Every Friday, I share a website (or app) that I’ve heard about, checked into, been excited to use. This one is a math app. Since ‘math’ is by far the most popular search term of readers who seek out my blog, I know you’re going to enjoy this review.
In my classroom, I offer a variety of sponge websites that students can play during the 5-10 minutes left between projects, before breaks, or when they finish early. I usually provide a box of links themed around whatever academic endeavor I’d like to tie into that day. Often, that’s math. Small doses, repetition–perfect for math skills.
Lately, I notice more and more of the serious students choose math facts websites rather than the aliens-and-asteroids variety. If that sounds like your class, you’re going to love Timed Test. Just out by FSG Ltd., it’s a purist’s approach to practicing math.
Timed Test is a full-featured addition math facts timed test simulator. Create completely customizable timed tests.
There are three versions: 1) Timed Test Free is limited to addition. 2) Timed Test includes all math functions–addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, and 3) Timed Test Arcade includes all math functions as well as an arcade option for those who want the bell-ringing sound of success. #1 is free and #2 and 3 are available for a small price.
In the fully-featured Timed Test Arcade, each student creates their own account so the app can track individual progress. Tests can be customized for difficulty, math function, time, low/high numbers, number of problems and amount of time. The problem presentation screen is big, bold, and easy to use. It tests not only student skill, but his/her mental math speed. When the student completes a test, s/he wins tokens to use in the arcade. Right now, there’s one arcade game (Fish Drop), but there are plans for more. The tests are easy to set up and self-directed, and provide students the ability to review past tests and track their achievements. Test results can be printed and/or emailed to parents/teachers.
I like that students can’t use the arcade unless they have won enough tokens through the math tests. No distraction there
I set a few of my students lose on the app and it was a rousing success. They loved testing speed on math problems and worked all the harder to get tokens for the Arcade.
The backstory on this app is fascinating. Chris Popson, a recent college grad collaborated with his dad who runs Formsoft Group–developer of solutions that improve business productivity–to use Formsoft’s core competencies to create an app that streamlined math skills. Chris tested the app in an elementary school classroom and entertained the students with stories of how he went from college grad to inventor. In my school, Invention Convention is a big part of the 4th grade curriculum so I can imagine the excitement that greeted Chris’ stories.
Overall, this is one of the better apps I’ve seen on the subject of math, with a little bit of everything to satisfy students, teachers, and parents.
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Jacqui Murray is the editor of a technology curriculum for K-sixth grade, creator of two technology training books for middle school and three ebooks on technology in education. She is the author of Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy midshipman. She is webmaster for six blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, a columnist for Examiner.com, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing Teachers, Cisco blogger, IMS tech expert, and a weekly contributor to Write Anything. Currently, she’s editing a thriller for her agent that should be out to publishers this summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.