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App review by Debbie Gorrell, Common Sense Education | Updated September 2014
2nd Grade Math Planet – Fun Math Game Curriculum

2nd Grade Math Planet – Fun Math Game Curriculum

Games engage and challenge; great for practice and building fluency

Learning rating
Editorial review by Common Sense Education
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Grades
K–2
Subjects & Skills
Math, Character & SEL, Critical Thinking

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Pros: Provides options to work on comprehension, fluency, or both; variety of themes and styles keeps kids engaged.

Cons: Lacks hints and feedback, missing opportunities to teach at a deeper level.

Bottom Line: Kids have fun while practicing a variety of second-grade math skills.

Skills covered in the Planet activities are not neatly organized by content, so take some time to review the activities and identify skills kids need to practice. The first planet, for example, includes activities that cover number sense, addition strategies, and telling time. You should find that, as you progress from one planet to the next, skills become more advanced. Have kids complete a level as practice or reinforcement and assess their results using the Skill Tracker. Kids should work independently, but they can take turns and share devices, since the game accommodates multiple users. Use Math Facts activities for building fluency in addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. 

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Editor's Note: 2nd Grade Math Planet – Fun Math Game Curriculum is no longer available.

Kids choose from two main options for play: Math Facts and Planet mini-activities. In Math Facts, they can choose addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division to complete a set of grade-appropriate drills as quickly and accurately as possible. As kids play, drills get increasingly more difficult. In Planet mini-activities, more than 30 levels are spread across five planets. Kids work on a variety of skills and activities with different themes. For example, in one Planet 1 mini-activity, kids count trains to work on number sense skills; in another, they spin an analog clock to practice telling time. A progress-tracking program shows kids' scores as percentiles and as percent correct. Kids are motivated as they earn points and stars, which they can use to unlock avatars. A free, condensed Android version of the game covers content for grades 2 through 8. 

Content areas in 2nd Grade Math Planet, which addresses a handful of Common Core math standards, include addition, subtraction, number sense, place value, estimation, geometry, and telling time. The game features Planet mini-activities; kids have to complete a level within a planet to get to the next level. Solid learning progression is evident throughout the game, even within the mini-activities. For example, in one mini-activity, kids start by counting jellybeans, identify which table has more jellybeans, and then drag jellybeans to finish addition and subtraction number sentences. The game also features a Math Facts section, in which kids choose a specific topic and then race to complete drills with speed and accuracy. Although no feedback is provided for incorrect answers, the game is a highly effective tool for practicing and building fluency in essential math skills. 

Overall Rating

Engagement

A variety of activities and themes keep kids engaged; earning points and stars motivates. 

Pedagogy

Mini-activities help kids develop a conceptual understanding of the skills. Math Facts option builds speed and accuracy. Activities increase in difficulty as kids progress. 

Support

Skill Tracker gives a comprehensive view of kids' progress and areas of strengths and weaknesses. Mini-activities have clear, concise instructions and include brief tutorial animations. 


Common Sense reviewer
Debbie Gorrell Educator

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