We had the opportunity to review the online math tutor program Math-*Whizz* from Whizz Education.

Math may or may not be your favorite subject. If it is, you probably have no worries when it comes to assisting your child with their math. If math is not your favorite subject, you are probably looking for some help teaching math, especially if you a have a child who struggles in the subject.

What if you could have a tutor that not only focusses on the exact areas where your child struggles, but also “works alongside” them to ensure they are mastering those areas? That is pretty much what you get when using Math-*Whizz*.

Math-*Whizz* is an interactive math tutor program that is geared towards students, ages five through 13 years old or through the eighth grade. After students use Math-*Whizz* approximately 45-60 minutes a week over the one-year subscription period, Whizz Education suggests students will see an improvement in their math age by 18 months.

**The Assessment**

Whew. The Math-*Whizz* assessment was looong, but thorough. I guess that it must be long to ensure the program gathers all of the information needed to create a tutoring experience that caters to the gaps your child may have in math.

I had Canyon take the assessment in one sitting. Depending on the age of your child, that may work for them. Others may need to complete the assessment in two sittings. Fortunately, all responses your child has already entered will be saved.

I noticed some repeats in the type of questions that were asked. Asking the same question in a different manner helped to see how Canyon was processing the information. As Canyon was taking the assessment, I was wishing I would have had Lily, ninth grade, join us on the review. The questions were challenging, and it would have been nice to see how she would have done on the assessment. I think the assessment would be great for even a high school student to take to ensure they know what they are supposed to in high school and that there are no gaps in their math comprehension.

There were some questions that made me stop and think. I was glad the assessment allows students to skip a problem and continue the assessment if they do not know the answer or come across a problem that involved calculations they have not yet learned.

Canyon did well on this section of ordering negative and positive numbers. He saw this in the assessment as well as in the exercises he was later assigned. I like the use of items on a clothes line, but wish the clothing was more general (ex: hat, coat, pants, shirt, dress, etc.) instead of bikini bottom, bikini top or women’s underwear.

After he completed the assessment, a detailed report of where he excelled as well as where he needed more work was created. I also was given a base for his math age, so I could monitor the progress he made as his math age increased.

After only using the program for a few days, the report I received showed he already made progress in his math skills. Do not be discouraged about the help areas Math-*Whizz* reveals where your child may need assistance. With regular and consistent use, Math-Whizz can get your child up to pace.

Once he started working through the exercises during his personalized tutoring sessions, I was able to see the focus of the lessons on areas of math where he needed more work. There were a few learning curves for us with some of the math problems.

When Canyon was working through some of his assigned exercises, I got confused. This is one of the multiplication problems he was to complete.

The way he was instructed to complete the calculation was confusing to me. To complete this multiplication problem, he was to pull the numbers apart and multiply them and then take the results and add them. Canyon is just now learning multiplication and his math curriculum does not teach it in this manner. When doing multiplication, he just does straight multiplication, which is the way I prefer him to complete his math problems. Once I understood the way Math-*Whizz* was teaching him to work through the problem, I was able to explain to Canyon how the problem was being solved. This was our first introduction to Common Core instruction, which is how Math-*Whizz* teaches. I guess there could be a benefit in learning different ways to solve a math problem.

Canyon had some fun decorating his “My Study” area before he started his tutoring session. He was able to decorate his room, which he enjoyed. Math-*Whizz* gives students an opportunity to personalize their experience further than the personalized lessons. It is so personalized that there is even a message on the Notice Board of his birthday countdown. I am curious to see what is going to happen once his birthday arrives. I am sure it will be quite exciting.

Other features your child may enjoy are the community area with Whizz News (ex: also jokes, poster downloads, math challenges you can play with other children around the world, etc.) Users may even choose a specific topic of preferred interest to study instead of the tutor assigned lessons.

The dictionary section is quite handy. From “a.m.” all the way to “zero property of multiplication” and everything in between, your child has access to the definitions to 536 words that are included somewhere in the Math-*Whizz* lessons.

More fun (and learning) for your child is access to a variety of games. There are so many that your child could get distracted by the fun. One of the things that is good is that math is still being taught while your child is playing games. Students are also able to earn rewards for the work they complete. They may work independently, connect with their fellow classmates as well as students abroad.

I found the parent area to be a great resource. Along with the detailed content in the parent dashboard, I can issue certificates of completion, watch help video tutorials on how to use Math-*Whizz* and more.

There are also videos of the current lessons Canyon was working on as well as the next area of study he was scheduled to complete. That gave me a quick peek into the content of the lessons he is doing. I was able to work through the lessons without affecting his progress reports. Try some sample lessons.

Math-*Whizz* encourages you to include your child in their learning as well as meeting their goals. This planning sheet is one you can print and allows your child to fill out their goals for the week of using Math-*Whizz*.

Something that would make using this program easier for Canyon (and me) is if everything had a narrator, so he could work independently. Some of the areas do have narration (kindergarten through second grade level work). There is a lot of reading and I had to help Canyon read many of the tips, instructions and the problems. Some of the reading for the problems were a challenge, because he is not as proficient as the level of reading required. I had to sit with him to read the questions to him, which was not a benefit to him or me.

Something to consider before purchasing Math-*Whizz* is that Adobe Flash is required to use the program. Flash is easily available, but you do have to also make sure your computer is up to date and able to handle the program working on it.

Although Math-*Whizz* is a supplemental program, the creators have thought of just about everything that makes it a good math tutor program to help your child improve their math skills. Depending on your math approach in school, Math-*Whizz* could be a great tool in your classroom.

**PRICE AND AVAILABILITY**

You may currently purchase Math-

*Whizz*for a monthly ($12) or annual ($124) subscription for one child. Take the free trial to see if Math-

*Whizz*is a good fit for your family.

**Social Media Links**

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MathWhizz/ and

https://www.facebook.com/WhizzEducation/

Google+: https://plus.google.com/114065875490611944121

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MathWhizz

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/whizzeducation and

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCr_wrJ9jDcPLx_n8nqq0_tg

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