Bottom Line: Beyond Cats! Grade 1 Math Standards - Practice Common Core Math for 1st Graders is designed to give your child hours of practice on his math skills by sneaking it in in game form. By answering a series of multiple choice questions, your little learner completes puzzles and earns points. Multiple accounts can be set up for families or classrooms. All of the skills are designed to adhere to Common Core standards.
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We are only a couple of weeks into summer vacation here, and already I am struggling with getting my son to do anything that smells the least bit academic. So, I’m doing my best to sneak things in on him. With my kiddo, anything in app form is always preferable.
Beyond Cats! Grade 1 Math Standards - Practice Common Core Math for 1st Graders by Maypop Designs gives your child a ton of practice on his math skills while still being engaging enough to be considered a game. Each skill is presented as a set of nine multiple choice questions. With each correct answer, the user earns a piece to complete a puzzle. If a wrong answer is given, then the puzzle piece will be incorrect. But don’t worry — your child can just tap that puzzle piece to reset the question and have the chance to get the right answer. Once all nine questions are answered correctly, nine points are awarded. These points accumulate until the user is ready to cash them in to collect pictures of plants from around the world.
As each new skill is presented, the user is given a grid of nine answers; each will be the correct answer to one of the nine questions that are to follow. Also, for each game set, there is an example shown to the left so that the user will have no confusion about what is being asked of him or her. The answers are chosen from the nine options given (or technically from the remaining ones after each previous question is answered). If your little learner is unsure of an answer along the way, he can periodically check his work by looking at the puzzle to see if the pieces are lining up correctly.
So far we’ve covered Sequencing, Addition/Subtraction, Multiplication/Division, Shape Recognition, Unit Measurement . . . and that’s barely touching on all the things this app offers. We’ve been asked to choose the correct object based on position, orientation, and size. We’ve used our greater than/less than skills. We really are reviewing many of the skills that my son covered during his first grade year.
Multiple accounts can be set up so that parents or teachers can track multiple children. The skills appear to progress in difficulty as you go along. Parents/teachers can choose to start all of the skills over from the beginning if needed, or to skip ahead for kids that need more challenge.
What I liked:
- The volume and variety of math skills covered is great. It truly is enough content to keep a child busy for hours if you choose.
- Even though it is math practice, it isn’t dull.
- I feel like having the nine answers progressively disappear as they are used takes some of the difficulty away by diluting the answer pool. If the same nine answers were shown each time, without disappearing, some of the challenge would still remain.
- The addition of an option to hear verbal instructions would be nice. My younger child is showing a real passion for math, but is not yet reading. There were occasions that, being unable to read, she misinterpreted the visual instructions.
- While we love the ability to accumulate points to spend, I would have liked for the end prizes to perhaps have a little more variety than to just buy pictures of plants around the world. Both of my kids had very little interest in that.
I’m giving Beyond Cats! Grade 1 Math Standards - Practice Common Core Math for 1st Graders a solid 4-star rating. It is a great app for math practice, but there is some room for improvement, and I hope the developers will take note of that with their next update.
Kelli is regretting telling her children that she could ever do the splits. Because it is painfully obvious that she now cannot. SmartAppsForKids.com was paid a priority review fee to complete this review in an expedited manner.