Math Resources

Below is a list of math resources that I have found that I believe can help strengthen math skills. I have tried my best to align this with the recent Common Core Standards that California has adopted.  You will notice I use www.mathplayground.com a lot as I do feel it is one of the better free math game sites out there.

Multi Topic Resources

Websites

  • Khan Academy – www.khanacademy.com
    • Khan Academy is an amazing free repository of information and videos which started out as just math how to videos but has expanded to cover many other area and topics.  These videos are very common on youtube when you search “How to…” for anything related to math.  If you create an account for a student, it opens up a wide variety of math related challenges along with videos before each to go over the topics.  Solving problems results in the accumulation of different types of badges.  After creating an account, selecting “Learn” in the top left corner and then choosing “Math” and “Arithmetic and Pre-Algebra” will bring you many of the topics we covered this year, including a decent chunk of really simple stuff from years back as well.  At that point you can select the play symbol to watch review/how to videos and the stars to check your understanding with problem sets.  If you’re looking to get a leg up, there definitely are some students who are capable of understanding the material covered in the Algebra section who could watch some of those videos and try the challenges.

Ratios and Proportional Relationships

Websites

  • Triplets – Math Playground http://www.mathplayground.com/Triplets/index.html
    • A quick game where equivalent ratios and fractions are shown and have to be grouped together.  This reinforces the concept of simplifying ratios/fractions and looking for equivalency.
  • Balloon Invaders – Math Playground http://www.mathplayground.com/Balloon_Invaders_Percent.html
    • The player chooses a percent and has to then identify the value of that percent of different numbers.  This is good practice for a concept that is stressed a lot in 6th grade.  IE, finding 20% of a number.  Students should also think about quick ways to find 10% of a number (moving the decimal one place over) when playing this game
  • Ratio Blaster – Math Playground https://www.mathplayground.com/ASB_RatioBlaster.html
    • Another quick game where the player must identify proportional ratios.  There are multiple levels, and the challenge does increase a little, however after playing this game a couple times, the equivalencies will probably all be memorized.
  • Test Your Proportions – http://enjoyflashgames.org/games/game.php?id=1055
    • In this game, the player has to identify the missing number in a set of two proportions from a set of four possible numbers.  This is pretty much just a bunch of math practice problems with no real game or graphic elements, just try to answer as many questions as possible in the time allotted.

Apps

  • Free
    • None that I have found to be worthwhile.

The Number System

Websites

FRACTIONS

  • Decention – Math Playground https://www.mathplayground.com/Decention/index.html
    • This game requires the player to group like numbers represented as percents, decimals and fractions.  For example 5% would be grouped with 0.05 as a decimal and 1/20 as a fraction.  Being able to make these conversions quickly is an important skill for working with and converting these types of numbers to each other and when checking to see if answers make sense.  We’ve played this game in my class in the past.
  • Haunted Fractions – Math Playground https://www.mathplayground.com/HauntedFractions/index.html
    • This game has a small action component that is interspersed with using different numbers to create fractions in order of least to greatest.
  • Fractions-Percents Card Matching – Math Play – https://www.mathplayground.com/matching_fraction_percent.html
    • This is just a simple card matching game where fractions and percents are matched.  This can be helpful for memorizing decimal/percent equivalencies of common fractions
  • Fractions board game – Math-Play http://www.math-play.com/adding-and-subtracting-fractions-game.html
    • A board game where the player must answer fraction addition and subtraction questions to score 80 points by the time they reach the end of the board. Wrong answers result in losing points.  Not the most exciting, but practice nonetheless.

NEGATIVE INTEGERS

  • Number Bonds  – Math Playground https://www.mathplayground.com/number_bonds_integers.html
    • This game is similar to the game Zuma’s Revenge if students have heard of or played that, except instead of making chains of the same color ball, students have to make target numbers by adding positive and negative numbers.  This can serve as quick practice with adding integers and with building number sense around negative numbers.  One shortfall is the only target number is 5, so after a brief while, it gets repetitive.
  • Spider Match Integers – Math Playground https://www.mathplayground.com/ASB_SpiderMatchIntegers.html
    • This game gives a target number and then the player must choose from different positive and negative numbers to make that number as the sum.  The player that makes the most combinations, wins.  This game can be played against the computer, or online with other players.
  • Shoot the Fruit – http://www.sheppardsoftware.com/mathgames/integers/FS_Integer_subtraction.htm
    • The player is given addition and subtraction problems using negative numbers and has to shoot the piece of fruit floating across the screen that gives the correct answer.  Difficulty setting can be adjusted by choosing the range of numbers to use and whether the game is timed or not.
  • Walk The Plank – Adding and Subtracting Integers – Math-Play http://www.math-play.com/integers-game.html
    • This game gives 10 addition or subtraction problems with negative numbers.  The player then chooses from four options to identify the correct answer.  This game is especially helpful for understanding what type of answers are reasonable and even though the problems include larger numbers, using the four options should provide an opportunity to eliminate answers that couldn’t even be close.

