(Written by Noelle Eberts) Math and reading are the two most important academic skills that students must develop in order to be successful not only in school, but also in life. Many students, however, find math to be difficult to understand and become frustrated very quickly when asked to participate in a math class.
Research has proven that students learn better when they feel as if they are playing a game which is why smartphone math apps are a great way for students to get more practice without endless rote memorization or muddling through problems in hopes of getting the correct answer. Parents will also find these apps helpful, giving them a resource to better help their student succeed – even if it has been a long time since the parent’s last math class!
The perfect addition to the math tool box for intermediate school through high school students, roughly grades four through eleven. Students can see how a problem is solved in a step-by-step manner with explanations throughout the process. The app features the most common formulas and calculations used in the intermediate, middle, and high school math classes as well as games that will help to make mastering skills like multiplication fun. Not only is this app appropriate and effective for students, but it would be a great help to parents who may not remember their middle or high school math classes and need a little refresher course in order to help their student be successful.
A good reference and study tool for students in grades kindergarten through grade eight. Students are able to enter a problem then see how it is solved in real time – an invaluable reference for those times that the student gets home from school then forgets how to do the problem. The app includes sections on basic math functions, number lines and integer values, rounding, beginner-level ratios, proportions, and fractions. Parents will also find this a good study tool because it will show students the steps to complete the problem instead of just the answer. Therefore, when students come to take the test on the material, they are well-prepared in the skill and able to perform because they understand how the skill is completed step by step.
- Math Workout – Free
The brain, just like the body, needs to work out to be healthy. This app challenges users to daily math games and problem solving situations to help keep their minds nimble and their math skills sharp. With a focus on mental math, this app supports users seeking to improve their skills in mental math as well as develop speed in recalling basic math facts. Because of the focus on quick recall in the form of games, this app would be a useful addition to a parent’s smartphone as a means of entertaining kids with a game that promotes learning.
While there is no denying that flash cards are one of the best ways to learn basic facts, either in math or in other subjects, it can be cumbersome to carry around a pack of flashcards as well as keeping several decks, one for each math operation. This app allows students to receive the benefits using flashcards in an easy to carry format. Students are able to see their fastest time with a perfect score in order to keep them motivated as they try to beat that score. The app also keeps track of missed questions in each session so those problems can be reviewed or retried later in the game. It is fully customizable by parents and teachers to best serve the needs of the student.
This app allows student to not only select a game and a skill upon with to be tested, but they also can chose between five levels which provides them with many opportunities to practice their math skills. As the problems are presented in the form of games, students will be more likely to practice their math skills with this app as opposed to paper and pencil practice. Parents and teachers are able to track several players in order to monitor growth and skill mastery.
Seemingly endless pages of skill builder problems are daunting for most students; however, they are extremely disheartening for students who struggle with math. Eventually, these students will simply give up in frustration. Yet, through the use of these apps, students can get the help they need in a fun, flexible, and immediate manner to keep their frustration at an acceptable level while reinforcing what they are learning in their classes. By using these types of apps, students are able to develop their math skills in a non-threatening, fun manner making math more accessible and less threatening for both students and, in some cases, their parents.
About the author: Noelle Eberts has a passion for connecting children to the possibilities that math can unlock.