A just-launched Kickstarter project wants to bring interactive math lessons to a device near you. It’s called MatrixMath and already exists in limited release for Windows. But the project founders are asking for $270,000 in crowdsourced funding to bring the software to iPads, Android tablets, the Mac as well as Linux.
The software looks visually engaging and I could easily see it fitting in quite nicely into an elementary school classroom. Watch the video and read excerpts from the project below:
What Is MatrixMath?
The method behind MatrixMath incorporates several different visual, auditory, kinesthetic and cognitive techniques or “approaches” to implant knowledge in the mind permanently. Knowledge is discovered, rather than given, which rewards students’ curiosity and efforts with a deep sense of accomplishment and gratification.
All students are typically fast-tracked by MatrixMath and improve their attitude towards the subject. Students with special education needs receive an advantage over traditional systems as the software tracks performance and uses several techniques to improve learning performance.
Who Should Use It?
MatrixMath K-4 is suitable for most students above 3 years and some exceptionally gifted 2 year olds. There is no upper age limit.
The software identifies gaps in student’s knowledge and addresses them specifically or gives students a refresher on content they’ve learned but aren’t fluent in.
Reading is not required for most activities, most instructions are spoken or the screens are intuitive enough for students to go straight to solving the tasks they are presented with.
Teaching is self-paced and student’s progress is saved between learning sessions. If we succeed in passing the first “long shot” milestone (see below) we will include progress charting in our software.
How Does It Work?
In “assisted mode” keywords have color backgrounds matching their target areas; the areas represent a map of operations and one glimpse is enough to remember what color was in the top left of that map; textures of overlapping areas help link them together. You can easily remember the location of each color.
After “assisted mode” comes “independent mode” where the color backgrounds of keywords are removed. The computer determines what screen is most suitable based on student’s performance history.
When students master “independent mode” they are offered an opportunity to complete the activity in “timed mode” where they are given just a few seconds per keyword.
The computer keeps track of student’s performance and could automatically detect some special needs and adjust so they are better met: color scheme can change if performance with some colors doesn’t match that of other colors; timing and sizing of important elements can be adjusted.