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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Math Facts Now! Review


Have you ever wished you could give your child the math drills they required without killing a whole forest printing out daily worksheets OR sending your child into tears at the idea of more math problems?  Well thanks to Math Facts NOW!, you can.

Math Facts NOW! is a computer program that can be purchased on CD or as a download that allows you to customize math drills for your child/children.  You can determine which operation they drill-addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division.  Then, you decide which factors between 1 and 12 you want them to work on, how long they should have for each problem, how many times they have to type correctly any problems they miss (either because of a wrong answer or because of not meeting your time limit), and how many problem they need to do correctly to finish the drill.  You can also designate a "reward" of your choosing if they get the problems right.  Then, Math Facts NOW! takes your parameters and designs a computerized drill for them to do.  It's that simple.

The pros: I like how customizable this is.  I can do just a few problems a day for my youngest, and more for my eldest.  I like that you can get a printable progress report after each drill telling how they did and even how long it took them on average to answer each problem.  But most of all, I like that it is just a math drill program.  There are no games, no flashy graphics, no animation....just a few simply questions to answer.  And even my more techno driven child appreciated the simplicity too.

The cons:  I wish it was a little more customizable.  I'd like to chose both the factors they work with, not just one.  For example:  My littlest is working on very basic addition.  She can add anything factoring up to five, but struggles with things above that.  With the way Math Facts NOW! currently works, even the "1" factors would go all the way from 1+1 to 1+12.  I'd love to be able to just have it do 1+1 to 1+4 for now.  And she could add 3+2, but not 3+11.  So I guess I'd like to see the ability to limit both factors and not just one.  I'd also like to have some sort of password control on the creating a worksheet function, as my 13 year old soon started creating his own that were less challenging than what I made for him.  I also wish that the correct answers to incorrect questions could be typed just once, or even not at all for little ones who have problems with entering the correct spacing between numbers and holding down the shift to press the plus sign. (Correct number sentences must be entered like this: 1 + 11 = 12, with spaces after each component of the sentence.)

The bottom line:  Despite the cons above, I really like Math Facts NOW!  It's easy to use, my kids don't fight me at all about doing it, and it provides good review and drill work with the use of paper.  The cons really are suggestions that I'd love to see them address to make the product even better.  At $15.95 for the downloadable version, the price is reasonable given that you can use it for all your students.  It has definitely improved my eldest child's speed and accuracy with his multiplication tables and we plan to continue using it daily.

To see more about Math Facts NOW! and even check out their FREE trial offer, go HERE.  To see what other members of the TOS Crew thought, go HERE.

Legal Disclaimer:  As a member of the TOS Crew, I received a downloaded version of this software for the purpose of giving my review.  That download was the only compensation I received.
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