Mr Finlayson

Education and Technology

Timez Attacks

Posted by alexfinlayson on July 22, 2009

Timez Attacks

The cure for multiplication problems

It’s been a while since my last post so I thought at the beginning of this new term I would write about one of the coolest programs I have come across in a long time.TA6

Timez Attacks is developed by the people at http://www.bigbrainz.com

and is without doubt changing the way my kids view multiplication. The premise is pretty simple – kids hate multiplication and love computer games – so they’ve combined the two.

With a Doom/Quake-esque platform the gameplay is instantly recognisable and easy to pick up.

I downloaded the free version and was instantly hooked – and now so are my kids ( I will definitely be buying an upgrade but at the moment I’m broke – come on Union strikes do your thing!) There is also an option to purchase full-school licences as well (which would be better than your own pockets!)

The GameTA5

You play as this strange little green fella – I’m sure he has a name but my guys just call him ‘Squidgy’

You run around the spooky dungeon (nice little area for literacy development – see Myst lessons) until you come across a locked door – on the door you will see a sum (they start off pretty basic) with little cards next to it that represent the problem

TA4As soon as you approach the door it will fire out each of the cards and these will instantly turn into little creatures which you need to collect. Run around after the little snail-like critters until you get enough to correspond to the sum (example: 7 x 3 there will be 3 little critters and as you run over each one it will flash up the multiple, so 7, 14, 21)TA3

Once you’ve collected the right amount of critters you can throw them back at the door – this will then let you type in the answer using the keypad. After this, the door opens and the big bad ogre fella comes out…TA2

As the ogre approaches, various sums will appear on his chest you must quickly type in the correct answer.

Wrong answer – you get clubbed

Too slow – you get clubbed

As with regular computer games, the boss get progressively harder the further you play but here’s why I love this game so much – the sums are not consistent – sure, your first boss will only have the last sum you looked at – but bosses further along the track can throw any sum at you that you’ve looked at in the game – an excellent twist.TA1

Once you finish off the big fella, he spits out a key for the next part of the game… it’s great.

In Class 

The guys who developed this game (http://www.bigbrainz.com) really thought of everything and clearly understand a classroom environment – there is a simple admin program in which you can input class groups and individuals. I created a profile for every member of my class and generic ‘5F’ profile as well.

TA7The admin program keeps track of how much time has been spent on each profile and where that person is up to in the game – it’s great.

I’ve used this as a starter to Numeracy every day this week – placing the wireless mouse and keyboard on a small desk in front of the IWB and having students come up one at a time to tackle a sum – new sum=new student.

While this is going on my other guys are writing down each sum in the back of their math books and trying to figure out answers before the person using the game. I wish I could show you a video to illustrate just how enthusiastic my guys are for this game – there’s screaming and shouting and jumping up and down (if I let them!) all about multiplication! It’s amazing!

I’ll definitely upgrade when I can afford it (it’s only $40 or so but I’m broke at the moment) and I’ll be advertising it to all parents for their homes – I’ll also be pushing heavily for a school licence.

Negative points

If a kid is feeling like they don’t want to be involved – they could feel isolated (but that’s up to the teacher to sort out)

If you run it as a ‘shout-the-answer’ then the person in control may just type what they hear (but repetition will be beneficial anyway)

You won’t ever get the kids out of your room at lunchtime (seriously, I’ve eaten at my desk for 3 days straight)

I urge you to try it, Mr F

Advertisements

2 Responses to “Timez Attacks”

  1. Thanks for sharing in detail the activities you and your students are enjoying in class. The integration of comics and Myst into your language arts curriculum look so fun. Please keep the great ideas coming.

    • alexfinlayson said

      Cheers Patrick – we’re having a great time here – excellent to see kids so enthusiastic about learning (although I think half the time I’m tricking them into learning – but when the results are there – who cares!)

      All the best

      Al

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
%d bloggers like this: