Algebra Touch, by Regular Berry Software LLC, is available for the iPad, the iPod touch, and the iPhone.
It starts out with basic pre-algebra concepts and advances to more difficult concepts. A step by step explanation is followed with a practice set for each module. The modules include: addition of like terms, like and unlike terms, negatives, multiplication, order of operations, pairs, replacement, prime numbers, substitution, crossing out, division, isolating variables, basic equations, distribution of factors, factoring out, and complex equations. It takes a few repetitions to understand how the app works, but after that, the process becomes a lot easier. Although each module builds on the previous one, it is very easy to go back and review an earlier module.
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This app is great for a number of reasons. First, it allows the student to practice each concept without having to perform extensive calculations. It’s not that calculations aren’t important; they certainly are, but it’s too hard to learn a new concept if you’re struggling with calculating large numbers at the same time. It’s much better to get familiar with the steps first, and then add the calculations later. Second, this app has some creative features like “touch factoring” and “swipe distribution”. It’s hard to explain, but these features are well-illustrated in the explanation modules. Third, once students understand the process, they are able to work faster and their confidence improves.
This app is perfect for the person who needs a slow, step by step explanation of the basics of pre-algebra and algebra. Some of the reviews for Algebra Touch have claimed it was too easy, but for a child who is struggling to learn algebra, it is exactly the right level of difficulty. Math tutors will find this app highly beneficial. It is also recommended for parents who wish to brush up on their own algebra skills and college students who want to improve their performance on math proficiency tests. Fun Educational Apps strongly recommends this app and awards it a Top Pick.
Algebra Touch is available for download via the iTunes App Store - Universal App
Julie Peterson is a speech/language pathologist (SLP) currently working in a school setting, serving children with special needs ages 6-14.
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