Sunday, August 30, 2009

Barnum Software / The Quarter Mile Math: A TOS Homeschool Crew Review

The teachers of one of my children keep telling us that this child needs more practice in multiplication facts. Knowing multiplication facts is important for completing higher level work quickly (and accurately). That child hates to sit down for a drill with mom or dad, too. Barnum Software has developed The Quarter Mile Math to help families with the issue of practicing math.

The Quarter Mile Math is math practice software that covers kindergarten through ninth grade (pre-algebra) in a format that sets up the student as either a race car on a race course or a riderless horse in a meadow, where the student races himself to try to improve his own time and beat himself as he plays the software again and again.

We received the Deluxe Levels 1, 2 and 3 Bundle on CD, and it was a quick and easy download. In just a few clicks, I had one student on the track in a race car.

I sat my princess who has developmental delays down in front of the computer to see what she and I could do with The Quarter Mile Math. Her skills are so skattered, I was not sure if we could even begin. Thumbs up! The software has a starting point of simply entering the characters that pop up on the screen, and moves up from there.

The Quarter Mile Math's Christopher Wright explains that "While we have two racing options—cars and horses—we know that some families are sensitive to the issue of horse racing. This might be because of the association with gambling. Because of this, horses in the Quarter Mile Math don’t have jockeys and they race on a grassy meadow. (Of course, the likelihood of getting wild horses to run in a straight line in a meadow is very low, but you get the idea!) We refer to them as “riderless horses” and avoid using phrases like 'horse race' or 'race horse.'"

Our family members are all at different math levels, so a tournament is a little out of our league at the moment. However, for families or groups with members who are ready and interested, Wright also let the Crew know that "it’s easy to do tournaments using the Deluxe version. But users of the Standard version can do tournaments, too. They can either take turns racing on a single computer and compare their rankings based on top-five average scores, or they can compete on different computers and simply compare scores."

Spend some time on The Quarter Mile Math web site. Read about the research and successes. A free demo is available there. If you're concerned about state standards, the company offers a link to them here, alongside corresponding levels of the software program.

A subscription is just $2.95 per family per month or $19.95 per family per year, or $34.95 per family for two years. The Quarter Mile Math has a one-time CD purchase option, too, with comparison information here.

The Quarter Mile Math sends e-newsletters to subscribers and purchasers, offering tips and info that are quite helpful. I can tell you that I made the mistake of pushing children to stay and race too long at one sitting -- shorter sessions more frequently are better. And I'll tell you that two of my children, one more than the other, do NOT like the pressure to race themselves, and we will have to work to ignore the race in order to go for accurate answers. They need to learn that the race part of the program is simply to track progress over time, and that will come with experience.

I look forward to my children using The Quarter Mile Math more often now that our summer camps and traveling is over.

SAVE FIVE DOLLARS: Use the referral Code 7J7Y7 for $5 off any product--Standard or Deluxe. There is a place to input this code on the order forms. This Referral Code is good until September 30.

For the reviews of my Crewmates about The Quarter Mile Math, go HERE.

1 comment:

Bronwyn said...

Thank you to you and your daughter for your review of program. It sounds like something my son would really like.

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