Wednesday, June 21, 2017

UnLock Math (Homeschool Review Crew)



Math. Not the most favorite subject in our homeschool. For Josiah it’s challenging and can be frustrating. I’m always trying to figure out what I can do to help make things stick for him. One of the benefits of our modern day homeschooling are the wonderful options creative folks put out there for kids like Josiah. One such program is UnLock Math. We recently had the chance to review UnLock Pre-Algebra 






True story. If you have a child (like my son) who struggles with Dyscalculia or Dyslexia you are always on the hunt for anything…anything…to help them along. I always despair that there are math concepts that we have completely missed or glossed over because I was worried about the big picture.


UnLock Math is an online computer program takes the student through step by step each concept. You obviously will need a computer with a good internet connection and speakers or headphones. I can also tell you that Maple T.A., the program that UnLock Math uses doesn't  really like Microsoft Edge. It prefers Chrome, Firefox or a newer version of Internet Explorer. Our desktop computer uses Edge and we didn't have too many glitches, but I did tell a difference when Josiah worked on the laptop with Chrome.

UnLock Math is specifically designed to break math into doable bite sized bits that build upon each other.  It is intended to reduce math anxiety. So far, we've UnLock Math has delivered on its promises. Josiah can work through the lessons as many times as needed...and only the very BEST scores are recorded.  Which is a BIGGIE for him. 

I want to show you how it all works.

You can see from this screen shot provided for us that the bottom screen has tiny little rockets. You can activate a unit by clicking on the title, but you reach the unit by clicking on the rocket. The screen also provides progress reports and a handy colored graph to measure progress.


When you get into the unit it takes you this screen. Here, Josiah can get to each lesson and complete any quizzes and tests assigned. I can also see from this that he has yet to complete ALL the assignments for this unit. Hmm.


Now my FAVORITE part of the program is right here. You parents with kiddos who have spatial issues and trouble staying on course will understand. All they have to do is follow the trail to complete each assignment. Brilliant.
 Another Brilliant thing are the videos. They are short and to the point. They can be watched repeatedly and keep things moving. Can I say that I needed these, as well? It's been a long time since College Algebra, my friends. There are also fun elements to some of the videos. Alesia keeps it exciting. And she has a delightful Canadian accent. 


This screen is one of the PRACTICE PROBLEMS from the place value lesson. There weren't very many problems. Just enough to see if the student was getting the concept.

 The next little stop on the path to victory is a STAY SHARP section. These are review questions.  I'm sorry you can't see the screen shot better. I'm sure, however, you can't miss the pink notice telling me it doesn't care for Microsoft Edge. But DO notice all of the white space. Only one problem at a time. There aren't a lot of flashy distractions. This is the BEST scenario for a student like mine. 
 One other little stop in the road is a CHALLENGE YOURSELF question.  These can be kind of tricky for my dyslexic student. I usually had to "help." The reading isn't tough...it just requires a bit more thought.

The REFERENCE NOTES are simply the lesson in a PDF form. In fact, you can print the WHOLE set off in one fell swoop if you so choose. 


Instant Gratification! This handy screen comes up whenever the student completes a lesson. 


Another great thing about UnLock Math is all the helps. The site is extremely well organized and easy to navigate. This is a PDF of a suggested pace for the lessons. I used this to get an idea on how long I should plan for each Unit. 

Of course, everything is graded and stored for you. The grades set as follows. 

  • Quizzes are 15% of the final grade
  • Tests are 30% of the final grade
  • Midterm exam is 5% of the final grade
  • Final Exam is 10% of the final grade. 
Just a word to the wise. Go through the lessons with your kiddo a time or two to make sure he or she is hitting all the right buttons. During the practice problems in particular Josiah would hit "Submit answers" instead of "Next." Needless to say he had to redo a few lessons. 

This program is not just for students are mathematically challenged...every student can benefit. It's just that good. 

The bottom line is that this is a user-friendly program. I found it well organized and provided the kind of "underwhelming" instruction my son needs. Just a little "bite" at a time. 

UnLock Math offers Pre-Algebra through Geometry (a brand new course!) There is a FREE demo available just for you to try. Check it out! 

You can connect with UnLock Math via the following social media outlets. Don't forget to click on the banner below for more reviews. 





  • Facebook:  https://facebook.com/UnLockMath    Tag:   @UnLockMath   




  • Twitter:  https://twitter.com/UnLockMath    Tag:   @UnLockMath   
  • Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/UnLockMath            Tag:   @UnLockMath   




  • Pre-Algebra, Algebra and Geometry {UnLock Math Reviews}
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