I’ve written in the past about Matific — a platform (website and app) that allows children access to some very high quality digital activities for each objective in the 2014 Curriculum. Where Matific differs from the plentiful supply of other platforms is in the style of activity. It fits really well with a concrete, pictorial, abstract approach, generally falling in the ‘pictorial versions of concrete resources’ category (if there is one?!). A first thought might be ‘why not use real concrete materials?’ and of course, whenever appropriate these are used. But Matific adds understanding in another way either with a different or ‘made up’ concrete resource that doesn’t actually exist in the real world (such as a ‘cash register’ that will exchange ten 1’s for one 10). As with almost any digital resource, it will also let the user know if they are correct or not, which makes it a go to resource for any groups of children that are better suited to working apart from the rest of the class at any stage.
If you are in any doubt, the good people who choose BETT award finalists are in agreement as Matific has been nominated in the 2017 Educational Apps category. http://bettawards.com/finalists/
Knowing the quality of the platform, I wanted to make it the one digital package that was used throughout our school for Maths support and scaffolding. So the good people at Matific loaded up every resource for each year group so every child could ‘play’ the full extent of content for their year group and teachers just had to make a thing of using it. We added in the prize of an extra playtime + a Matific pencil and hey presto, massive use instantly started to occur. This was a great way to highlight to staff the ease of use for them and the benefit to their children.
The other reason the children have latched onto Matific is it’s new ‘game based learning’ front end that is available for desktops and laptops (coming to tablets soon apparently). This basically introduces children to a ‘collect all the creatures’ type fun by completing maths activities. A little stretch bit of a stretch but the children genuinely go with it and it really enhances their usage.
I’d love to know anyone has any other ideas about increasing usage on any platform — I certainly know that picking a package that makes a difference to learning, such as Matific, plus easy to set up for teachers equals lots of high interest and good learning from children.