Can “personal metrics” help struggling readers do better in school?
By Tyler on March 24th, 2011
If you use Foursquare, you’ve probably noticed how when you “check in” at a restaurant or wherever, the app tells you how many more visits it’ll take for you to become mayor.
If you’re a runner, you probably know about Nike’s GPS app and software embedded in running shoes that tracks the speed and distance people run and acts as a digital personal trainer.
Maybe you’ve heard about how Vail Resorts has placed chips in their lift tickets that can track skiers as they go up and down the mountain and provide super-cool data for each visitor about their accomplishments and activities on the mountain at the end of the day.
These are exciting examples of how technology – which today we can take with us wherever we go and which is smart enough to remember who we are — can quickly provide real data that is applicable to our lives. We’re seeing “personal metrics” pop up in everything from exercise to weight loss. And used in the right way, it pushes us compete with ourselves, beat our “personal bests,” and improve our lives.
Why not use this to personalize learning even more — and to motivate the millions of kids in America who struggle with reading (our mission here at Scholastic)?
You might have seen this post from Fast Company today about how developers at Scholastic have applied some of what’s motivating and game-like about Foursquare and Nike’s running app into the next generation of READ 180, a program used in schools to help kids who struggle to read. We think by putting data in front of students that shows them the progress they’re making and pushes them to compete with themselves, kids who have had very little success in school will start to see that it’s possible for them to improve, succeed, and reach their goals.
Technology never ceases to amaze me…