Sunday, June 29, 2014

Fraction division by Braining camp

This is the other free app offered by Braining Camp.  It has the lesson, questions, manipulative and challenge or assessment just like the area app.  The one thing this app offers that the other one does not is the use of badges.  The student can earn up to thee badges for each section.  Although most high school students should be solid in their division of fractions, many of my students are not and I see this being used as either a scaffolding step or for remediation. 

I have noticed that many of my students have learned the algorithms to divide fractions but they do knot always understand the concept so this app helps students with understanding why they are dividing fractions the way they do.  I plan to recommend this app to the 5th and 6 the grade teachers for use in their classrooms.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Area app

I found this nice app called Area of Figures by Braining camp.  It is a great app to help students review or learn to find the area of rectangles, parallelograms, triangles, and circles.

Each topic comes with four sections.  The first is a lesson to introduce the material which is a nice lesson.  The Manipulative section allows the students to explore area for the shape.  The questions is simply a quiz to help the student discover how much they really understand of the material.  Finally there is a quiz section that has four levels.  The levels are actually four ways to check student knowledge and the student is unable to move on until the correct answer is entered.  I like the way this is designed and I plan to use it in my geometry class this next year.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Trig Help

This is a nice little app that uses a unit circle to a how the triangle the sin, cos, and tan values are based on.  You input the degree measurement ant it gives you the decimal values for sin, cos, and tan.  Further more, it shows the input value in bothe degrees and rads.

There is also the sector that allows you to find the inverse values and the values are given in a value plus 360 degrees.  Then there is a solver page that I am still figuring out how to use and a reference page of formulas.  This makes a nice reference app for trig students.  The only real gripe I have with this app is the apparent lack of instructions on using the app.  I do not know if I missed them or there are none.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014


This is a nice app filled with practice problems for solving one step equations using addition, subtraction,  multiplication, division, or mixed.  There are three levels for easy, medium or hard.
All that means is the constant increases in value based on easy, medium, or hard.  So for the game itself.  About half the grid are equations, while the other half  are answers.  The.object is to match the equation with the correct answer.  Although there are no explanations when the problem is missed, the two squares only flip and reshot the problem and answer.  The two "cards" only disappear if they are correctly matched.  I tried to take a picture since I am using my iPad but couldn't figure out how to import it.  I see this as being a good app for student practice of one step equations.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Hot potato algebra

This is a nice little app that helps students practice solving multiple step equations with variables on both sides.  It has several problems for students to practice but if a student misses the problem, it does not explain how to solve it.  The app only gives answers if a student misses it so it would be good for general practice or review for students who are comfortable with the process.  I would not use it with students who are just learning because it does no show the steps.
It also allows you to try their prime number app before you buy it.  This has you break down various numbers using prime numbers and you are expected to break the numbers down completely.  I think this would be useful in conjunction with another app such as prime smash as a formative assessment.
I think it is useful for students to work with apps that explain all the steps but also just show the correct answers so they can see how much they really understand and can do.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Keynote animation

At the training I just completed, I learned how to make animation using keynote.  It was awesome.  Although, I actually learned to do it for my iBooks, I realized I can also project it onto my Smartboard in my classroom so I can have them do double duty.  I never realized you could do it.  You do not use the magic move transition, instead you use the link to connect one slide to the next and use automatic.  It was something I learned at the ibook hack and this morning while deciding what books I need to really get done by the time school starts and I realized I can use many of the videos and animations that I put in the book in my class so I don't have to look for a video that will show exactly what I want the kids to learn.  So things can be used more than once.  I am getting ready to head out to the airport so I didn't have time to make a movie out of it.  Instead I chose the first slide and the last slide to show where it starts and where it finishes.  I'll try to make it into a video and post the finished video maybe sunday.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Green Screen by Do Ink

This is an app that provides a background for your video like a green screen.  It is minimal cost app but it comes highly recommended at the training session I am at.  I was wondering how I might use it in my math classes and I think I might have figured out how to do it.  Usually green screens are used in video classes, etc. but I got to thinking why not use it as background to videos I am using for the real life use of math part of the videos I am putting into my iBooks.
For triangles, I could put up a background of roof trusses for triangles and point out the vertex, the fact that it is an isosceles triangle by showing the two sides.  Or maybe the leaning tower of Piza to show a cylinder.  Make it more of a cross curricular lesson.  When I get something like this done later in the summer, I need to give an update and put the video on the blog.
In regard to the iBook Author, I have got almost one full chapter done for a book on triangles.  I learned how to animate a presentation so that I could make a short presentation on showing how the triangle inequality theorem works and why the numbers are important.  I am proud of everything I have learned.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Using geometry pad to help show certain mathematical ideas.

