Friday, August 10, 2012

Animated Word Problems

Engaging students has always been a considerable challenge for teachers. Fortunately, there are a vast amount of resources and technologies available to help meet that challenge. One resource for upper elementary and middle school students is a catalog of animated word problems that guide students through the process of solving multi-step problems. The narrator and animated host is a young woman named Infinity Quick, or IQ for short. The introductory animation shows IQ receiving a new word problem on her computer. The movie is paused, giving students a few minutes to tackle the problem on their own. They may then proceed to watch the problem solving unfold.

The solution to each problem is presented with diagrams, charts, and calculations. The video solutions may be paused or replayed as many times as needed. Some of the video solutions contain interactive components, allowing students to further connect with the math lesson. After the video presentation, students are invited to try a similar problem on their own. They are then taken to the practice room where a new interactive problem is presented. If help is needed, there are a series of hints available to the student at the press of a button. The hints make use of illustrations that are familiar to students who have previously viewed the video. To further assist students, problem solving tools such as a calculator and a sketch pad are also available.

There are currently 19 problems available covering topics such as fractions, ratios, percentages, probablility, geometry averages and algebra.

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