Friday, December 9, 2011

Crew Review: Fractazmic! Game

Don't tell my kids:  mental math is not my strong suit.

So one of the benefits of homeschooling my kids is that I get to re-learn a bunch of stuff that I never learned while in school.  Mental math is one of those skills.

Fractazmic ($6.95), published by I See Cards, is another math game to help make learning math fun.  Yes, "math" and "fun" can be in the same sentence!

The goal of the several versions of Fractazmic is simple:  make a whole "1" by using factions.  There are three set of cards in each deck (you play a game with all the cards). The blue set is based on 12ths, the red suit is based on 16ths, and the green suit is based on 10ths.  Here's an example of a card:

Each card has a visual clue to help assist in making equivalent fractions.  Can you see the little grasshopper and ants?  They are showing 7/16ths on the ruler.  A card with 1/4th is going to have a grasshopper to show that it is equivalent to 4/16th on the ruler. 

The green set (10ths) uses a 1 liter water bottle to show equivalent fractions, such as 2/5ths.

The blue set uses an egg carton to show the equivalence between 1/3rd, 1/4th in the 12ths deck.

I've had a few weeks to play a games recommended at the Fractazmic website Wiki: Trap and Rummy. The rules are clear and easy to remember.  We've also make up variations of these to meet our time constraints.

As you can imagine, I really like playing this game (I still rarely win).  But, I've been really surprised that Ben has willingly played with me -- no grumbling.  We sometimes write down a little cheat sheet of a few of the conversions that stump us, but I can already tell that he's getting faster at making some mental calculations.  I suspect that as we play more, we'll get even better and will not have to count out the eggs, ounces, and bugs on the cards!

You can purchase a deck of cards at the website.   You can also play an online version of Fractazmic with a chance to win a deck of cards. (Warning:  I find the website hugely confusing.  This is a great add-on to your math program, so hang in there when you get to the website.  It is worth it.)

To see what others thought, please visit The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew.

FCC statement:  In exchange for my honest opinion about this product, I was given a free copy of the product for my use. 

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