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Manipulatives are an essential component of elementary math, allowing kids to physically arrange real-world objects in order to understand fundamental math concepts. In First Grade Kids Math, developers attempt to recreate this engaging approach to math with mini games that break down place value, addition, subtraction, fractions and more with the tap of a finger.
Here, manipulatives are represented as virtual ten “rods” and pies, and are used to help children understand these tricky concepts. Players must pop bubbles when they find the right answer, and feed a cute monkey a pie to represent parts of a whole. First grade math class is typically full of chatter, block stacking and crayon numbers, all of which contribute to keeping kids engaged. However, these exciting elements don’t translate to smart devices here. The animations are simple, the color palette muted, and this app even lacks sound effects. Furthermore, the app lacks complementary explanations that direct users to the right answer, forcing adults to sit down and explain what’s happening onscreen.
For hands-on parents and teachers, this tool can be a fun study addition—but not as a stand-alone product. Buy the full version and you’ll expand the limited mini game availability in the lite version to over 400 exercises.
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