Math can be a difficult subject. It's one of those subjects that comes easy to some, but it difficult for most. A lot of math needs to be memorized, so that it will make doing it much easier at a later date. Memorizing math facts is difficult for those students who need more than just numbers to remember. Our middle son is that way. He has a difficult time memorizing random things. That is why he has thoroughly enjoyed the Online Times Alive subscription from City Creek Press, Inc. We were able to download the Times Alive App which made this even better!
Times Alive gives children a "hook" to hold on to in order to remember these, "sometimes", abstract facts. What do I mean by a "hook". In the teaching world, it is when you talk to the students about some piece of information that they already know, in order to add in new information. For example, when I taught our boys how to write in cursive, I reminded them of how to write in print and then went from there. That gives them something to hold on to in order to grasp the new information better.
Times Alive gives the children multiple ways to learn each times table. There is a story, a song, guessing game, review of other problems that they've done, and fill in the answers. Some are with pictures and some are without. I really like this. They teach the children by using pictures at first, but then slowly and systematically reduce the pictures, so the child has to solve the problem without the picture hook. Great teaching technique! Give a hook, teach with the hook, and then when the hook isn't needed, have the children do the new skill without it. Fantastic!
There is some pretty imaginative thinking going on in this book as well. They play with words to make the story. I took some screenshots of 6x6 so that you can get an idea of what I'm talking about.
The multiplication fact is introduced first in a story. This one happens to be 6x6=36. It is about twin 6s (6x6) which are thirsty (36). Then, a song is sung while telling the story.
Next, comes where the child solves that math problem only.
Then, they add in some of the other facts with pictures that have already been learned as a refresher.
Lastly, the child is to solve the math problems without the pictures.
We really liked that there is a Times Alive App on the iPad. That made it so convenient and easy to use. We didn't have to start up the computer in order to play. He would just set his timer and away he went.
Here is what our 10 year old thought:
I think it is a great program because it wasn't like I was doing math, but like I was playing a game. I liked the stories that they had. I think that the people who made this know that kids could have a lot more fun with math. My favorite story is the 6x6 story because it was the first one that I heard. I feel like I've memorized the times tables now. It's easier to remember because they put a story behind it instead of just the math problem.
I have to be honest. I usually get complaints and whines when he has to do math. Not so with Online Times Alive by City Creek Press, Inc. He was always willing to work on it when he was supposed to. He liked going through it and he would come tell me when he learned a new fact. That's what makes this so great! It gives children the confidence they need in order to memorize these facts.
Go and see what the other reviewers thought about it!
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