I love math, and I always consider it as an essential life skill. And like any other skills, the more you practice the better you are going to be in math.
Today I would like to share a brand new app from Spinlight Studios for juniors ages six and up to practice basic math operations. Titled YodelOh Math Mountain, the app is a sequel to the successful YodelOh Classic, an arcade-style polka tapping game.
YodelOh Math Mountain
YodelOh Math Mountain uses the same settings as its prequel app. Here, you answer multiple choice math questions to prevent a cute Bavarian character named Hans from falling off a cliff.
Each question has five options, and tapping the correct one will keep Hans at his place. On the other hand, choosing an incorrect answer will move him up and closer to the edge of the cliff.
Since this is a fast-paced game, failing to provide an answer within a few seconds will cause the app to choose an incorrect answer for you. The app will advance to the next question if you manage to answer correctly or if you fail to answer a question three times.
As you try to solve these math problems, occasionally a few sheep will run uphill and try to push Hans off the cliff. In order to prevent this, you need to tap each sheep before it hits him. If you manage to hit several sheep in a row, you will get a bonus point.
You also have to watch out for a friendly maid that you must avoid tapping, otherwise the game will count this as an error on your part and move Hans closer to the cliff. Because the maid figures are positioned a layer above the sheep, it can be quite challenging to avoid the maids while hitting the sheep.
The objective of this game is not about staying alive for as long as you can, rather it is about getting the highest possible score before Hans falls off the cliff. That is why the game features many bonuses along the way.
You get a bonus for levelling up and for making a perfect streak. There is also a bonus round each time you accumulated 2,500 points, and even a green bonus sign that lets you move Hans back away from the edge of the cliff.
The game keeps track of the 15 highest scores for each game mode: addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and mixed operations. This makes the game playable by multiple players sharing the same iPad, such as math students in a classroom setting. To keep you motivated, the game also displays the highest score for each game mode on the main screen.
Parents Need to Know
Since YodelOh Math Mountain is an arcade-style math game, your juniors need to be familiar with basic math operations first. This is not an app that teaches concepts, rather it is an app for practicing skills in a really fun and engaging way.
The addition and subtraction problems in the app are limited to binomial ones involving numbers from 1 to 20, whereas the multiplication and division ones involve numbers from 1 to 12. Since these game modes are designed to be played separately, it allows you to personalize your junior’s learning experience by focusing on the skills that they need to practice.
Because there are plenty of things going on at the same time, it might be best to accompany your juniors during their first few plays. The difficulty levels are designed to gradually increase as you get more comfortable with the game, but when you reach a certain point you are required to multitask between doing mental calculation and tapping on the running sheep.
Sometimes you also need to prioritize, for example tapping on the 100-point level up bonus first and letting the sheep hit Hans, or tapping the green sign bonus to move Hans backward before solving the math problem.
When things get really difficult, you may even have to rely on your hearing to tell when the sheep is coming. Getting juniors to use their visual, hearing, and mental calculation at the same time makes this game an awesome way to let them practice their brain, body, and senses coordination.
Things I Like
The fast-paced arcade-style aspect of YodelOh Math Mountain really makes it addictive. You can either play to aim for a high score or to see how long you can survive in the game. The fact that the difficulty level increases as the game progresses makes it challenging even for more mature players.
I really like the way the bonuses are designed in this game. I believe they keep the gameplay from becoming boring. Aside from the green bonus sign that lets you prolong the game, all the other bonuses are there to distract you from your effort to survive. Instead, they drive you to aim for the highest possible score.
Another thing that I notice is the layout design for the virtual keyboard that you use to type your name in the leader board. Instead of going with the standard QWERTY keyboard, the developers use a custom ABCDEF keyboard where the keys are arranged to resemble the sequence of the alphabet. The decision may make us pause to think, but it does make it easier for younger juniors to find the letters they are looking for.
YodelOh Math Mountain is an awesome arcade game that lets your juniors drill their basic math skills. With plenty of game elements gradually introduced as you progress, the app is challenging even for older juniors.
If you are looking for an app to make your juniors practice math skills enthusiastically on their own, I strongly recommend YodelOh Math Mountain. You will thank the developers for it.
App was provided for our honest review.