When it comes to building math mastery, it’s easy to find app focused on math fluency; app stores are overflowing with them. But teachers looking for tools that build conceptual understanding are often left wanting. These tools can be tough to find.
But not anymore. Below are 10 apps I use with my students. These apps let students practice number concepts such as one-to-one correspondence, regrouping, and even multiplication and division in developmentally appropriate ways. Many times these are more effective than physical manipulatives. Digital manipulatives can be broken apart, put back together and moved around in ways that are not possible with bags full of Base 10 Blocks and counters. The “aha” moments captured with these apps make lasting impressions on a child’s mind, building a strong mathematical basis. Even better, teachers who have access to only one device can take advantage of these apps by using an Apple TV or reflecting software.
Here they are:
Basic number concepts
- Quick Math Jr. by Shiny Things is a game for students beginning to grasp counting and number recognition. It allows for multiple student accounts.
- 10 Fingers + by Marbotic is a customizable app for teacher-led lessons and center activities. Students use their fingers and objects on the screen to practice one-to-one correspondence, number recognition, and basic addition concepts.
- Montessori Numberland by Edoki Academy applies Maria Montessori’s teachings to number mastery. Students practice one-to-one correspondence and number recognition in a straightforward yet entertaining way.
Addition and subtraction with regrouping
- Montessori Add and Subtract Large Numbers by Edoki Academy demonstrates how and why regrouping works – and does it in a way that students grasp and understand. Be on the lookout for “aha” moments—there will be plenty.
- MegaPro Calculator 5000 by Chris Ternoey lets students watch as the physical representations of numbers change as they are added or subtracted.
- Llama Drama: Lumio Multiplication by Lighthouse Learning uses llamas to conceptualize multiplication arrays. Students love this fun app!
- Montessori Multiplication by Edoki Academy uses Montessori tools to guide students step-by-step through the concepts of multiplication.
- Understanding Math Times Table by app media UG is a versatile app that covers every concept of multiplication and covers it well—arrays, repeated addition, and even division. If your students need conceptual practice, then this is the app for you!
- Dynamic Division by MontessoriTech lets students learn about division using virtual beads. Students divide the beads into the assigned number of groups to help solve the problem.
- Division Board by Edoki Academy allows students have fun as they divide gold greedy pirates (with funny accents). Laughter is guaranteed!
Don’t leave your students’ understanding of basic number concepts teetering on a weak foundation–take advantage of these amazingly, appropriate apps. Have fun!
Katie Chirhart is a National Board Certified Teacher and has been teaching for sixteen years. Recently, she finished her Campus Technology Certification, has been named a “20 to Watch” Leader in Educational Technology by the NSBA, and Elementary Teacher of the Year by LACUE. Currently, she teaches in an elementary iPad Lab. She enjoys working with teachers far and wide, sharing the wonders of technology through her frequent blog posts and by leading professional development sessions. Her current job is a dream come true.
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