★★★ Open House ★★★
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DragonBox Numbers
© 2015 WeWantToKnow AS

CTR Review
Rating: 96%
Ease of Use
Design Features
Reviewed using the Standard Rubric
For ages 4-9
For grades P, K, 1, 2, 3, 4
$7.99, iPad, iPhone, Android
Teaches: comparing quantities, addition, subtraction, measuring, interpreting data, counting, Mathematics
Tagged for: All Time Best, Classic, Android, Summer Learning, Back to School, Money, Montessori, Early Math, Math, Holiday, WOSU, Teacher Tools, ECE
2/7/2017 See DragonBox Big Numbers.

Early math teachers have been dreaming of an app like this for decades. Imagine a magical set of living color coded unit blocks (like Cuisenaire Rods) that you can slice into parts (for subtraction) or feed to one another (for addition). Mix in a familiar Angry Birds style leveling system, a "Cut the Rope" game mechanic for subtracting, a bit of finger painting for numeral recognition, and then use money (with place value application) to unlock the puzzles, and you have the year's all time best early math pedagogy experience. There are a few limits. You can't turn off the background music, and you're limited to just four player profiles. These aren't deal breakers, however. A child's progress is saved automatically, and this app makes no attempt to sell or harvest information -- making it a viable classroom or library choice. At the core of this app are the ten animated blocks, called Nooms. Each comes with set of eyes and is color coded and sized according to the numeral. They can be freely stacked, sliced, tossed, combined, sorted and compared. As you play, you start discovering the relationship between number, numeral and length; all while a clear narrator describes the relationships. There are three modes: Sandbox for free exploration; Puzzle with 250 challenges that are unlocked with money; and Ladder where you are challenged to build larger numbers. The active/discovery pedagogy is the same that is employed in the other DragonBox apps. There are no quizzes, for example, and children always drive the activity. The app comes from a Norway-based studio, from the creators of DragonBox Algebra, and it's well worth the $8 download for home or classroom use. See also Math Wizard Kids.
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