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Math Blaster HyperBlast
Pros: Many levels and function choices accommodate a broad range of use for kids with varying skill levels.
Cons: Gameplay can stray from math-focused learning into pure arcade entertainment.
Bottom Line: A versatile tool to build and practice basic math skills, though it could better integrate learning and fun.
Its versatility makes Math Blaster Hyperblast a fun supplement to classroom work. The app tracks scores for up to six kids with one email address. Unfortunately, high scores reflect a combination of kids’ performance on math problems as well as points earned shooting objects in the game. Teachers will appreciate the developer's website, which includes online games and extensive resources such as worksheets and lesson plans.
Editor's Note: Math Blaster Hyperblast is no longer available.
Math Blaster Hyperblast is an arcade-style game where kids can develop speed in math recall as they answer problems in addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, or standard form. The different skill choices and customizable number ranges make this app playable for a variety of ages and skills, from elementary through middle school.
In the game, kids blast through space, shooting objects that get in their way, and when a multi-legged robot appears, they answer a few math problems, practicing a variety of concepts while fighting off this alien-robot. Play offers challenges for a wide range of math abilities, even within each skill. Kids can choose the range of numbers (like sums to eight) within the skill and can test combined skills such as addition/subtraction or multiplication/division. Challenge levels can also be set to easy, medium, or hard. The game ends after a round with multiple incorrect answers.
The “hyperblasting” portion of the game is pure arcade-like fun, and kids can develop some speedy reflexes as they maneuver through space, tilting the device to dodge obstacles and pressing the button on the screen to shoot aliens. However, the educational thrust of the app appears in the math quizzes for each mission. When they encounter the many-legged robot, students have to choose the correct answer to the given problem on one of the legs. The legs are moving a bit, though, which can make identifying the right answer difficult. And the touch screen doesn’t always register the tap on the chosen answer. When kids choose a wrong answer, they see the correct answer before the next problem appears, but they get no instruction or explanation of the underlying concepts.