Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.
Earlier this year, our family had the pleasure of reviewing a geography game created by a boy named Byron during his prolonged hospital stay.
We appreciated Byron's initiative, creativity, and game, so were happy to hear that he has released a second original game: Math Sprint - The Mental Math and were eager to review it.
The Creation, Contents, and Play of Math Sprint
Created by a kid for kids, the game is straightforward, yet flexible so that kids, families, and even classrooms of kids, can enjoy learning and practicing math facts together.
Meant for 2-8 players - or teams of players - ages 7+, the game takes about 30 minutes to play if you use the 400 meter dash options, or less time with the 200 and 100 meter options.
To play, different colored plastic runner game pieces are places around a running track printed on a thick, foldable, laminated gameboard. Then, as players correctly answer mental math questions involving addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and/or word problems printed on well-made game cards, they "race" around the track to the finish line.
Along with the game board, 8 runner playing pieces, instructions, 92 addition and subtraction cards, and 106 multiplication and division cards, there are also coach tip cards, 10 dry erase cards, a dry erase marker, 30 wild cards and 30 challenge cards.
These work together to make the game flexible.
Not only can you adapt how long the game will last by choosing the 100m, 200m, or 400m options on the track, but you can choose which types of cards you use, how many, if you want to create additional customized cards, etc. The variety of well-made game materials and simplicity of game set up and play, make it flexible.
Basically, there is a name and picture for each colored piece with some indication of the runners' hobbies, interests, etc. These "profile pictures" of the "runners" can help kids choose which runner to play as and give them something relatable to "break the ice" with.
How We Played and What We Thought
We found set up simple and play straightforward - and had a laugh with the exercise prompts.
After playing our first time, my daughter was not eager to play again, but my youngest son asked me to play multiple times and enjoyed the game.
When I asked both children for their feedback for this review, they gave very different thoughts.
My daughter said:
Math Sprint is a game board with flashcards to help kids practice addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
The game board looks like a race track.
It has some prompts for exercises every so often - like standing on one leg - and multiple starting lines with one finish lines. There are eight lanes for players.
Each player uses a plastic running figure to mark their place on the board.
To play, if you get a question right, you move forward. If you don't, you don't move forward.
There are also a dry erase marker and cards. You can use these to figure out problems, to write down problems you had trouble with, or to make your own silly game cards.
I did not really like this game, because it was kind of just doing flashcards with a board. I would not recommend it as a fun game, but it could be good if you have to do the problems anyways.
Obviously, she is not a fan. She found the game a bit too simple in design and also does not tend to prefer things that require instant recall. With this in mind, I might suggest that this game be modified when played with children challenged by memory issues, dyscalculia, etc. Perhaps using a timer and some manipulatives to help children figure out problems when mental math is too hard and, then, having the children write their answers on the dry erase cards, with every child who writes a correct answer by the time the timer runs out being able to advance, could work.
(I know this might defeat the intent of mental math - but it would still allow for math practice)
My youngest son, on the other hand, who likes speedy competition, said:
My sister, mom, and I played Math Sprint for this review.
I liked how it had you think quickly with the cards and how there are different lengths on the board that you can play.
One thing I did not like about it is that it is not as fun to play with two people. To help this, we counted down when playing with two of us, giving me 10 seconds to answer and Mom only 5.
I would recommend the game to people who are learning multiplication and practicing math facts. It is a basic game, but can be fun for those who like think quickly like me. I like it!
As for my take on the game, I:
- love that it is made for kids by a kid.
- find the cards, game board, etc. sturdy and well made.
- like that it has options for different playing times, levels of math skill, etc.
- am delighted that one of my children likes it, but can see why another did not.
- appreciate it as a resource to help children practice mental math abilities.
- can see myself using the board for other practice (such as phonogram, spelling, and word reading drill with young tutoring students).
- picture the sturdy playing cards being used for self drill by children who like flashcard type learning.
If you'd like to learn what other families thought about as they experiences playing Math Sprint, see 40 blog, social media, and video reviews by clicking through links at the Homeschool Review Crew.