Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978

Montessori 1st Operations

Montessori 1st Operations

Fall 2013 Mobile Apps
Ages: 5 - 7 yrs.
Download Price: $3.99
Platform: iPad

Montessori 1st Operations by Les Trois Elles is a comprehensive math learning tool that uses the Montessori approach to math skills development. Extensive notes to parents make clear the prerequisites for introducing this app to a young child. The ability to count and recognize number 1 through 10 is the only requirement. The creators of the app indicate that they have developed a specific algorithm that enables the app to follow children individually allowing them to progress at their own pace.

The product is intended for a large audience. It is available in eleven languages, for starters, and parents can adjust the range of numbers covered. Set the app with a number limit of 10 for little ones, and 99 for tweens.

The start page shows three monster characters holding addition, subtraction and division symbols. For the addition segment, a question is presented verbally and with bars of blue and red squares. The user is to select from a list of numbers and corresponding red and blue squares the answer to the problem. Each one of these basic math skills is presented in 3 unique interfaces, all clear and uncluttered. Three simple icons direct the user to return to home, repeat the current activity, or get help. To reward those users who choose correct answers, there is a point system that lets them buy monster parts to create their own monsters.

Montessori 1st Operations offers a charming way for young ones to master math operations. Creative touches that make good use of the iPad's technology, such as a game that allows users to answer math questions by how many fingers they place on the screen, distinguish it from similar apps. This is a well-designed app that will certainly aid the development of early math skills.

Kristin Harris   ©2013 Parents' Choice
Kristin Reiber Harris is an artist, animator and educator who has created over 50 short form animations with a focus on educational media for young children. Her work has been broadcast on HBO Family and screened in numerous film festivals around the country. She is currently developing interactive media introducing young children to great works of art through stories. Kristin writes about her interests in kids, art and technology at

Look for this product at:
Les Trois Elles Interactive
Available on iTunes

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