/assigning online study/review games can be fast, easy, and free if you have the right tools. There are many excellent and free options available, but below are some that have proven useful over the years (with sample games for each):

A. Basic Tips

  • Use What's Already Available: On a number of these sites, standard textbooks for many fields -- psychology, law, medicine, anatomy, etc. -- already have games loaded for each chapter. Search available games before you "reinvent the wheel." If you find pre-made games, assign them, embed them, or copy them over to your account and modify the list as you like instead of recreating the basics: this saves a lot of time and effort!
  • Embed Where Possible: Many of these games are embeddable into D2L, so students can play them directly in the course shell: this tends to increase engagement markedly. 

B. 7 Tools

1. StudyStack - Load binary information once (terms, definitions; theorists, theories; authors, works/quotations; etc.) and students can choose from 13 study methods -- Flashcards, Matching, Hangman, Crossword, Type In, Quiz, Test, StudyStack, Study Table, Bug Match, Hungry Bug, Unscramble, Chopped (Word Chop).

2. Quizlet - Again, a game/review site for binary information with a Learn mode, Flashcards, Write & Spell options (both less useful as the vocabulary becomes more complex), Test, Match, Gravity (a game with asteroids attacking your planet), and minorly engaging Live Sessions.

  • Sample: French (Try "Spell" to hear the language.) 

3. Purpose Games - Create Text quizzes, Image quizzes, Matching games, Type-the-Answer quizzes, Multiple Choice quizzes. Make playlists of relevant games (your own or from the many already existing), create groups, and/or set up tournaments and Leaderboards.

4. ProProfs Brain Games and Online Puzzles - Create your own games -- Word Search, Crossword, Sliding Puzzle, Jigsaw, Hangman, Word Scramble, and Brain Teasers. The puzzle options (especially jigsaw) are especially useful for visual learning -- anatomy, maps, etc.

5. Jeopardy Labs - The simplest (and free) way to build Jeopardy-like games online using a simple editor (and without PowerPoint!) -- or find a workable option (2,000,000+ games to search). Free to make, but for a small fee you can add images, math equations, videos/audios, etc.

6. EducaPlay - Another free tool to use for the following types of activities: Riddle, Fill in the Blanks, Crossword Puzzle, Dialogue, Dictation, Interactive Map, Jumbled Word, Jumbled Sentence, Slide Show, Matching Game, Matching Columns Game, Matching Mosaic Game, Alphabet Game, Wordsearch Puzzle, Quiz, Videoquiz, Collection.

7. Quia - Create/assign 16 types of learning activities quickly and easily: Matching, Flashcards, Concentration, Word Search, Battleship, Challenge Board, Columns, Hangman, Jumbled Words, Ordered List, Picture Perfect, Pop-ups, Rags to Riches, Scavenger Hunt, Cloze, Patterns. Note: Free to use/assign, but annual fee to create your own.

8. QuizGeo (NEW) - "create and play quizzes based on geography using Google Maps. This can include anything from locating all of the countries in the world to locating all of the playground equipment at your local park or school. Since you place the questions on the map you can decide how large of an area your quiz will encompass."

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