Saturday, November 6, 2010

Montessorium iPad/iPhone apps Review

Picture Copyright and Property of Montessorium

Well, we've had the Montessorium iPad apps a few days now. The kids have really enjoyed working with them. Here is a breakdown of what I think:
  • If you get these apps, definitely introduce the activity to your child first. Demonstrate, keeping your words at a minimum as you would while using tangible Montessori materials. My husband was very excited about the apps so he had the kids try them out right away. If you would like to use these as a Montessori inspired educational tool, then make sure you show them what needs to be done first.
  • If I had to pick just one app of the two, I would pick the Intro to Math app. However, at only $4.99 per app, it won't break the bank if you purchase both and they'll probably be put to good use. If you spend a lot of time in the car, this would be great for your children to work with while on the road. Again, make sure you've presented the lessons first and that they are familiar with them. You want this learning tool to be effective. Even though many things seem simple to us adults, Montessori would have you break things down step by step as if you were a child needing explanation for the first time. Don't take it for granted!
  • The Intro to Math app has several works including, sorting red rods, counters and numbers, "sandpaper" numbers, and blue and red rods. The only thing I think could have been better was less sound or no sound when sorting the red rods, but you could always turn the volume down if you observe that it is distracting to your child.
  • Don't be mistaken though! These apps are really esthetically pleasing without all the frills and thrills that so many children's electronic "teaching tools" seem to have. I'm so glad that they kept it simple and as true to Montessori as they could. I also believe that Montessorium has set the standard of how "electronic Montessori" should actually look and perform. I think they've done Maria proud!
  • The Intro to Language app has traceable "sandpaper" letters, and a function where the child can record themselves saying the sound of the letter. I'll be honest, I don't quite yet "get" the child recording themselves saying the letter sound. By this I mean that so far I haven't found it as useful, but maybe others out there have. I may still have to try this out a little further with the children. The "sandpaper" letters were great though, and I think the children can benefit from them. I can totally see myself using this to practice letter recognition and sounds while waiting to be seen by the Doctor, in the car, or at the library.
  • My 2 1/2 year old needed more direction than my 4 and 5 year old's did, but I don't think it was necessarily made for a 2 1/2 year old. My 7 and 8 year olds enjoyed the apps too, but since they were already familiar with the concepts, they would like to see some elementary apps added in the future.
Overall, I have to say that I am very pleased with our purchase of the Montessorium apps and would likely purchase more. I could see them creating apps for the hanging bead stair, teen and tens boards, fraction circles, multiplication board and more! Meanwhile it does like they will be coming out with a movable alphabet app soon. As cute as it looks I would have preferred that they use real pictures instead of illustrations, but as long as they keep it simple I think it will be just as good as their other apps.
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  1. I LOVED these apps! I use the past tense because the home button on my 3 year old iPod died only a few days after I downloaded the apps...go figure!

  2. I believe these programs are very useful to the older child with special needs.


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