MathSmart: First Grade fails as a learning tool

Sep 18, 2009
Education

When I was a kid, my mother bought a novelty spanking paddle at a carnival in Texas. She hung this menace on a hook in the kitchen and only had to nod in its direction to keep my brothers and me in line. That paddle disappeared long ago, but now that I’m a father, I […]

When I was a kid, my mother bought a novelty spanking paddle at a carnival in Texas. She hung this menace on a hook in the kitchen and only had to nod in its direction to keep my brothers and me in line. That paddle disappeared long ago, but now that I’m a father, I think I’ll just threaten my child with MathSmart: First Grade.

It’s a shame then that this app is a bore. I’d love to present my child with an interactive learning tool for something as scary as math, but MathSmart: First Grade isn’t that tool.

MathSmart: First Grade doesn’t teach a thing. It quizzes. Sadly, the results of the quizzes are too vague and subjective to be of any use. The developer must be from the self-esteem school of assessment, because after 100 questions, My Detailed Report Card page rated me “Good” in all four subject areas (Addition, Subtraction, Counting, and Advanced), including the 23 subtraction questions I answered incorrectly on purpose.

Also, there’s no way to tell which questions are answered incorrectly or how many attempts a student takes to get the right answer. What kind of details does this detailed report card think it’s giving?

Speaking of report cards, here’s one for MathSmart: First Grade—fail.

The app offers no form of instruction, its endless quiz is boring, the Detailed Report Card lacks details, and the only kind of utility I expect to get from the thing is good behavior from first graders threatened with the promise of having to use it.

READ  Score High on Your SATs With Flying Colours With UWorld SAT Qbank
Search for more

Home Apps Games