Current Campaign

Game Workz -21st Century Career Readiness Course

 

PROBLEM

Self-driving cars, robots, artificial intelligence, and computer software are powering the growth of our country. MIT Technology Review in 2013 highlighted a study that shows 45% of jobs will be automated in 2033. Automation has slipped into every industry to make corporations more efficent and profitable.

Consequently, corporations in business, construction, healthcare, manufacturing, information technology and research industries are seeking employees who are Algebra proficient. “Algebra is about how to find the unknowns, how to organize information, how to think critically, how to make decisions and how to see patterns,” states Judy Zimny, a former principal in the Dallas Independent School District and chief program development officer at ASCD (formerly the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Algebra is the gateway to higher level math that leads to problem solving and creativity to devise new products and services.

Sadly, Algebra I is the gatekeeper for many people. Dr. Sharif Shakrani, Co-director, MSU Education Policy Center wrote in the Fall 2006 New Educator article, The Michigan Merit Curriculum, “less than one-third of the state’s 770 districts require Algebra I to earn a high school diploma;”meaning many Michiganders did not have Algebra, preventing them from matriculation to higher paying careers that depend upon problem solving skills learned in algebra.

“Algebra is the single most failed course in high school, the most failed course in community college, and, along with English language for nonnative speakers, the single biggest academic reason that community colleges have a high dropout rate. Although 60 percent of students enrolled at community colleges must take at least one course in math, about eighty percent of students never fulfill the requirement. They leave without graduating, states Cathy Davidson, a professor and founder of the Futures Initiative at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York.

Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) jobs will grow 13 percent, compared to 9 percent for non-STEM jobs. Regions that are economically prosperous have lots of residents who have completed post-secondary training in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

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Lack of Algebra proficiency is killing the economic growth of Detroit as many residents are not prepared to transition from manual factory jobs to higher-paying jobs requiring Algebra proficiency. In fact, many adults are terrified of Algebra. This fear is preventing their upward economic mobility.

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SOLUTION

“Mathematics is an activity. It's not stuff you know, it's things you DO (and can do). Natural selection equipped us supremely well to learn actions by actually doing them. In fact, any other way is hopelessly inefficient. eg. Try learning to ride a bike by sitting in a lecture or reading a book - or even watching a video! It doesn't work.

The studies of Street Mathematics show that pretty much anyone can become proficient at mathematics if they pick it up in the course of actions relevant to them. If designed suitably, video games are activity simulators with a dopamine reward system. When someone plays ANY game, they are learning something. The challenge for the math educator is to make that learning be about DOING mathematics.

Kevin Devlin

Director, Stanford Mathematics Outreach Project, Stanford Graduate School of Education, PhD in Mathematics, University of Bristol, 1971

Author, Mathematics Education for a New Video Games as a Medium for Learning 

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Uplift, Inc. is sponsoring Game Workz to assist 1000 adult students to improve their Tech Basics and Algebra Proficiency. Game Workz utilizes video gaming concepts to practice Algebra to prepare for an eSport tournament of problem solving. Adult students are DOING Algebra and not just learning facts and equations.

HOW IT WORKZ

Students will register for 21st Century Career Readiness Course housed at automation Workz Institute

Students will complete 21st Century Career Readiness Course sections

  • Basic tech Review

  • Math - Algebra prep

  • WorkKeys Practice

Get access to Gaming competition software

Practice individually to get high score

High scorers combine into teams

LIVE Multibracket competition for cash