A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this website.
What parents need to know
What's it about?
Math Central is a website that features math learning resources for kids as well as teachers. Mathematicians from centuries past and present peer through pentagonal frames strung across the main page. Mathematician biographies, Quandries and Queries, and Problem of the Month are primarily for kids, while the Resource Room, Mathematics with a Human Face, Teacher's Bulletin Board, Outreach Activities, and Math Beyond School are primarily for adults and teachers. The site is available in three languages: English, French, and Spanish.
Is it any good?
The only arrows to sling at Math Central are its penchant for wordiness and the fact that kids might struggle to find the kid-friendliest parts of the site. The rest is pure awesomeness. Once kids get comfortable exploring and poking around, they'll stumble upon loads and loads of amazing resources: rotating photos and biographies of male and female mathematicians (Rene Descartes and Mary Sommerville), multiple ways to get help with math questions -- direct, email, snail mail, or fax -- and a searchable list of more than 7,800 topics (wow!) organized A to Z, some with 20 or more distinct question-answers (double wow!).
Teachers and parents will find even more that's useful: the Resource Room offers a collection of informal yet thoughtful articles donated by teachers and organized by elementary, middle, and high school levels, as well as mathematical topic. Sixty articles as diverse as "Carbon 14 Dating" and "Spelunking" demonstrate how math is applied in real life on the Math Beyond School page, and the outside link "Aboriginal Perspectives" sports tipi raising videos and Canadian standards-aligned lessons. Professional resources like math fairs, programs, and contests organized by province and links to professional associations are especially useful for teachers across Canada. No matter: math teachers and parents everywhere will want to make this site a regular stop. Two final teensy little arrows: the free poster pdfs would not download and a glossary most useful for kids is buried on a teacher page.
- Subjects: Math: algebra, calculus, equations, fractions, functions, geometry, graphing, measurement, money, numbers, probability, ratio, statistics
- Skills: Self-Direction: academic development, initiative
Thinking & Reasoning: applying information, asking questions, collecting data, part-whole relationships
- Genre: Educational
- Price: Free
- Pricing structure: Free