Number Time

By Herrera, Terese A. | Teaching Children Mathematics, May 2004 | Go to article overview

Number Time


Herrera, Terese A., Teaching Children Mathematics


Number Time, located at www.bbc.co.uk/schools/numbertime, is a unique place for young mathematics learners. Developed by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), the site uses interactive animation to help children in pre-K through grade 2 understand and practice number basics. Users will find online games, videos that tell number stories, worksheets for offline work, and support for teachers and parents.

In the games section of the site, children practice number recognition and simple addition and subtraction. for example, in the Dartboard game, children reach a target score by placing darts on a dartboard numbered 2 through 9; spaces on the board's outer rim are double the value of the inside number. In level 2, if the target number is 12, students can put darts on 3 and 9; 4 and 8; 5 and 7; the outer space by 6; 2 and the outer space by 5; 8 and the outer space by 2; or 6 and the outer space by 3. In every case, the unfinished equation shows on the screen, such as "3 + 9 =," and children are asked to click on "=" if they are sure of their darts. The completed equation then appears: "3 + 9 = 12." If the equation is incorrect, the child is asked to try again.

In the game of Test the Toad, people wearing sweatshirts numbered 1 to 15 form a number line. A green toad sits on the head of number 1 and a problem appears: "1 + 5 =." Students choose an answer by clicking on the correct shirt; if correct, the equation reads "1 + 5 = 6" and the toad jumps on the next five heads to reach number 6. Accompanying beeps--five in this case--further emphasize the change in position along the number line. Problems continue to appear automatically, testing children's addition and subtraction skills.

In another section of the site, Watch Addem, ten short cartoons feature Addem the Snake solving mathematics problems with his friend Ann the Ant. …

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