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(15 Posts)
northernlady Sun 16-Nov-14 12:24:33


my child has been given a mathletics password by the school.

so in short: how do we make the most of mathletics.

we don't have any instruction just to go along and 'do it' at home.
that's fine by me, but I was watching my son this morning and it all seemed rather random. I wasn't sure how to pitch it. what sections he should be doing. how do i know what topics are appropriate and how do we approach them so it's not all random and piecemeal. some of it seemed rather easy, but I didn't know whether we just go to the level we feel appropriate or ask a teacher or ... what? also he spent quite a lot of time amassing points - to what end.

it's harder for us as I have kept my son away from a computer for seven and a half years, so the whole concept is novel to him.

also: does anyone know if mathletics works on an ipad.

and whether we choose to compete agaist others (which others?) or the school or just do computer stuff.

it's all beyond me.


holeinmyheart Sun 16-Nov-14 13:26:40

If you go on Mathsisfun it will give you the whole years work that a child of his age should complete during the year. He can go on it half an hour a day free. It is a brilliant site and very easy to use and it works on an ipad.
I don't know the site that you mention but I suspect it is similar.
If you are not very good at Maths then I would recommend Khanacademy .com it is a site sponsored by Bill gates and it is an interactive Maths site. It has videos and you can work on the screen, like a white board. It is totally free. It gives the kids prizes as they progress and send an email to report back to the parents so you can see what progress they are making. P

socially Sun 16-Nov-14 13:30:53

We use this at school.

Are his teachers not setting specific tasks for him?

I set tasks each week based on the weeks lessons - after they are done they can play on the Live Mathletics or do whatever they like.

You can't access the tasks unless they're set though I don't think.

KateBeckett Sun 16-Nov-14 13:34:50

Mathletics is great, just let your child log on and have an explore! Teachers can set assignments which pop up and have to be completed before you can access any other area, but otherwise, live mathletics is always popular- you can compete with the computer or if you choose 'world' it links you up with others across the globe smile

KateBeckett Sun 16-Nov-14 13:36:01

Ps you can access the tasks even if they haven't been set, can't remember exactly how to find them, but I remember it being easy enough to navigate once you're logged on!

roguedad Sun 16-Nov-14 14:06:10

Ours use it and yes it does work on an iPad these days. Ideally the teachers would set tasks, but you can go a long way with a bit of exploring and competing. I strongly endorse what KateB said. My son has asked to continue in it Year 7 though his new school does not do it, and this has resulted in my Y1 kid wanting a sub. She is now waving her certificates at her brother. You might want to sit with a child to start with an work out the structure if the teacher has left them alone to get on with it.

It's a bit depressing looking at the global leader board - it shows just how much harder some Middle Eastern and Asian kids work than the Brits!! Though getting the 1000 points a week to earn a certificate and work your way to a gold is a good way of encouraging the little and often approach.

I think socially is mistaken about not being able to do tasks that have not been set - we never had a problem accessing whatever our DS wanted, though maybe a school can set it up in a more restrictive way,

socially Sun 16-Nov-14 14:08:36

Sorry roguedad that may well be true.

I've only ever seen it from a teachers perspective.

AsBrightAsAJewel Sun 16-Nov-14 14:44:43

Teachers can block access to certain activities - I block some until I have taught a specific concept in lessons. I set homework and it blocks access to the full site until those tasks have been complete. When you go into a section (area - e.g. time and money) of the curriculum it is worth starting with the "are you ready?" activity first.

Have you signed up for the parental notifications?

FishWithABicycle Sun 16-Nov-14 14:49:59

We also have it from school. We don't go on every day, but just a couple of times a week go on and do a few activities basically chosen at random, and then a couple of live-mathletics races - It doesn't make much different whether you choose to play against the computer or against other mathletics users worldwide, the only difference is the names of the competitors. We've never yet been on at the same time as a fellow class-member.

