• Cyberchase Leads Students Though Math Topics, Adventures

    Cyberchase, an award winning TV show and website from PBS Kids, brings to life a wide range of difficult-to-grasp math concepts.   In reviewing Study Island data on math, we see that estimating, factors and multiples, number relationships and real world problems pose some of the more difficult challenges for third through fifth grade students. In the Cyberchase story line, a group of cartoon characters (Matt, Jackie and Inez) help Motherboard to overcome the evil Hacker, and his henchmen, Buzz and Delete.  Matt, Jackie and Inez must solve a series of math problems to overcome the Hacker. 
    In the main segment of episode #306, "The Grapes of Plath," the characters show how to estimate in a story set in Crab Kingdom.  In the Cyberchase for Real part of the episode, real world character Harry estimates the number of dinner specials to make at a restaurant. 
    To view this episode from Cyberchase.org, go to Videos, then Season Three, then Full Episode #306, "The Grapes of Plath." 

    Here's the initial link to the website:
    "The Grapes of Plath" episode pairs well with an online game on the Cyberchase website- Glowla's Estimation Contraption.  In the game, students from third grade estimate the addends, then the sums of addition problems.  When making a ballpark estimate in this game, remember to round to the nearest 10 if the number is in the tens, and round to the nearest 100 if the number is in the hundreds.  Glowla's Estimation Contraption is available on Cyberchase.org, the TV show's companion website.
    Here's the direct navigation to Glowla's Estimation Contraption:
    Students might view episode #108, "And They Counted Happily Ever After," to gain a deeper understanding of place value.  From the main page of Cyberchase.org, the episode is found under Videos, then Season 1:
    Here's the navigation to Hacker's Number Machine, a place value game from Cyberchase.org:
    Other episodes that help to build understanding of difficult math topics, include: "The Icky Factor," #402, on factors and multiples; and episode #605, "Step by Step," on how to solve multiple-step, real world problems by breaking those problems into smaller parts.
    Cyberchase Episodes Listed
    Click on the link, below, to find a list of all the Cyberchase episode numbers and their topics.  Season 1 episodes are in the one hundreds, season 2 episodes are in the two hundreds, and so on:
    To build strength in math, visit Cyberchase.org to play web games and view the videos. All of the Cyberchase online math games are tied to standards approved by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM).