Addimal Adventure uses a variety of concrete models and cues to teach students different strategies to solve basic addition facts. Each type of strategy is paired with a character, as well, and woven into an adventure story. The strategies increase in complexity, finally encouraging the ultimate goal of memorization of addition facts.
Teaches single-digit addition
Teaches a variety of strategies
Strategies taught in order of complexity
Entertaining and motivating storyline
Useful for Response to Intervention for older students
Addimal Adventure is an outstanding app for use with two groups of students: those who are just beginning to learn single-digit addition and those who are struggling to memorize these math facts. The app is easy to use and the tools and strategies to add are supported both with graphics and voiced prompts. Animations are smooth and quick. Overall, it’s a lot of fun to use!
One outstanding difference between Addimal Adventure and most other addition practice games is the format. Many games simply present flashcards in dressed up format. Students are given the same problems again and again. The hope is that by repetition and drill, the facts will “sink in” and become memorized. On the other hand, Addimal Adventure truly teaches the addition facts in a structured, scaffolded manner.
The app begins with the most basic addition combinations, like 1+2 and 2+4. Students respond by pulling a slider across a number line to the correct answer. Graphics can be manipulated either to count all of the blocks or to “count on” by starting the count at one more than the first number in the problem. The animated support graphics allow students to separate numbers into units and tap them to count. Later, students are guided through more sophisticated strategies including recognizing and using doubles and making groups of ten.
The ultimate goal of the system is for students to memorize the addition facts, so there are activities that are intended to build speed, as well. The reward screen notes if facts have been memorized or solved correctly using strategies. It’s color-coded for quick evaluation of student progress, but touching each colored problem will reveal the student’s exact accuracy on the different levels of the system.
Addimal Adventure is wonderfully entertaining. Students are immersed in an adventure story with likeable, memorable characters who each represent the different strategies being taught. The intrepid Captain Memo and his team of Addimals have been called to save the world from the infamous Professor Possum who has destroyed the golden city of El Summado and is trying to build a robot to destroy the world. Students help the heroes restore the golden city by earning gold “memorized” blocks on the math fact grid. The story is entertaining and the characters are engaging.
There is a settings section where users can control music, mode of play, and level of difficulty. The game also includes an option for shared usage, but the game starts over each time a new user begins to play. This overwrites any records for a given student.
My one suggestion would be about the prompting system that urges students to complete their next problem. When the screen has been inactive for more than four to six seconds, characters try to coax action from the user with various suggestions to input an answer. This becomes quite annoying after any length of time, and could seriously impair a student’s ability to respond correctly. It would be quite a detriment to students with unusually slow processing times or those that are struggling to learn the math facts. Since this system is intended for use by these populations as well as young students, it would be in everyone’s best interests to lengthen the timing between prompts.
Addimal Adventure is quite a bargain at $3.99. Its unique approach to teaching addition strategies is a refreshing change from other apps that fire one problem after another, hoping that repetition will cure all ills. It’s a great way to build confidence and actually teach struggling students effect strategies to improve their performance.
Addimal Adventure does not include any in-app purchase links or any advertising. It does have links to social media and email in the parent/teacher section, which is easily accessible to students. Since part of the intended audience is younger learners, these links should perhaps be a bit more difficult to get to. The app’s makers might want to consider protecting this adults-only area with a password to prevent unauthorized access by inquisitive children.