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How Many Saturdays? app review

What if we measured our lives in units other than hours, days, months, and years? Would life “feel shorter? Longer? More absurd? More precious?” The Exploratorium‘s app How Many Saturdays? (2015; iOS only) considers this idea by comparing the number of Saturdays in one’s lifespan to other, less common measurements of time. After a brief […]

Reflex app review

In addition to hearing the Duran Duran song in my head, I know Reflex (ExploreLearning, iPad app released 2014; iOS and desktop) as a program that my child’s teacher uses to supplement the class’s math curriculum…and with which my kid is obsessed. While it’s geared toward classroom use (and homeschooling), we play it happily on […]

Pet Bingo app review

I wish I had had Pet Bingo (Duck Duck Moose/Khan Academy, 2015; iOS and Android) when I was in elementary school. It combines one of my favorite things, pets, with one of my least favorite things, the necessary evil that is math, for math practice that is actually kinda…fun. (Here’s another math app I like […]

On Raising a Scientist (Who Happens to Be a Girl)

It started when my daughter was around three: people letting us know that the things she’s most interested in aren’t meant for girls. At the time, these remarks were directed at my husband and me and revolved around her love of trains. She really, really loved trains. From Thomas the Tank Engine to the real […]

Math Tales: The Jungle app review

Marshmallow Games‘s Math Tales: The Jungle app (March 2016; iOS only) opens with upbeat, Caribbean-style music and happy jungle animals poking their heads out of greenery to greet the player. Once the pulsing, yellow “play” button is pressed, the player is brought to the first page of a story: “On a sunny day, the king […]

Motion Math: Cupcake! app review

I am not a math person. But I am a cupcake person, so math about making and selling cupcakes is far more appealing. Motion Math: Cupcake! (Motion Math, April 2015) allowed me to enact my cupcake-bakery (cupcakery?) daydreams. As the app opens, you set up shop with a one-oven bakery facility, a cute sea-green Vespa […]

Picture books measure up

When I was a young student, I don’t recall learning about math concepts from picture books. Of course, I could simply have forgotten, but I do think it may be fair to say that there are more high-quality math picture books today than there were when I was a student. Nowadays, whenever I begin a […]

Peg + Cat: The Tree Problem app review

The little-girl and feline, respectively, stars of the animated series Peg + Cat, have a series of loosely math-related, cat-stuck-in-a-tree adventures in The Tree Problem app (PBS Kids, January 2015). First choose a location: Math-tropolis, Dino Valley, The South Pole, Broadway, The Farm, or Peg’s Backyard. (If you’re indecisive, that just gives you time to hear […]

What Makes a Good Math Storybook?

Owen giggles with glee as he pokes his eighteen-month-old fingers through the caterpillar holes; Ashley, age five, and Ryan, six, diligently work to stuff as many lima beans as possible into a child’s mitten; Matthew and Haley carefully measure the perimeter of their fifth-grade classroom while their classmates are online researching the sizes of various […]

From The Guide: Math Picture Books

In “What Makes a Good Math Storybook?”, Audrey M. Quinlan explores some “classic picture books that can be enjoyed as works of literature and also to painlessly introduce math concepts to children.” As recent issues of The Horn Book Guide have shown, the math-is-fun picture-book model is alive and well today. The following Guide-recommended books […]