Staff Writers

Type to Learn Jr.
Windows/Mac CD-ROM (Sunburst)
Ages 4/up

Type to Learn Jr. provides a bright, colorful, game-oriented interface for young children to learn the keyboard. Emphasis is on letter-location and use of left or right hand, rather than on fingering per se, and children receive lots of reward screens while helping to find treasures (by typing letters, words, etc.).
     After signing in, the kid-friendly screen offers activities such as (i) The Learning Center (tutorial) (ii) Cassie's Empty Nest (beginning practice) (iii) Hopkins's Treasure Trove (intermediate practice) and (iv) Tiny's Flying Feat (advanced practice, including identifying rhyming words). There are 3 levels of difficulty for each activity, with lots of music, animation and games to keep a child interested. Teachers can press Ctrl-T to access Teacher Options, which include monitoring children's progress and printing reports.

Math Problem Solver
Windows/Mac CD-ROM (Curriculum Associates)  - Level 4/Ages 7-11

     With many of the newer programs requiring lots of maneuvering to set up and run,
Math Problem Solver is a joy to use.
     Teachers will find the Teacher Options screen very user-friendly. There are tabs for Class Management, Student Options, Progress, Test Prep and Problem Bank. One click of a button will add/delete classes or edit a class name; add/delete a student or edit a student name.
     Students will also have an easy time getting into, and using, the program once they sign in. The Main Menu, which is always accessible, displays the topics covered: Data Analysis, Number Sense, Measurement, Algebra, Operations, Geometry and Test Prep. Each topic provides 3 units of colorful, illustrated drills and multiple-choice exercises, along with Test Prep Practice. Students may click on "Go to Walk Through"  at any time to receive step-by-step assistance in analyzing and solving a problem,  making the program a valuable classroom tool.

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