Make Math Fun with These 7 Apps

With the increasing popularity of STEM-focused learning more and more students are taking on more and more challenging math courses. However, for some students, the subject can present a real challenge; but knowing where to turn to for help can greatly mitigate the struggle and improve their understanding. Don’t be afraid to get creative with your math resources—turning to apps, websites, and online programs can help kids literally solve the problems in front of them. Choosing the most helpful, appropriate, and enjoyable online math tools can be a problem on its own, so here are some online resources to help make math fun for students at all grade levels.

1. Khan Academy is a completely free personalized learning resource with online courses, videos, and exercises. Students can complete daily reviews and keep track of their progress within the platform’s learning dashboard. The math tutorials are categorized by subject and by grade level for easy navigation and utilize specialized content—with the help of organizations like NASA, California Academy of Sciences, and The Museum of Modern Art—to bring the lessons to life.

What teachers love: Practice problems provide hints one step at a time, so students can get help when they’re stuck at a specific point, but don’t necessarily need help with the entire problem. This allows them to work things out for themselves and learn at their own pace. Works for all grade levels. 

2. YouTube University. Many students are already familiar with YouTube, but we’re guessing they don’t frequent the site’s University channel. The Mathematics playlist has more than 30 videos with problem-solving lessons and real-life examples of math in action. Students can also subscribe to individual courses, teachers, universities, and organizations—like Khan Academy—to get notifications when new math-related videos are posted.

What teachers love: YouTube is a familiar platform for students so it’s easy for them to search for the help they need. Plus, many of the videos are relatable and fun (check out Math Antics’ channel, for instance). For grade levels 10-12. 

3. IXL is a subscription-based learning site, but it does offer free daily math practice problems. Students can complete ten free questions (in each subject) per day and grow their math skills. The subscription membership includes unlimited practice questions, analytics, certificates, and personalized skill recommendations.

What teachers love: If a student gets a problem incorrect, the program shows all the steps to complete the problem so they can see where they went wrong and learn from their mistakes.

Make math fun4. Math is Fun. Just as the name implies, Math is Fun aims to make math enjoyable and entertaining. The site uses puzzles, games, quizzes, worksheets, and a forum to help guide students through their learning.

What teachers love: The problems and solutions are all explained in simple language, making it easier for students to learn on their own without the necessity of an adult or teacher to “translate.” Works for all grade levels. 

5. Wolfram MathWorld is a free online resource for everything related to mathematics. The site includes interactive GIFs and demonstrations, downloadable notebooks, and “capsule summaries” for various math terms. Students can explore the more than 13,000 entries to strengthen their math foundation and build up their understanding.

What teachers love: The site allows older and more advanced students to really dig deep into mathematics, with topics and articles in several different math-related subjects for a variety of background and ability levels. 

6. With the Art of Problem Solving, students have three different avenues to get help and resources related to math. The Online School is a gateway for students to enroll in additional math classes and AoPS’ Bookstore offers challenging, in-depth textbooks so students can further explore the subject.

What teachers love: Students can challenge themselves to dig deeper into the math subjects they find fascinating through moderated message boards, games, and articles. For grade levels 2-12. 

7. Desmos is a free online graphing calculator that students can use to graph functions, plot data and evaluate equations. The site also includes math examples and even creative art—so students can get the most out of the calculator.

What teachers love: The website and program are extremely user-friendly, with an extensive help center; and with Desmos, families don’t have to worry about purchasing a pricey graphing calculator. For grade levels 6-12. 

Other options include the Prodigy Math Game, Numberphile YouTube channel, edX, MIT OpenCourseWare, Mathplanet, Adapted Mind, and Illustrative Mathematics. 

Need more help with math? Boston Tutoring Services is happy to help. Please click here to learn more about what we offer.

Allison Green
Boston Tutoring Services

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