New math app adds to Virginia middle schoolers’ test prep tools

Middle school students have a new tool to help them prepare for Virginia’s Standards of Learning (SOL) exams. Created by Virginia Interactive (VI), Master the Math is a mobile educational game that focuses on the mathematics curriculum from grades three through eight. The flexible mobile application can be used on Apple iPods, iPhones and iPads.

“Today’s students are digital natives, and smart phones and tablets are how they stay connected,” Superintendent of Public Instruction Patricia I. Wright said. “Applications like Master the Math allow teachers to tap the appeal and popularity of these devices to supplement and reinforce classroom instruction.”

Released September 30, 2011, and available free from the iTunes App Store, the Master the Mathmobile application features more than 800 questions from 19 released SOL tests. The application randomly displays unique questions each time a student selects an exam. Questions frequently include visual elements, such as formula sheets, diagrams, graphs and charts. Students can select a difficulty level, view correct answers either during or after the test and retrieve their score history. The application requires no Internet connection and can be expanded to incorporate additional future questions as desired by VDOE.

Master the Math's interactive features include sound effects and clues. By selecting a “50/50,” two incorrect answers are eliminated. Hints provide a tidbit of information to help point the student in the right direction. Testers also can take a risk with “Call a Tutor,” who may or may not share the correct answer.

Master the Math fulfills VI’s promise to the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) to reinvest the winnings from VDOE’s October 2010 “Standards of Learning Apple Apps Challenge," which recognized VI’sPass the Past app, an educational history and geography game that also helps students prepare for Virginia’s SOL exams.