Mastering basic facts can be a chore. A student might master the concept of addition or subtraction but still need lots of practice and reinforcement to memorize the math facts. A common method to achieve memorization includes drill with flashcards. In this digital age you can also find online programs to drill those math facts. Many of those drill programs are flashy, colorful and are more “game oriented” than learning oriented. Usually those programs require a subscription because they are entirely internet based.
UberSmart Math Facts from UberSmart Software is different. This Downloadable software comes with a license that allows you to install on all your [Windows based] computers. It is a computerized flashcard based drill program. There are no flashy characters. No quests to perform. No animation that can distract students. That sounds boring, doesn’t it? But it’s not boring. Really. Three of my girls used this program and I played around it. Not once did I hear “mom, this is boring. I don’t want to do this.” I like that it is focuses on the facts and not on gimmicky games to entice children to want to play. My girls were motivated to complete the problems because they liked the encouraging notes.
I really enjoyed practicing with UberSmart Math. I liked how encouraging the messages were after you completed a round of the flashcards. I think that makes the program that much more enjoyable. I like the way they do the intermediate mastery tests. ~ Turtlegirl
UberSmart Math Facts is also different because it doesn’t just drill the facts. There are two modes: Learning and Practice, and two levels: Beginner and Intermediate. The Beginner level uses dots and the Intermediate level uses a more traditional looking flashcard. With the dot cards you can choose to show the numbers with the dots.
In addition to the learning and practicing by drill, the program also offers keyboard entry practice. One of my hang ups about using the computer to drill math facts with young children is the student is often unfamiliar with the keyboard and has to hunt and peck for those numbers which slows them down. UberSmart has a Keyboard Entry listed under the Practice tab. I’ve been refreshing my 10 Key skills (see that screen shot above? That’s me. Fast but not quite accurate.) You do not need to have a keyboard with the numbers on the right. The number row of a standard QWERTY keyboard work just as well and still offer the student the opportunity to learn the location of those number keys.
Key features I really appreciate!:
- Parent can track student progress ~ There are several reports parents and students can view including mastery charts, test scores (grade book), progress reports, mastery dates, and competition achievements. You can even print the grade book! Some reports can be exported.
- Assessment & Mastery Tests ~ The Tests tab has both Assessment Tests so you can know what you need to do and Mastery Tests so that you know when you’ve mastered a set of facts.
- It is downloadable!~ I love that this is a one time purchase with a license to use it on all the [Windows based] computers we own. I installed this on Turtlegirl’s laptop and Tailorbear’s laptop as well my own. When Supergirl is a little more independent I can install it on her computer but she will have to start over as her progress is stored on my laptop.
- Admin Password ~ Even though this is installed on my students’ laptop, They cannot make changes because it is admin password protected. The Admin can add students, remove students and change student settings.
- Student Settings ~ The admin can customize some settings such as upper limits for multiplication and division, time per problem, and mastery speed.
There is a feature that I cant decide if I like it or not: Full Screen. I like that it blocks out the computer desktop which can be distracting, but I do wish that it actually made the program screen larger. I was hoping when I set it to Full Screen that the size of the flashcards would be larger but all it really does is create a different, math related background.
UberSmart is a great drill program. It’s especially good for the harder concepts like Multiplication and division. I have always had trouble with multiplying twelves. I really like how easy it was to learn them and to practice them. I also like the way that you can practice your number typing speed! That was really cool! ~ Tailorbear
- The Vender: UberSmart Software
- The Product: UberSmart Math Facts
- Format: Downloadable Software
- Age Range: Although this is geared for K or 1st through 6th grade it is appropriate for any one who needs to mastery the four basic operations or who just wants to improve their speed.
- Price: $24.95
- NOTE: This is only available for Windows (XP, Vista, 7, 8). According to the FAQ page there are no plans for a MAC version.
You can read my other Schoolhouse Review Crew Reviews to find more great products.