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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Product review: Pyramath

For years I have struggled to get James to learn his math facts. We have tried flashcards, speed drills, computer printouts, and good old fashioned threatening (as in, "Learn these drills or your not going to baseball."). Through whining, sighing, and tears, the math facts are known, but aren't known well. I want my kids to know those facts as well as they know their own names. As a reviewer for the TOS homeschool curriculum group, I was fortunate enough to receive a free pack of Pyramath cards from I See Cards in exchange for my honest review on this blog. I received no other compensation.
Pyramath is a one or two player game that uses math skills. The objective of the game is to complete a pyramid using the math operations of multiplication, addition, subtraction, and division.

We LOVED this game. James would ask to play it several times a day. The time it takes to play a game varies, but I would say the average game lasts about 20 minutes. The cards are laid out in a single line, with a player sitting on each side of the line. Players take turns drawing cards and seeing if they can use them in their line. For example, let's say your line has a 9 and a 3 next to each other. You would need a 6 (9-3), a 3 (9/3), a 2 (9+3= 12), or a 7 (9 x 3=27). As you can see, when the answer to your operations is a two-digit number, you look at the ones place to see if you can play a card. It may sound confusing, and I was intimidated at first, but once you start playing, the rules and strategies become crystal clear.

The first couple times I played I was able to beat James, but after that he beat me every time. He 'rewarded' my effort by letting me go first for a new game, but that didn't help my luck any.

Even Isaac was able to play, although he hasn't had any multiplication or division. We simply modified the rules to where you could only use addition or subtraction for the moves. The game took a little longer to finish, but the pyramid was able to be completed.

James beat me once again!

Besides Pyramath, I See Cards offers other products to designed to promote math success. Fractazmic is a game that reinforces fractions and measurements in a fun and easy way. PrimeBomb offers practice using primes, multiplication, and factoring. The easier and faster that children can recall the math facts, the more confident they will be as they enter higher levels of math education.In addition the math games, the company offers a travel card game called I See Cards that focuses on language and numbers.

I See Cards is a very affordable and fun way to give your child the extra math practice they need. Each game is only $6.95 each, and the company offers a bundle package of all three math games (the travel game is not included), plus a booklet filled with ideas and suggestions to help learning for only $18.95.
Click here for a complete list of their products and prices.

I love this program. I could find no faults in the Pyramath card game. It was fun and challenging. I have already recommended it to several friends and I am consdering getting the other sets as stocking stuffers for Christmas this year.

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