A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this app.
What parents need to know
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
In SYMBOLAB CALCULATOR, users type algebra, calculus, trigonometry, geometry, statistics, and graph equations into a calculator. Examples in each category offer templates that assist with correctly inputting numbers within challenging problems. A pop-up advertisement, which may contain inappropriate content for kids, will appear prior to revealing any answer in the free version. By offering access to the camera, students can take a picture of the problem to solve. Consistent errors occurred during use of the camera, indicating that the feature was unavailable or that lighting was inappropriate. Users most appropriate for this app are middle school, high school, and college students. Solutions can be shared through email, message, and social media. Users seeking more educational value will need to consider upgrading to a paid version of the app, which offers help in figuring out how to complete complicated problems following the necessary steps.
Is it any good?
In general, a calculator is a great tool to help kids with studying and learning new concepts, but the paid version will eliminate iffy ads and add educational features. Symbolab Calculator offers answers to very complicated math subjects that not everyone is able to solve, quickly and easily. Templates included in the free version assist users with inputting numbers in the correct location when solving equations that require parentheses, fractions, and exponents. Visual representations of graphs and charts can also aid learning. For kids with dyscalculia, a disorder that impacts their ability to learn new math concepts, the app can be used as a learning tool to build confidence in solving problems if they answer correctly. While the photo feature allows for customization, effective use of it can be inconsistent in achieving an answer. The biggest issues for parents are the ads in the free version and the risk of cheating. If you opt for the full version, the ads are gone and kids can access the steps in each problem, which may be a good investment if the app seems to be a good fit for your kid.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about how they can use Symbolab Calculator as a learning and studying strategy to check answers, after first trying their best to solve the problem on their own. What might happen if someone only uses this app to get answers but doesn't understand the steps?
Discuss how despite use of technology, legibility of handwriting and accurate input of information is important for use during math to prevent careless mistakes. Is their handwriting of math problems legible enough for the camera to read with this app? Did they input the problem accurately?
- Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
- Subjects: Math: algebra, arithmetic, calculus, division, equations, fractions, functions, geometry, graphing, measurement, multiplication, probability, ratio, statistics
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: applying information, defining problems, making conclusions
Tech Skills: using and applying technology
- Price: Free to Try
- Pricing structure: Free to try ($.99/week, $2.49/mo.)
- Release date: October 26, 2017
- Category: Education
- Size: 61.50 MB
- Publisher: Symbolab
- Version: 3.3.3
- Minimum software requirements: iOS 8.0 or later
- Last updated: March 15, 2019
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