Apps (Apple/iOs)

  • Free
    • Coop Fraction (iOS – iPhone or iPad)
      • This game strengthens understanding of what numbers fractions represent.  Different fractions are presented numerically and the player has to identify where on a number line that fraction would fall.  A chicken then lays an egg and if the player had identified close to the right spot, the player gets points and the egg is saved.  This quick game can help with basic number sense of what decimal approximations different fractions are equivalent too.  The game also includes proper and improper fractions.  This does not cover any computation with fractions, but will help with estimation and checking answers.
  • Paid
    • Motion Math (iOS Iphone $1.99/HD version for iPad $2.99)
      • A very popular game where the gyroscopic feature of a device is used and the player must tilt the device to try and get a ball with a fraction, decimal, or percent to land where it should on an unlabeled number line.  This is similar to Coop Fraction, but a bit more interactive.

Expressions and Equations

Websites

  • Shuttle Mission Math – Math Playground https://www.mathplayground.com/shuttle_mission_math/index.html
    • Using algebraic principles and a balance, the player has to determine the weight of different types of martians by solving equations that are shown using symbols.  This might take a few minutes to figure out as the rules aren’t that clear, but once figured out allows some practice of solving one and two step equations along with visual examples.
  • Algebra Puzzle – Math Playground https://www.mathplayground.com/algebra_puzzle.html
    • The player is given a 3×3 grid or 3×4 grid with 3 different symbols.  Each row and column is given a total sum.  Then, the player has to use algebraic reasoning to identify exactly what number each symbol represents.  A good quick practice of applying mental math and algebraic reasoning.
  • Order of Operations Millionaire – Math-Play http://www.math-play.com/Order-of-Operations-Millionaire/order-of-operations-millionaire.html
    • This game can be played with multiple players and each works through solving problems based around the order of operations (the order in which math problems should be solved).  The game is stylized in the fashion of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.

Apps

  • Free
    • 5 Dice: Order of Operations Game (iOS iPad/iPhone)
      • I sometimes play a version of this game in class.  5 dice are rolled and students are given a target number.  Using addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and parenthesis, students try to come up with a way to reach that target.  This is an excellent way to practice mental math and also to reinforce the idea of the order of operations (the order in which math problems are solved).  If you have 2 devices, Bluetooth can be enabled to have two players compete against each other.  Recommended for all ages.
  • Paid
    • DragonBox+ Algebra ($5.99) and DragonBox Algebra 12+ ($9.99) (multiple platforms)
      • This is a visual/symbolic overview of algebra and starts with just a game using symbols and pictures but eventually replaces some of those symbols with numbers and variables.  The first version looks to include solving basic equations using addition/subtraction and multiplication/division.  The 12+ program states that it covers more advanced algebra including negative numbers, parentheses and distributing, factoring and fractions.  The original program is available over many platforms including Mac, PC, and then portably through Windows tablets, iOS and Android.  The 12+ is currently just available on Android and iOS.
  • Hands on Equations  – (Free Trial, Problem sets cost $4.99 to $3.99) (iOS – iPad only)
  • This program helps to visually show what equations actually represent.  The app itself is based off an already existing math curriculum and is a pretty accurate rendition of that.  It’s not too flashy compared to some more modern apps, but it gets the point across.  There is a free trial which goes over the main concept and could be used for an afternoon’s practice.

Geometry

Websites

  • Alien Angles – Math Playground https://www.mathplayground.com/alienangles.html
    • The game gives an angle measurement and the player has to try and create that angle.  This can be useful for building an understanding and mental image of what different angles look like and can assist with checking answers to see if they are reasonable when working with angles.
  • Baseball Geometry (Triangle Area) http://www.factmonster.com/math/knowledgebox/player.html?movie=sfw41510
    • A quick game in which you identify the area of a triangle and then get three swing to hit home runs.  The game aspect of this isn’t that great, but remembering the formula for the area of a triangle is something that students need to be able to do.

Apps (Apple/iOs)

  • None that I’ve found to be worthwhile.

Basic Math Skills (A couple of these revolve around practicing multiplication facts.  By the time students enter middle school, they really should have memorized the multiplication facts they started memorizing in third grade.  Students who do not have these memorized are at a significant disadvantage when it comes to solving problems quickly and in using number sense to identify if answers are reasonable.  These facts can be practiced with old fashioned flash cards or with many games online.  Only students who don’t already know their facts should be spending time with games to practice them.)

Websites

Apps (Apple/iOs)

  • Free
    • Meteor Math (iOS – iPad/iPhone)
      • A simple fact program where the player can select addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.  If students don’t know their multiplication tables yet, programs such as this one can be helpful.

 

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