Focus on Math Software

It's been over a year since T.H.E. Journal profiled Math software so, here are some of the latest releases in this hotly contested category.  A vendors directory follows at the bottom of the page.

Aces Research has released Math Advantage, a five CD-ROM set that covers Geometry, Algebra, Trigonometry, Calculus and Statistics. This product is "serious software, not a series of math games," according to the literature.

Edmark's new Mighty Math series includes Zoo Zillions, which guides K-2 students through problem solving and reasoning, number line concepts and counting, addition and subtraction, early 3D geometry and story problems.

Tenth Planet's Geometry Investigation unit ensures that Spanish-speaking children learn and explore mathematics in their native language. To that end, the software's video, audio, math content and multimedia journals are all translated into Spanish, and support for educators teaching Spanish-speaking students is included.

Remember the original Apple IIe Cactus Factory program that helped students run their own "cactus shop," while teaching them basic math and graphing skills? Well, The Cactus Factory, from EXSYM Software, is now available for the Mac, with enhanced scheduling features and Spanish language support.

In Schoolhouse Rock: Math Rock students in grade one through five practice computation, estimation, number classification, word problems, geometry and logical thinking skills. Creative Wonders sticks to the traditional Schoolhouse Rock methodology, making learning easy and fun by putting it to a beat.

The Learning Company's Treasure MathStorm has recently been enhanced, adding photo-realistic landscapes and captivating animation to this popular program that develops math skills for children ages five to nine. Time measurement and other basics are covered, while kids play through various arcade and problem-solving scenarios.

The Fennels Figure Math, from McGraw-Hill, takes students ages eight to 12 inside the wacky Fennel house, where they have to overcome bizarre challenges using everyday math tools like timers, rulers and protractors. This Windows 95 compatible program features 12 challenging and replayable math puzzles.

Filling the need for a pre-algebra program, Math HeadsTARGET TO ED CHOICE is aimed at 10 to 14 year-olds. Students create their own character, who then appears as a contestant on various game show parodies. The CD, from Theatrix, boosts fraction, decimal, percentage, word problem and reasoning skills.

Boxer Introductory Algebra also helps students making the transition from arithmetic to algebra. From Boxer Learning, this Windows-based program emphasizes conceptual understanding while introducing new theories.

The Princeton Review has released Algebra Smart, which helps grade seven to 11 students enhance their Algebra I skills by matching lessons to chapters in 10 of the best-selling Algebra I textbooks. Additional cross-referenced textbooks and drills can be downloaded from the firm's Web site.TARGET TO REVIEW.COM ON OUR ROADMAP?

Davidson & Associates' latest addition to the award-winning Blaster series is Geometry Blaster, covering an entire year of high school geometry. Over 50 subject areas are covered including properties, coordinates, proofs and more.

Waterloo Maple's MathView is a comprehensive symbolic algebra and graphing solution designed for the high school environment and compatible with both Macintosh and Windows platforms. Teachers and students can both benefit from an Internet plug-in that lets them experience live math on the Web.

Modellus, from Knowledge Revolution, is a Windows-only math modeling program that lets teachers and students create, simulate and analyze mathematical models interactively on their computers. Designed to complement the firm's Interactive Physics product, Modellus lets one interact with the models in real time and view multiple models and experiments simultaneously.

Mathcad 7 lets educators and students accomplish everything from derivatives to simultaneous equations in an innovative, intuitive environment. MathSoft has included Web and LAN connection features in this latest version, to enhance educator collaboration world- or campus-wide.

Mathematica for Students 3.0 includes all functions of the popular Mathematica 3.0, minus printed documentation. Offered by Wolfram Research, this Windows, Macintosh and Linux compatible software offers programmable, interactive, Web-publishable documents and over 250 new built-in functions.

The MathWorks' MATLAB 5 provides a single, integrated environment for analysis, visualization, modeling, simulation and large-scale application development and deployment. The new version includes enhancements in graphics, analysis, programming and much more.

All software is both Windows and Macintosh compatible unless otherwise noted.

Directory of Vendors of Math Software mentioned:

  • Aces Research, Inc. (510) 683-8855 -- Inquiry 401
  • Edmark Corp. (800) 691-2986 -- Inquiry 402
  • Great Wave Software (408) 438-1990 -- Inquiry 403
  • Tenth Planet Explorations, Inc. (800) 695-6117 -- Inquiry 404
  • EXSYM Software (303) 661-9132 -- Inquiry 405
  • Creative Wonders (800) 505-6133 -- Inquiry 406
  • The Learning Company, Inc. (800) 227-5609 -- Inquiry 407
  • McGraw-Hill (800) 678-2747 -- Inquiry 408
  • Theatrix Interactive, Inc. (510) 658-2800 -- Inquiry 409
  • Boxer Learning (800) 736-2824 -- Inquiry 411
  • The Princeton Review (800) 566-7737 -- Inquiry 412
  • Davidson & Associates, Inc. (800) 545-7677 -- Inquiry 413
  • Waterloo Maple Inc. (800) 267-6583 -- Inquiry 414
  • Knowledge Revolution (800) 766-6615 -- Inquiry 415
  • MathSoft, Inc. (800) 628-4223 -- Inquiry 416
  • Wolfram Research, Inc. (800) 441-6284 -- Inquiry 417
  • The MathWorks, Inc. (508) 647-7000 -- Inquiry 418

This article originally appeared in the 08/01/1997 issue of THE Journal.