As we continue to hear the rumbles of the Common Core Standards wouldn’t it be nice to have an app that includes the action and skills built into the app and match the relevant Common Core Topic. Slate Math for Kids by Slate Science -FREE-achieves this concept using an easy interface and can easily be incorporated into a daily lesson plan.
The app has 8 chapters from Counting to Problem Solving. Within each chapter there are 1- 8 activities for each chapter .
Student begin by choosing an avatar. Once they have their avatar set the activities begin. Instead of a general counting exercise the child chooses a black and white postcard from a country. The card chosen is evolves into a color card and an activity is presented. An example many be writing digits on the Berlin Wall in Germany. Now you have students questioning you about the Berlin Wall which crosses the curriculum to history . Another nice feature is the ability to have audio when interpreting word problems. Just press the question mark in the upper right corner and listen to the question. If you want to hear the Common Core Topic choose the picture of the adult and child in the upper left corner. For those children who are distracted by sound choose the mute button in the upper left corner. Another nice feature that I discuss when looking a the “perfect app” is what do you do when the child answers the question incorrectly? Slate Math just shakes the question back and forth as a cue letting you know the answer is incorrect and allowing the child to self correct him/herself.
Slate Math is definitely challenging and for those students who have special needs may benefit using this app in second- third grade as there are some activities that are more challenging than traditional Kindergarten and First grade math. The beauty of the app is its artwork and use of interactivity to engage the child.
As far as improvements I would like to see more activities for each chapter as this can really take a child through a year of math while crossing the curriculum. I would also like to see data tracking as this would help teachers when preparing students for standardized tests.
As a special education teacher it meets all of the modalities a child needs and helps to differentiate instruction and meet IEP Goals.
IEP Goals: The student will verbally solve addition facts up to :number.
The student will verbally solve subtraction facts up to :number