One year, my daughter needed a little something to make studying her times tables a bit more motivating. I surfed the web and found just what she needed: Timez Attack by Big Brainz.
Want to know more about this exciting video game? Read on to see my Timez Attack review.
What Is It?
Timez Attack is a fun software program that helps children memorize math facts. It can be played on both a PC and a Mac. Right now, there are multiplication and division games available. They are working on an addition and subtraction game. You can find it as both a free and paid version. We initially tried the free version. My daughter loved it so much that she begged for the paid version. I gave in. It turned out to be well worth the investment.
How It Plays
Your child begins her adventures by selecting a cute creature to take through the Dungeon of Ignoruntz (I love that name :)). Next, she chooses a scenario. In the free version, there are only two available, Dungeon and Palace. In the paid version, there is also a Rock Tower, Ruins, Lava World, and Machine World.
Once the world is chosen, she takes a pretest with her little friend by moving over little multiplication or division signs. Math problems are presented and she must answer them within the time limit. If she doesn’t know a fact, she can just hit the space bar to skip it. That’s a very nice feature that prevents frustration for children just starting to learn their facts.
When the test is done, she starts her journey traveling through the scenario she chose. Each scenario has its own monsters. They could be trolls (Dungeon and Palace), robots (Machine World), dragons (Lava World), aliens (Rock Tower), or monsters (Ruins). When your child faces these, she must answer the math problems written on them. Once she answers all of the problems, the monster turns into a key for her to collect. If she makes a mistake on a problem, the monster shakes his head and gives the right answer. There is a time bar and progress bar above each monster. The time bar indicates how much time she has to answer the question. The progress bar moves down for each question answered until all are answered for that monster.
At the end of every level, there is a bigger monster to face. This monster tests the child on all of the facts learned in that level. When she finishes with this boss, a chart pops up showing her which facts she passed and which ones she didn’t. If she didn’t pass them all, she’ll go back through the level and get more practice on the facts she missed. She doesn’t move on to the next level until the current one is passed. If a child wants to skip the practice on a level because she feels she knows the facts, she has the option of going right to the Challenge which is facing the boss.
Good For Different Learners
I like how Timez Attack teaches new facts in a way that helps both visual and auditory learners. Visual learners benefit from the graphics that show how the math facts look as arrays of dots. Auditory learners get help from the voices that skip count up to the fact. In the image below, you can see how the fact 2 x 3 is portrayed with three sets of boxes with two dots in each. The voices of the creatures would count 2, 4, 6 aloud.
Plenty of Repetition
Repetition is a valuable tool for learning. On this note, Timez Attack doesn’t disappoint. On each level, the child is given the same facts over and over before facing the boss. Facts learned from previous levels are also thrown in here and there. Finally, there is a Retention component to the game that lets kids go back and review.
It’s All About Mastery
Timez Attack is all about mastery of facts. This is my favorite part about the program. A child can’t move on to a higher level until the previous one is passed. Then, when the child is ready, a Post Test component evaluates the child’s skill level.
Addition/Subtraction in Beta
A beta version of an Addition/Subraction game is out. For those of you who don’t know, a beta version is like a preview. I tested it out and liked what I saw. Big Brainz made the navigation of this game easier to accommodate younger children. They also integrate fact families into the game.
Who Can Benefit From It?
Almost any child can play the game. Your child doesn’t have to be super coordinated. The controls are pretty easy.
If, on the other hand, your child stresses easily under the pressure of a time limit, then this game may not be for her. Timez Attack requires that kids type in the answers in a short period of time.
The Home version of the game is for homeschoolers. That’s the one that we bought. You can save multiple games on it so more than one child can play. That’s a nice money saver.