Our intentions are good, but we're focusing on the wrong thing, and it's hurting students. If students can flip and multiply, they can pass the test -- the standard sign of academic achievement. Our worry over the achievement gap puts students into narrow contexts of thought full of vast, isolated content and speedy tricks. Unlike the cereal, tricks aren't for kids.
They must be more than a set of choices with rewards that possibly lack the need for any real critical thinking and problem solving. They must connect with the player, so that the player cares about their participation, involvement, and hopefully, the learning that they will transfer to real-life contexts.