Visual Fractions Decimals and Percentages

App review by
Debbie Gorrell, Common Sense Media
Visual Fractions Decimals and Percentages App Poster Image
Fab resource for creating models could use help menu.

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The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn about values and conversions among fractions, decimals, and percentages. These are often difficult concepts for kids to grasp, and creating models is an excellent way to help them visualize parts of a whole. They can divide the models into as many as 10,000 units on grids and as many as 360 units on circles. Kids also can represent mixed numbers using multiple whole grids or circles. These many options allow for kids of varying abilities to use the tool. Before using the app, kids should have some basic knowledge of the concepts to fully benefit from using the models. For example, they should know that a fraction consists of a numerator and a denominator and that a decimal includes digits to the right of a decimal point. Visual Fractions Decimals and Percentages helps kids approach what are often difficult concepts in more approachable ways.

Ease of Play

Content is neatly organized, and features are easy to use. 

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Visual Fractions Decimals and Percentages is a math tool that kids can use to create models. As the name suggests, the models display a visual representation of a fraction, and the value also is given as a decimal and a percentage. For example, if kids create a model showing the fraction "1/4," the values "0.25" and "25%" also are displayed. Options include grid and circle models.

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What's it about?

VISUAL FRACTIONS DECIMALS AND PERCENTAGES has two main options for creating models: grids and circles. Within each option are three categories: one unit, several units, and art grid or art circle. One unit is for creating models that represent values less than 1. Several units is for creating models that represent values greater than 1. And the art options can be used for creating models with multiple colors. The models then can be saved. The grids can be divided into as many as 100 rows and 100 columns, resulting in a fraction with a denominator of 10,000. The circles can be divided into as many as 360 sections, resulting in a fraction with a denominator of 360. Once kids divide the unit as needed, they tap to shade sections, creating their models. Kids can choose from seven colors.

Is it any good?

Visual Fractions Decimals and Percentages is a handy, no-frills tool for creating models. With many options for dividing whole units, as well as options for modeling mixed numbers, kids with varying abilities can use it. They won't get any instruction, so the app is best used to support learning. Fortunately, as a help menu is not provided, using the features is mostly intuitive. Activity suggestions could extend the overall learning value, but it's still an extremely useful tool for supporting important math concepts with visual representations.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about other ways to model fractions, decimals, and percentages. Have kids use unusual shapes, such as pentagons, and partition them into equal parts.

  • Discuss the importance of fractions, decimals, and percentages in everyday life. Ask kids to describe situations in which they might need to know about them.

  • Give kids different numbers to model using the app. Vary the type (a fraction, a decimal, or a percentage), and ask which was most difficult to model and why.

App details

  • Device: iPad
  • Subjects: Math: fractions, ratio
  • Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: part-whole relationships
    Tech Skills: using and applying technology
  • Price: $3.99
  • Pricing structure: Paid
  • Release date: October 7, 2013
  • Category: Education
  • Size: 1.20 MB
  • Publisher: Esa Helttula
  • Version: 1.1
  • Minimum software requirements: Requires iOS 5.0 or later

For kids who love math

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