Introduction to numbers for young minds

 






Mad 123 has two parts. The first one introduces the digits from 1 to 9. The second one shows how you can add and subtract things and also numbers.
Click here to see Mad 123 in the iTunes store—where you can buy it for $1.99.
 


Here’s the page for number 5. The picture shows a hand with five fingers. A gray “5” acts as a prompt. When you tap the correct blue button, the gray 5 turns black and the picture becomes animated: the fingers lengthen and grow strange tips. Young children love this animation.

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When you open the page at left, you see one blue fish and the number 1 before the + sign. A second blue fish appears and the number 2 replaces 1. And so on until you reach a certain number of blue fish—in this example, three.
Then four red fish appear one by one as the numbers 1 to 4 are displayed after the + sign.
The total number of fish can’t exceed 9.
So what happens when you tap the blue 7 in this example? A black 7 replaces the gray “?”, the fish express their pleasure with a little dance, then the whole process begins again: a random number of blue and red fish and a new addition appear on the page.
After counting and adding fish, there comes a time when you can try the page at right. All you have to do is replace the fish with your fingers. When you tap the correct blue number, the black digits and the + and = signs jump with joy.

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The page at left is a kind of intermediate stage on the way to subtraction. Random numbers of blue and red birds appear as in the addition page. The total number of birds is displayed after the = sign. Even quite young children understand eventually that they need to count the red birds to see the dance of the birds. Not so young children can try the birdless page.
In the subtraction page at right, a certain number of blue dogs—here, nine—appear one by one as numbers 1 to 9 replace each other before the – sign. Then the last three blue dogs turn red as numbers 1 to 3 replace each other after the sign. Similarly, children discover soon enough that they need to count the blue dogs to find the mystery number.
The app includes two multiplication pages, with and without rabbits. They have to be very simple, as the result can’t exceed 9. There are two “a x ? = y” pages, but no division page.