by EMANTRAS Inc.
Interested in an educational app that develops a child’s mathematical and critical thinking skills in a variety of ways? If you happen to have a kindergartener at home or in the classroom then Mathomatix Measurement by EMANTRAS, Inc. is certainly worth the .99¢ download. It has been on the market since December of 2010 and can be viewed on any Apple device running iOS 3.1 or later. When EMANTRAS, Inc. says they are going to give their viewers something, they mean it! This mathematical application provides the user five very interactive ways to develop their academic skills in the facts of measurement through coverage of weight, time, volume and length. In the information section, Applicable2U learned that this app has been aligned with the National and California State Standards. Knowing this information as both a parent and a teacher, we feel confident that the time spent “playing” has been valuable time from both a learning and fun aspect.
The design that EMANTRAS, Inc. chose to use is very kid friendly, repetitive and graphically appealing as children play “real life” mathematical experiments in order to enhance the math curriculum. Those ages 5-6 will feel independent as they follow very clear directions during which they are both positively and negatively reinforced in some manner. However, if users need support, one to one interaction with either a parent or teacher is certainly a choice as well. The mathematical thinking that will be occurring will overwhelm those watching. Visually users will hear and see directions at the top of each window. In addition, choices may be provided through graphical cards or interaction with various objects in order to answer each games main question(s).
Upon entering, users will immediately notice an adorable giraffe that talks, animation spinning and moving across the page and three player options. The most important option is to establish the user within the application. Simply click on the “settings” button in order to add your child’s name. Unfortunately, only one account can be set up. This design is wonderful for families that have one child, however, the potential that this app can provide could benefit so much more if the option to add multiple users could be made available. Although more and more school districts are purchasing large quantities of Apple devices, some classrooms do not have this luxury. By setting up centers around the room, teachers could have previously set each student up to a particular device thus tracking each users success rate. Success rate can be viewed by looking within the “My Stuff” section from the main the screen. It is here that users will collect random objects along the way as they play: Crazy Clock, Scale Tale, Fill Me Up, Long & Short, and Action Month.
Crazy Clock: With a flower like clock, users will be presented a time scenario (morning, day or night) such as “I play with my puppy at 6 in the evening.” Depending on the time of day, players will notice when moving the minute hand that the background scenery changes. The number that is showing within the scenario will be highlighted on the clock. Once there, a quick chime of the clock will occur and users will be positively reinforced. Oddly enough, this particular activity does not allow for incorrect answers.
Scale Tale: With a one eyed monster that has really long arms and happens to look like Mike Wazowski, players will explore the concept of heavier and lighter. As two objects are magically dropped from the sky, our one eyed monster will swing his arms up and down like a real scale. It is important to note that objects are announced to avoid any confusion. With every correct answer, our little green friend will begin to fill his belly, while incorrect answers are thrown into the air and a quirky sound is made.
Fill Me Up: With a simple drag and drop users are in control of how this activity will go. Although they should take note of the objects possible destination below (sand pail, dinner plate) as there is a difference. Once objects have been dragged and dropped a new question will appear – which is less or which is more. It is here that players will be introduced to the concept of volume. With every correct answer, players are verbally rewarded and given a green checkmark. With a sweet little oopsie, users will know they did something wrong as they will receive a red “x” in the middle of the screen.
Long & Short: Here users are given two choices and are expected to answer such questions like which is longer or shorter. This activity will set the stage for understanding length. Numerically they will not know each length, but visually users will be able to answer the above two questions.
Action Month: In this activity, users will manipulate letters in order to spell the months of the year. Letters do not need to be dragged or dropped in any particular order. No need to worry if you drop it exactly over each matching letter. If the colored letter is near its match, it will pop into place. Simply fill in the blanks and see the month go wild. It might be interesting to add in a future update, objects that relate to each month when it goes wild. For example, a shamrock for March or a pumpkin for October. In addition, once all months have been spelled, it might be interesting to see each month laid out side by side either as a storyboard window or a scrolling window.
Since having downloaded this application, my soon to be kindergartener has been actively developing his measurement skills. Like most children, he enjoys seeing his rewards in “his stuff” area. Although he may have been verbally rewarded throughout, viewing his stuff just extends the smiles that much longer. Overall, Applicable2U was very pleased with our download of Mathomatix Measurement. If directions are unclear, users are provided a brief tutorial by simply clicking the “i” button in the lower left hand corner. However, we would suggestion providing users the ability to tap individual words/sentences in case questions were misunderstood or repetition is required. Regardless of what your role may be, this educational app is an excellent addition to any whole group or individual instruction. If you would like to learn more about EMANTRAS, Inc. and other curricular apps that they have to offer, please visit their website here. To begin downloading Mathomatix Measurement to your iTunes library, simply click here.