With students out of school Monday for President’s Day, it’s a good time to be aware of a new online game offering free help in math for children in kindergarten through third grade.
Georgia Public Broadcasting has released GASHA GO!, designed for teachers to use in classroom instruction but also for K-3 students to build math skills at home.
The game tries to engage children with characters and challenges to develop their “number sense” – understanding what numbers mean and their relationship to one another.
GASHA GO! comprises 10 math challenges with three levels of difficulty. When players master a level, they win a “toy” that they can add to their toy chest. The goal is to collect all 30 toys.
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“Education is the core of GPB’s mission,” Teya Ryan, GPB’s president and CEO, said in a news release. “We continue to hear from teachers that good foundational math skills are critical to future success. As GPB has done with all our free digital learning resources, we are listening to teachers’ instructional needs and engaging students in a very meaningful way with GASHA GO.”
The game is aligned to Georgia’s math standards, and Georgia elementary math teachers participated in the development process, according to the news release. GASHA GO! is designed to work across web and mobile platforms and is available online and via mobile devices at www.gpb.org/gasha-go.
GASHA GO! was produced in partnership with the award-winning media developers at FableVision Studios, based in Boston.
“Creating the colorful world of GASHA GO! gave us the opportunity to provide early learners with an incredibly immersive experience – empowering them to engage with gameplay and curriculum in a unique way,” Gary Goldberger, president and co-founder of FableVision Studios, said in the news release. “FableVision's partnership with GPB seeks to meet the crucial educational needs of children in Georgia. We're proud to deliver creative solutions that serve learners of all ages."
GPB communications director Mandy Wilson explained to the Ledger-Enquirer why the game is called GASHA GO! The name comes from the Japanses terms “gashapon” or “gachapon,” which refer to a variety of vending machine-dispensed capsule toys popular in Japan and elsewhere. "Gashapon" is a Japanese onomatopoeia composed of two sounds: "gasha" or "gacha," for the sound of a crank on a toy vending machine, and "pon" for the sound of the toy capsule dropping into the receptacle.