APH Practice 2 Master Fractions iOS App: Review

Practice 2 Master Fractions is a new math app by APH. This accessible app was created to help students with visual impairments or blindness to practice adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing math fractions. Does your student need practice with fractions? This app is a motivating way to complete math fraction equations!

Accessibility

  • The app has large, clear numbers for students with low vision.
  • The app is designed to be fully accessible with VoiceOver, the iPad's native screen reader.
    • NOTE: If VoiceOver announces the math symbols (such as addition and equals) as 'space', there is a solution. In your rotor, set punctuation to Some Punctuation. If your punctuation is set to No Puncutation, in iOS 11, math symbols are not announced correctly. You can add Punctuation to your rotor by going to Settings > General > Accessibility > VoiceOver > Rotor.
  • Practice 2 Master Fractions can be used with or without VoiceOver.

Navigating the Equation

While the buttons are self-explanatory, students may need to be prompted on how to navigate the numbers to complete the equations. The app was carefully designed for students with visual impairments; VoiceOver will read the entire number in one chunk; however, when editing the numbers, each section (whole number, numerator and denominator) are broken into individual chunks. Example: 8 1/2 is announced as "eight and 1 over 2".

screenshot of Practice2Master Fractions app with equation 8 1/2 + 6 5/6 =

When in editing mode, VoiceOver announces the number and the position of the number. Example: If the VoiceOver focus is on 8, VoiceOver announces "8, whole number".

screenshot of Practice 2 Master Fractions in Edit mode with VO focus on the Whole Number 8.

Double tap on the 8 and a numeric keyboard appears at the bottom of the screen. (Buttons 1-5, Delete are in the top row; buttons 6-9,0, Done are in the second row.)

screenshot of Practice 2 Master Math with Edit mode on 8 and virtual numeric keyboard displayed.

It is recommended that students use a Split Tap when navigating around the screen. (Drag one finger to the desired location then drop another finger to activate.) Remember, the POWER of using a touch screen is the ability to drag your finger around and know where you are on the screen. When a student uses the swipe gesture, he/she loses the spatial relationships. The Split Tap gesture provides spatial relationships - which are critical in math, especially when editing numbers in a fraction!

When adding fractions, students should convert the denominators (so that both denominators are the same). The tricky part for some students is remembering what number they multiplied the denominator by so that they can multiple the numerator by the same number. Once a number is edited, there is not a way to view the original number - while keeping the edited number - the student must remember the number! Note: The Undo Changes button will go reverse the last edited number before the Done button is activated. Once the Done button is activated, the Cancel button will reset the the last edited mixed number back to it's original number. However, if more than one of the mixed numbers are edited, the Cancel button will only reset the last edited mixed numeral. The first edited number will remained changed. Example: In the sample equation above, if both the 8 1/2 is edited and then the 6 5/6 is edited, the Cancel button will only reset the 6 5/6 mixed numeral. Ideally, there would be a way to view both the original number and the second step with the edited number at the same.

Only one line of the equation is available on the screen, meaning that if a student has to carry a number he/she has to do that part of the equation in his head. Example: 14 8/6 will convert to 15 2/6, then 15 1/3. Most students will need to edit the number twice - unless he/she can do one step in his/her head. The app does allow for students to tap the Done button after each step and then double tap to edit again to do the second step. The problem is not completed until the student activates the Submit button. 

While working through the problem, the student can go back and listen to any number displayed on the screen again.

Settings

There are numerous options available in the Practice 2 Math Fractions settings.

  • Select an operation (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division or combination of these)
  • Generate problems with common denominators (yes or no)
  • Answers need to be simplified (yes or no)
  • Choose which denominators are used in calculation problems (up to #36)
  • Allow mixed numbers (yes or no)
  • Do not generate problems whose answers are improper fractions (on/off)
  • For answered to be correct, improper fractions should be written as mixed numbers (yes or no)
  • Number of problems are in a drill? (5 - 35)
  • Get comments during free practice (yes or no)
  • Show timer when drilling (yes or no)
  • Change font color
  • Change font size

Summary

The Math Fractions App is a great tool to teach and practice completing math fraction equations! The app is clearly designed for all users, including users who are low vision or who rely on VoiceOver. Some students might have a slight learning curve on consciously remembering individual numbers as they complete the equations; however, many students will  remember the numbers and will complete some steps in their head. If you are working on fractions, this app is a winner! 

Practice 2 Master Fractions in the App Store.

Collage of Practice2Master

Embed Video: 

Comments

Posted by Diane BraunerJun 13, 2018

UPDATE about VoiceOver bug

NOTE: If VoiceOver announces the math symbols (such as addition and equals) as 'space', there is a solution. In your rotor, set punctuation to Some Punctuation. If your punctuation is set to No Puncutation, in iOS 11, math symbols are not announced correctly. You can add Punctuation to your rotor by going to Settings > General > Accessibility > VoiceOver > Rotor.

Add new comment

Read more about: Math, Assistive Technology