Thursday, June 12, 2014

S.M.A.R.T Adventures Mission Math App

To me, there is nothing better than the feeling I get when I find the PERFECT resource for a kid.  Something that they love, that gets them excited about math and improves their skills. 

Recently I was working with a fifth grade girl who has always struggled with math.  I have been part of her team since she was in Kindergarten and she really knows all my tricks.  She is the hardest worker and has made great gains but still needs to put in extra effort in math class.  When I started using an iPad with my students this year, I thought that would hold her interest and help her get the extra practice she needed but it didn't appeal to her as much as I thought it would.

Until now.  I finally found an app she can't get enough of and it is the perfect thing for her to use during summer school and at home to keep her skills sharp.  I picked it up one day on Apps Gone Free but its usual price is $4.99.

If you have a student in grades 4-6 who might need a little extra something or are looking for apps to recommend to parents, you might want to check this out.  It is targeted at girls but I have used it with several boys who enjoyed it as well.

S.M.A.R.T Adventures Mission Math

The app starts by setting up a story about landing on a space station.  This takes up some time and makes it feel more like a game.  This makes it so it isn't the app to choose if you are just looing for something quick for a one time use.  It is much better used as something kids will have a chance to go back to. 

Kids get a chance  to choose their character next.  They are all female because that is the target audience for this game.  Again this makes it seem like more of a game but takes up time as well.

From the hallway, you can go to the elevator and move up and down floors.  You go into labs and solve problems.

Here a student works on place value in order to free a puppy in the Biology lab

Here a student was unsure what to do in the Equipment lab.  They just need to click on tutorial and it will show them how to do the task.

In the equipment lab, students focus on factors and multiples

In the chemistry lab, a student practices with metric measurement
This app has a lot to offer students in grades 4-6.  It is a great way to review and extend concepts they have learned but there is enough support available in the game so that if a concept is new to a student, they can learn and develop it without feeling completely overwhelmed.

The purchase price of $4.99 and the amount of time that you would want students to invest in playing this game so that they can get to the good math concepts means it wouldn't be something I would put on a class set of iPads or even offer to a full class.  It is however, just the right app for certain students and definitely worth the purchase price for these kids!

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