Today while attending the ibookhack I figured out how to use geometry pad free to show students that the median and perpendicular bisecter always divide the opposite side regardless of where the vertex.  I can create a triangle using the triangle maker, not any of the specific triangles, just the general one.  Then I choose the line segment and draw it is it is either the median (one end is longer than the triangle) or the perpendicular bisector (longer than both sides). I then placed a finger on the top vertex of the triangle and slide it back and forth changing the type of triangle but the median or perpendicular bisector remains the same.  I can use my iPod to record the movement, e-mail the video to myself, import it into iMovie, add sound and I have a short video to post or use in an iBook.  I realize I could use reflector but I do not always have access to wireless signals so this is a way I can do what I want.
I got the video done and I hope I manage to post it properly.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Card clutter and other things.

I found a math app called card clutter which has students order numbers from smallest to largest.  There are 14 levels going from natural numbers to square root.  Each level is timed and if you choose a number that is not the correct one, the card will not slide away and a certain amount of time is penalized.  I have high school students who have difficulty ordering numbers once they move to negative numbers, decimals and fractions.  I am impressed with this.
I completed my first day at an iBook hack and it was awesome.  One of the most important things I came away with is a search engine to search for images, music, etc that can be used in presentations without violating copyright.  The site is at and I will be sharing this information with others at the school I teach at.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

I book author

I have not posted much in the past few days for two reasons.  First, I got a brand new iPad and I am still trying to download several apps including keynote numbers, etc.  second,I have also been traveling and I stopped through my parents who are still using a dial up and the speed is way too slow.
So now I am in Michigan to participate in an I book hack so that I can learn more about creating interactive books for my math classes.  I can hardly wait.  This will make me the expert at school and I will be teaching others how to create the books.  I already see some possibilities for my classroom.

Friday, June 6, 2014

GCSE math by Learners cloud

This is a math study app for a student to prepare for a test in the UK.  This app was created by a different company than the one from yesterday.  This is also the lite version but it is more limited and only offers one set of 10 questions.  About half of the questions do not require you to type in anything. You are expected to work. On paper and then check your answer and is not counted in the final score.  The other questions do require you to input the answer so the program will let you know if itis correct and include it in the over all score.  I prefer the free version made by the other company as it offers more.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

GCSE math: geometry revision lite

This is an app designed to help students prepare for exams in the Yk.  The lite version has only the first level of each topic available to use.  If you want any of the higher levels then you need to purchase the full package.  This app includes a test for the Pythagorean theorem in the trig section.  
Each section has 10 questions and the student has to answer all 10 questions before they find out their score.  At the end of the test, the app displays their final score, the time it took for them to take the quiz, the number right and wrong and the number of problems skipped.  

The above photo show how the app explains the correct answer for a missed problem.  The photo below shows the sceen the student sees when they are done with the quiz.

A student can then click on the question they got wrong to find out the correct answer and how to do it correctly.  You can retake the test but the questions are the same in this version of the app but they are in a different order.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Using gamification to learn.

I was over at the farmers market today and my daughters boyfriend was discussing how many skills the average game teaches the player.  This set me off wondering if there is an app out there that would allow students to create a game that would be focused on a specific math topic.  I keep thinking that I'd like make a menu for final projects every quarter and one of the choices would be allowing students to create a game using the iPad.  I found one app called GamePress that allows students to create games without knowing how to code.  It as a 4.5 star rating and has a free version that I am currently downloading to play with in a couple of days.
I know there are a couple websites where I could have students do this but I have to find out if these sites work with the iPad and on the iPad.  There is nothing worse than finding a website that you think works and it does to a certain point and not past that.
I see a lot of possibilities using it in my math classes next year but I need to figure out how to use the app before then so I can answer student questions.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

IXL app

I started playing with the IXL app last night.  It allows you to use the materials as a guest but there is a daily limit on how many problems can be done.  It has practice problems for grades K to Algebra II.  I like it because it has the problem, allows the student to work it out and enter the answer.  If the student is wrong, then the program shows the student what the answer should be and how to get it.  It reviews the process and actually shows the math involved.  I like that because students get immediate feedback and do not have to wait.  The app is free but if you want unlimited access to IXL  then you need to pay a yearly fee.  Since I have 5 classes, I am going to have to make sure I do not assign more than two classes per day on it so that I do not use up the allowed amount of free problems per day.
I like that it has a variety of topics for each class and has Algebra I, Algebra II and Geometry.
I've found it is often hard to find things for High school math that are low cost or free.  I like this and plan to integrate it into my classroom.  It will help the students monitor their learning as long as they actually read the explanations.