Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Algebra Attack

 I downloaded a new math app titled Algebra Attack. It is a free game designed by Tarek Karam to help students improve their algebraic skills by thinking outside the box.

So I downloaded it to check it out.  Each problem solved, means the player moves up one level to a slightly harder problem for solving both equations and inequalities.

Where this app disappears is that it provides both the problem and the numbers you may use to solve it.  So there are restrictions before you begin and the choices do not follow the standard rules of solving two step equations.

This may be good because it requires some higher thought processes to solve the equations.  In addition, at the bottom there is a comment on how many steps it should take you to solve.

If you look to the screen at the left, you have the first problem to solve and it does follow the standard rules.  You subtract three and solve the answer.  You have the opportunity to retry if you get stumped.

The counter at the bottom does keep track of the moves you've made.  If you run out of moves, it will tell you and stop the problem so you have to start again.

As you progress up the levels, the problems and choices get much harder so it takes more thought the higher you go.  I have yet to make it past level 6.

This one shows you a good example of a problem which you have to choose whether to add 21 to first or subtract 7.  I added 21 first, then subtracted 7 till it was at minus 21 before adding 21 again.

If you start at level one again or you redo a level, you get different problems so you are not doing the exact same problems over and over.  They problems change.

There is no mechanism that I found to ask for hints to help you get started or even show the solution so you have to persevere until you get it solved. 

I'm not fully sure how I like this but I think it does help students develop number sense so they are able to solve problems using higher thinking skills.

I'd love to hear what you think about the premise behind this app.  Have a great day.