Does you school use MyMaths? What do you think of it?

(20 Posts)
whippet Wed 15-Jun-11 09:33:15

Our primary uses an online maths programme called MyMaths. The teachers set homework 'tasks' for the children and then they complete them online, and the system 'marks' them instantly.

I like the idea in theory, but it practice it seems to cause us lots of headaches for DS2 (age 8, Year 4)

- some of the questions seem ambiguous, so for example there was a 24 hour clock question which showed and analogue clock face at 1 p.m. and asked you to translate into digital time. DS put 13.00 but it marked it 'wrong' and said it should have been 01.00 hmm. There wasn't anything which indicated whether the first time was a.m./p.m. though?

- there were also angle measurements which asked you to use an online protractor to measure to the 'nearest' angle. I was with DS while he did it, and agreed with his answers, but they were all wrong by 1 degree! e.g. 26 degrees, not 27 etc..

The system also seems to keep crashing, and they lose their work etc.
DS invariably ends up in tears over his Maths homework now sad.

I'm getting more and more annoyed and frustrated with it, and am wondering whether to talk to the school.

Just wondered about anyone else's experiences?

IndigoBell Wed 15-Jun-11 09:47:25

Talk to the school. How will they know it's like this if you don't tell them?

They should provide alternative homework for kids who don't have computers at home, so it should be no problem for them to provide the same to your DS.

RoadArt Wed 15-Jun-11 11:35:57

Agree. Give
Feedback to school and mymaths

Have found similar issues with mathletics

RoadArt Wed 15-Jun-11 11:44:58

There are contact details on mymaths website.
Companies need feedback from users
They can't fix it if they don't know its not working properly
Or is difficult to understand

RoadArt Wed 15-Jun-11 11:46:17

Or if it is difficult .....

whippet Wed 15-Jun-11 11:56:17

Yes - I will give ffedback to the school. I'm a bit hmm about it because they introduced it without any real information to parents.

I don't mind him doing stuff online per se (don't need a paper worksheet) it's just that I don't think this system is actually very helpful. The way it tries to show certain aspects - such as putting numbers in columns for Th, tens, units - seems to confuse things more than help!

cazzybabs Wed 15-Jun-11 11:58:18

Our school use it was well .. our gripe is it needs flash (we don't use flash)

singersgirl Wed 15-Jun-11 12:05:47

Our school uses it and DS (Y5) finds it fine for all the number based activities, but the digital protractor/ruler/shape things are really fiddly and I think would be better done on paper with real measuring devices.

whippet Wed 15-Jun-11 12:10:25

singersgirl - yes same here about the measurement tools.

Thing is, DS is a perfectionist, so he wants to go back and do it again until he gets it all correct, but the questions keep changing every time, so he ends up doing extra homework!

mummytime Wed 15-Jun-11 12:27:03

There is a tool for the pupils to leave feedback on what they thought of the homework. I like it, although we've occasionally had similar issues.

Doing extra is no bad thing, first I think the teacher gets a record of time spent on the h/w and number of attempts. Second doing it more than once helps embed the learning.

Lots of secondaries use it, so it is really good for a wide ability range.

whippet Wed 15-Jun-11 12:43:59

mummytime - I agree that doing extra is no bad thing normally but the issue for us is that DS gets very stressed out and tired by it, and usually has a melt down saying "I've got to do it, I've got to do it..." cue tears and upset.
And then we have to intervene and write a note to teacher, yada, yada so I feel that the system is causing us all sorts of unncessary problems.

I will talk to teacher at parents' evening, though she is an old fogey and I suspect she doesn't know how to use it, judging from previous conversations hmm

mummytime Wed 15-Jun-11 13:04:40

Okay I have 3 perfectionist children. I think you are going to have to be very firm, and give him a time limit for his homework, or a score say 80%, if he gets above that he cannot repeat. Tell his teacher what you are doing and why. Then although it may be boring you need to enforce it.

Good luck!

willali Wed 15-Jun-11 13:08:38

I don't like it for the reasons above and also there is no indication at all whether the teacher has seen it! The fact that questions change if you start again is also crap - means you have to start at the beginning again if you want to revise an answer or get it wrong. Also gives no recognition of "showing your workings" ie the child can go through the right procedure to answer but if it is wrong there is no credit for that as there would be in a normal written paper.

mummytime Wed 15-Jun-11 13:33:25

Willali - if my kids teachers only used Mymaths I would agree. However my kids also do lots of maths in class, when the teacher sees their working out etc. Having worked in schools I think it is a good way of overworked teachers setting homework and getting it marked without spending hours themselves (especially at secondary). It also has revision sections for pupils to use if they want.

Actually some tests in primary school give no credit for correct working out, they are marked right or wrong. BTW the alternative a lot of the time is peer marking, and I have seen students mark answers as wrong that were right or vice versa.

RoadArt Thu 16-Jun-11 05:25:40

Our teachers advise that computer programmes should be used only to consolidate learning that has already been taught at school and should be used for practice only. If they struggle with questions online then they need to go back to school and ask for help.

gazzalw Thu 16-Jun-11 07:11:13

DS uses it but don't really like it. He had some shape question which seemed virtually impossible to work out on a computer - but now I know there are online protractors (is this even for primary level?) etc...maybe that's where we went wrong....

whippet Thu 16-Jun-11 09:10:32

We've now found out that the only way to get an accurate score on the angles questions is to zoom in with the protractor by about 200% hmm

DS1 uses it too, and hasn't really had any problems, but then he IS 99% maths geek grin

mummytime Thu 16-Jun-11 11:03:57

Oh the angles questions are a waste of time and stupid to do on computer. I would complain about them, as it is far easier to do with a protractor on paper, and any exam they do will do it that way!
My DD had one recently to do with rotation and reflection which I also think would have been better on paper, but DCs school does also give paper/book based homework too. I tell the teacher's if something doesn't work in the hope that they'll make note for next time.

bigcathy Thu 22-Sep-11 19:34:19

Message deleted by Mumsnet.

CDMforever Thu 22-Sep-11 20:54:29

My KS3 DS uses it and it works very well for him. Although its never clear to me how much he should be doing.....hmm

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