What parents need to know
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Algebra Touch is an educational app that teaches and allows practice of algebraic concepts. Kids learn to drag and rearrange single-variable polynomials so that like terms are together for easier adding. Then kids can tap the operator between the terms to compute answers. Terms can be factored or combined until the variable is isolated. Kids (or parents) can also create their own problems to rearrange and solve. The app saves the problems that were created for later use. Kids can contact others via email or Facebook to get help with problems.
What kids can learn
Language & Reading
- following directions
Thinking & Reasoning
- making conclusions
- applying information
- identifying strengths and weaknesses
Engagement, Approach, Support
In this positive, low-stress algebra intro, kids get encouraging words at each step of an equation and access problems in many ways. The screen only wiggles at wrong answers, so kids are encouraged to try again.
Critical-thinking skills will help kids clarify what's happening and reflect on how each step will, or won't, lead to the right answer.
The user interface lists lessons in order of difficulty and provides clear direction. It's so well-organized, you don't need a tutorial.
What's it about?
Kids choose a lesson, then a basic problem related to that lesson appears with a written explanation. Along with the explanation comes an instruction ("Tap the +") telling kids what to do next to make the answer appear. Kids can then practice that lesson. Practice goes beyond the expectation that kids will enter the final answer; rather, kids tap the steps involved in solving the equation, and the app gives the answer. Tap incorrectly and the image simply wiggles. Choose correctly and the next step appears until kids arrive at the final answer.
Is it any good?
ALGEBRA TOUCH allows kids to manipulate and solve single-variable algebraic equations and terms in a very creative way. Kids drag their finger on the screen to move terms from one side of the equation to the other, or they can tap to factor or solve. Tapping will compute all the arithmetic automatically, except for division, since the app requires fractions to be fully reduced before the answer is correct. Students who want extra practice or a new way to approach essential concepts can find both in Algebra Touch, a unique supplement to basic algebra education.
Families can talk about...
For kids who seem to be ahead of the math curve in school, offer this app as a way to allow them to dig deeper into the concepts and challenge themselves in a fun way.
Encourage kids struggling in certain areas of algebra to choose those specific topics on this app to approach the problems in a different way.