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Sumdog: Fun Math Practice Games

What it is: Sumdog math is a site with an outstanding collection of math games covering over 100 numeracy topics and split into 10 levels.  The games are free to play for home and school math practice.  Sumdog games can be used as an engaging anticipatory set for mental math, or to reinforce a specific math topic.  The games can be played individually or in multi-player mode.  Teachers can create school accounts and upload classes to the program.  For a low-cost school subscription you can also have detailed class and student reports, set up class competitions, and set a minimum level for a class.  The free features of this site are more than enough to get your class having fun interacting with math.  With 100 numeracy topics, you are bound to find games to help your students practice exactly the skill they are working on.  Topics range from ordering numbers, addition, subtraction, doubling, rounding, multiplication, and division, to positive and negative numbers, advanced number sequences, prime numbers, and adding and subtracting negative numbers.  Each game asks targeted questions based on the level chosen, provides immediate feedback to students based on their answers, allows students to review any questions they got wrong and lasts about a minute.  Multi-player games let students compete against their class or students online worldwide, and provide an option for playing solo or against the computer.  Students can play athletics where they sprint against players worldwide to get the most questions correct; Street Racer where they are head to head in a car race against other players to cross the finish line first, Alien Invaders where students compete against another player to see who can survive the longest against alien invasion; Penalty Shootout where students compete against another player in a soccer penalty shootout of math questions; Tennis Tie-break where students trade volleys with a real opponent; Talent Show where they answer questions correctly to please judges in a talent show (think American Idol); or Canal Clear Up where students clean up trash from a canal by matching questions to answers. How to integrate Sumdog into your curriculum: Sumdog is a fun way for your students to practice mental math.  The 60 second time limit of each game makes it a great math center activity.  If you have one or two computers in your classroom, students can sign into their account, choose their level and practice mental math for 60 seconds; when they are finished with the game, the next student can rotate into the center.  In a computer lab or 1-to-1 classroom setting, students can save and track their progress as they practice with a variety of games.  Sumdog is a welcome break from timed worksheet exercises and flash cards.  It lets students compete with kids around the world in a safe environment while helping them with faster number recall. Tips: Don’t forget to tell parents about Sumdog, they are always looking for new ways to help their kids with math fact practice. Please leave a comment and share how you are using Sumdog in your classroom! Looks like you have entered a product ID in the shortcode that doesn't exist. Please check your product ID and the shortcode again!Price: $

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NASA’s 50th Anniversary Flash Feature-best website ever!

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Evaluate, Interactive Whiteboard, Knowledge (remember), Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Social Studies, Teacher Resources, Understand (describe, explain), Websites | Posted on 19-04-2011

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Have I mentioned lately that I have the most AWESOME readers?  No?  Well it is true, you all are awesome and you keep me going even when I am running on low.  Thank you for that!  I’m currently working on starting a school (actually 3) in the next 2 years.  This is proving to be an exciting and, oh yeah, exhausting task.  Then I get encouraging emails and site suggestions from you all and it puts some major pep back in my step.  Thank you!  This website is one such recommendation.  You know you are a true geek when getting a cool website in your inbox revives you :)  Thank you Ryan!

What it is: NASA’s 50th Anniversary Flash feature is a website that is absolutely not to be missed.  Seriously, it won’t even hurt my feelings if you skip reading my post and just head right on over to dig in and check it out yourselves!  This interactive timeline highlights each decade in our space program from 1950 to 2000.  Until we get time travel sorted out, this is a pretty good substitute! The site encourages exploration and discovery as students move decade by decade through the site.  I love that this site goes so far beyond just space exploration.  While students explore, they will hear music representing each decade, see animations, listen to virtual radio broadcasts of actual news headlines (including NASA news and other news from the decade), original video, listen to speeches of the decade and even launch rockets.  I can’t tell you how happy it made me to hear Johnny Cash mixed in as I was playing on this site (in the upper left corner of the site you will be able to change songs on the jukebox, record, tape, CD or mp3 player).  First thing I heard when I clicked on the 80′s “Tonight on Dallas find out who shot J.R.”. *LOVE THIS SITE!*  This blog post took me about 2 hours because I got sucked right into exploring and playing.  The site reminds me of Epcot’s Tomorrow Land, complete with robot guide.  This is what online learning should look like, when I close my eyes and dream, this is the experience I imagine for kids.  Can you imagine if there was a site like this for history? How cool would that be?!

How to integrate NASA’s 50th Anniversary Flash Feature into the classroom: This is one of those sites that you could let kids loose on just for exploration.  Without any guidance from you they will learn plenty!  Ideally kids would explore this site in partners or on their own in a one to one computer lab setting.  If each student has a computer, headphones will be a necessity.  If individual exploration just isn’t in the cards, visit the site as a class with an interactive whiteboard or projector-connected computers.  Invite students up to the computer (whiteboard) to take turns guiding the class.  The site has plenty of interactive content to give each student a chance at the computer (whiteboard).  Unless you have a good chunk of time dedicated to the site, this is one that I would stretch out over a week.  Each day students can explore a new decade.

The space exploration component of this site is amazing and could keep everyone plenty busy with learning.  With older students, discuss what the music of the decade reveals about that time in history.  What does the music tell them about people, community, values, events of the day?  Take it one step further and ask students to dig into other historical events in each decade, discussing their impact on space exploration, culture and where we are today.  One thing that I missed out on in history was all of the stories that make it so rich.  For me, history was reduced to names, dates and places.  Give your students the opportunity to put themselves into history and learn about how the events influenced each other.

NASA’s 50th Anniversary Flash Feature would be a great one to use in connection with We Choose the Moon.  If your students are like mine, they can’t get enough of this stuff!  Obviously I can’t get enough of it either.  Full disclosure, I have always loved space exploration.  When I was a kid I spent many summers at Black Rock Desert at LDRS (Large Dangerous Rockets) with my dad.  My dad built wooden model rockets- first wooden rocket on record to break sound barrier!  In answer to your next question: yes, I have always been a complete and total nerd. :P

Tips: What? Your still here? Go on, visit the site! (channeling my inner Ferris Bueller today).

Please leave a comment and share how you are using NASA’s 50th Anniversary Flash Feature thesauruses in your classroom!

Comments (3)

[...] site is a great one to use in connection with the NASA 50th Anniversary site I shared [...]

[...] launch.  Using a projector-connected computer or an interactive whiteboard, launch one of the shuttles here.  When you “land” on the moon, let students explore the surface together by [...]

[...] 8. NASA’s 50th Anniversary Flash Feature- Best. Website. Ever. An incredible interactive timeline that highlights each decade in the United States space program from 1950 to 2000. [...]

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