Mathletics Mon 17-Nov-14 04:22:26

Hello Northernlady,
Yes, this is actually someone from Mathletics : )
I saw your post and thought I might be able to help.

If your Mathletics licence is provided through school, there are a number of things you can do to help guide your child through the content and be a part of the learning journey. And you don't have to be good at maths!

The first thing I recommend is registering for a parent account. This will let you see results and certificates. As mentioned above, these are great for printing and really motivate students.

To register, visit

Next, download and read our Student Guide. This will show you what is in Mathletics and suggest how to get started.

You can download the Student Guide 'Getting Started' here:

You can also download other guides, including our Parent Guide, here:

If you prefer to watch a video (that's me!), then this YouTube clip is a great starting point. It's made by a Mathletics user in New Zealand, so just ignore the NZ references! The rest of the content is really good though.

You can watch the Parent Video at

I hope all of that helps. And if you feel you would like to talk through anything, please do give us a call or email.

You can find out contact details at

We hope you and your child love learning with Mathletics : )

MN164 Mon 17-Nov-14 07:50:59

Our school started using Mathletics last year, so we're into the second year with it now.

I think it has helped the school improve overall Maths attainment and homework completion rates .... because kids love using computers and get to play on the computer afterwards (probably not just on the Mathletics site).

However our kids, now year 4 and 6, find it REALLY BORING as a way of doing maths. Despite the variety of questions and levels, there is something about the interaction with the screen that is repetitive and dull.

We have discussed this with the school, but it is clear that the teachers are under a lot of pressure and using this system means they can
- set work more easily (no photocopying, no sticking into books etc),
- monitor who has done what more easily (they get online reports of time spent etc) and finally
- there is no marking to do as the website marks it.

This means it isn't going away.

One of the most difficult things with relying on systems like this is that there is no credit given for method or workings. If you get all your method right but mistype the answer or get the final answer wrong, all you get is a bog red cross. We spend time doing workings with them and we try to give them praise at the kitchen table for good method, but that red cross is what the teacher will see and that's what the kids care about. No use doing workings in the homework book, the teachers don't have time.

Both kids are many levels ahead of where their year average is and are now becoming disinterested in Maths because of Mathletics.

I wish the government would spend more money on Teaching staff so that we could go back to pen and paper, with workings and properly streamed home work tasks that help each child in a tailored way.

This is just the tip of the PRIVATISE EDUCATION, HEALTH, WELFARE world we are entering.

MinimalistMommi Mon 17-Nov-14 12:59:37

I don't like Mathletics because I didn't want screen time for my child I prefer paper work so we simply choose not do Mathletics at home. Instead I've bought The Power Of 2 from Amazon which is a maths resource that a parent and child can do together at home for about ten minutes four or so four times a week. My child is six.

roguedad Mon 17-Nov-14 19:16:42

Not sure what you are getting at Mini… We sometimes sit with our daughter when she is doing it. There's nothing about a computer based system that stops parent and child working together. And why would someone complain because their kids are many levels ahead of year average? That's a good thing in our house.

MN164 Mon 17-Nov-14 19:40:35


To be clear. They are many levels ahead before Mathletics and despite it. The point is they find it tedious.

roguedad Sat 22-Nov-14 14:51:26

OK, well in that case the issue is different. Teachers not challenging kids in maths by not giving them work to challenge them at their level was a problem long before Mathletics came along. It still is, and I sympathise. Have you tried the harder variation of the base case (not the year above, but the try something harder option)? It sounds like in your case the system has got too far into the system and is replacing normal teaching. We always saw it as a supplement and something at home where the kids could use their screen time to do something other than sodding Minecraft. With kids your age you might be better getting them to look at the material related to the Primary Maths Challenge, and other enrichment work on the web. You also raise an interesting issue on working - it really should not be used to bypass that aspect - I recall we got ours to focus on developing agility in mental arithmetic tasks and other working-free aspects. Systems like this do not really help with staged calculations or where the teacher really should be seeing how the kids arrived at their answer.

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