I love it when I’m testing out a highly educational app and my sons both stand watching behind me in awe, before grabbing the phone so that they can play it themselves. Flip4Gold is a free dice app (actually reminiscent of a bar game that I played for hours at a beach bar in Belize!) that reinforces math skills for kids… and adults. There are two levels of the game – a Jr. version for 5-7 year olds (which is also available for android), and the original, which my 8 year old loves and I found myself playing for hours.
The game was created by a Chartered Accountant and mom of four, with the help of her four daughters to make math fun for everyone and to take away the stigma of “I’m bad at math” or “I’m not a numbers person.”
The Flip4Gold game involves a series of levels and math challenges, devised by Quatro, the Lemur King as he attempts to protect his treasure. Fun and motivating badges are awarded throughout the journey!
At the simplest level, there are tiles from 1-9, and when you press the button to roll the dice, an addition problem appears. At the outset, the answer is given to you on the right side of the screen, and as you graduate to higher levels with up to 12 tiles, you must do the calculations yourself. I found that visualizing the dots on the dice and translating them into actual numbers used my math skills in two different ways.
There are four different worlds – Shipwreck, Mangrove Forest, Mountain’s Edge and Quatro’s Kingdom, with 4 challenges in each. As you move through the challenges you are awarded stars and points, and as you attain mastery you are given access to the next level, and then to the next world. As the game grows more challenging, there are two rows of tiles up to 12, and when you roll the dice you may be given an addition, subtraction, multiplication or division question. Like the lower levels, the answer is available to you at first and then as you progress, you must do the mental calculation on your own.
The badges were a very cool part of the game, and I attained a few in my time playing (my son will beat me any minute!). You can see all of the badges you have earned from the home screen. Additionally from this screen, you can create ‘Free Play’ with your own game parameters for your child in order to focus on what they do best, or what needs a little work. You can pick a number of rows, columns, dice, mathematical operators, rerolls and wildcards. My sons are both learning their times tables at the moment, so this we a fantastic addition for us! Here’s a cute snapchat video of my playing the game. And yes… some problems took me a tad longer than others!
The only frustrating part for me was that the game involves a combination of luck as well as skill, and it would have taken me many more hours to reach the highest levels as is with most video games. The benefit of this, however, is that it will keep your child playing the game so that their math becomes quicker while they are advancing and coming closer to reach Quattro’s gold.
We give the app a big thumbs up, and I will continue to update this article to share what happens when I reach Quatro’s gold!! (Unless you do first. I may need to brush up on my math – an easy task now that I’ve discovered Flip4Gold!). Oh – and it’s available for both tablet and phone, so you and your kids can both up your math game.
Disclosure: This post was generously sponsored by Flip4Gold. All opinions, gameplay and difficulties with addition and subtraction are strictly my own.