While I was hanging out at a homeschool forum the other day, I read a post that mentioned Reflex Math and a free trial. I’m always interested in “free,” so I googled the site and signed up for my 14 day trial. I was so absolutely impressed that I had to post about it. No free products, no exchange for a review—just because I REALLY loved this website (and so did my son, but we’ll get to that). Why? Because we’ve ditched our math flashcards.
Both of us hate those dreaded flashcards and the endless drill. I want him to know his facts, and I understand the importance of math facts review, but please! There has got to be a better way. And truly, there is. Reflex Math has completely replaced all the drill and flashcards.
The idea of Reflex Math is to provide an engaging way for students to learn and review their math facts: addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. But rather than traditional drill, the site is structured like an arcade. Each lesson begins with a “Speed Cube Challenge” where the student types in numbers (for the website to gage the child’s typing speed) and then answers to math problems (to gage the child’s skill level). Then, a rule is introduced or reviewed (a cute bear pops up and announces that a rule is a way to get a lot of facts “game ready” at the same time). Next, it’s game time!
Seven games are provided for the student to select from, and in each game, the student answers the math facts quickly and accurately to progress through the game. Answer quickly to move away from the bad guy, to build the alien’s ice cream cone before he gets upset and leaves, to make your ninja jump to the next level, to jump from lily pad to lily pad eating bugs, to fly your hot air balloon across the sky, etc. It’s math facts review that your kids will actually want to do!
Tokens are earned for the number of questions answered during play. At a certain point during the lesson, the “store” opens and the child can purchase items using the tokens he has earned. He can purchase clothes, shoes, sunglasses, and other items for his avatar or decorations, animals, and other items for his tree house.
The website is also set up for a teacher to be able to track the progress of the student with several different reports. You can easily see how many facts your child has mastered, how much practice time he has completed, and more.
How effective were the games? My son not only answers his math facts more quickly, but he can now do them in his head! He was even introduced to subtraction for the first time, and he never missed a beat. All in only 2 weeks time! My son loved this so much that he told me he wanted to save his money to purchase the year subscription ($35 per student/year).
I absolutely recommend Reflex Math, particularly if your child is a hands-on (kinesthetic) learner. Skip the flashcards, seriously. This is the ticket!
**UPDATE 2/2017: We have purchased subscriptions for Reflex Math for both of our kids for nearly five years, and absolutely love the program. It has completely eliminated the need for flashcards in our homeschool, and my kids excel in timed math and speed drills.**