CCS uses game to help math skills

Published 1:39 pm Thursday, January 12, 2017

A fourth grade student at Clanton Intermediate plays a game while learning math fact on Reflex.(Joyanna Love/ Advertider)

A fourth grade student at Clanton Intermediate plays a game while learning math fact on Reflex.(Joyanna Love/ Advertider)

By JOYANNA LOVE/ Senior Staff writer

Chilton County Schools is working to improve student math skills and their test scores through Reflex: Math Fact Fluency.

Reflex Math is an educational game that helps students practice basic facts in addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

The school system purchased the program for every third, fourth and fifth grade class last year.

Clanton Intermediate School principal Louise Pitts said the program is designed for students to spend 15 minutes working through the problems each day. More time can be spent if needed or time allows.

“It’s a wonderful program. It is amazing how quickly they are all picking up on these math facts that used to be a struggle,” Pitts said.

Teachers and principals can see how well students are doing at learning the facts by logging in and looking at the student’s profile. The data can pinpoint specific math problems students have not learned yet.

“It is becoming automatic for them to know that. Instead of trying to memorize or write them, they are enjoying learning them,” Pitts said.

The home page for the game features several different themes of games the children can click on. Themes include everything from ancient Egyptian to a carnival to a space.

Pitts said the format of the program helps the students develop speed and accuracy in solving the math problems.

“Whereas all of these children want to get on an iPad and play a game, this is an educational game that will help them build automaticity on those math skills that will benefit them,” Pitts said.

The program focuses on basic facts for 0 to 12. Students must type in the correct math answer in order to move forward on the game.

Pitts said she was at Jemison Elementary when it was the first school to test the program two years ago.

“The kids loved it. The teachers loved it, and it began to make such a difference that we bought it for the whole next school year,” Pitts said.

Jemison is already starting to see positive outcomes.

“At Jemison Elementary last year, there ACT Aspire math scores were better than the state average, and it was the best in Chilton County,” Pitts said.

Pitts said the game can also be accessed by students at home with their log in information. This gives students the option to continue practicing on the weekend and school breaks.