Elementary Spotlight: Math


Early math skills—such as number sense, number relations, pattern identification, estimation, and measurement—are the foundation for future math achievement. By mastering these basic concepts, young students can engage in more complex cognitive processing and develop higher-level math skills. Also, early math achievement has been linked to an increased likelihood to take Algebra I by 8th grade and improved PSAT math scores.

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Math Stretch helps young math students master basic number literacy. This fun, engaging, and free app provides a suite of activities to develop elementary math skills and number sense. These activities are great for early math learners in K-3. Teachers in K-5 tell us they love using them as warm-up exercises.

  • Exercises target counting, number relations and operations, and telling and manipulating time.
  • Settings allow students, parents, and teachers to control the level of difficulty for each activity.
  • Practice sessions and completed quizzes can be shared with parents and teachers.

Take a look at some of our favorite activities.

Ordering Numbers

The Ordering Numbers activity challenges students to drag and drop the number tiles into the correct order. Users can adjust the difficulty level of the session by toggling several settings, including number type (whole, decimal, fraction) and range (0-1, 0-10, 0-100, 0-1000).

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Number Comparison

In Number Comparison, students are presented with two numbers and asked to pick the appropriate comparison sign. Again, using the settings function, students can manipulate the range and choose to compare whole numbers, fraction, decimals, or a combination!

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Daily Numbers

Daily Numbers is a great warm-up activity to get students thinking about different representations of numbers, combining math and literacy skills.

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Number Bonds

Number Bonds challenges students to think about the composition of and relationship between numbers. Students can complete the Number Bonds activity either in Addition/Subtraction or Multiplication/Division mode.

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You also have the option of using fractions and decimals in many of the activities. Students can continually challenge themselves by increasing the difficulty level. These features make Math Stretch a useful tool all the way up to middle school math!

Download Math Stretch today through the App Store. And remember, your feedback is very important to us, so if you have an idea for future releases of Math Stretch, let us know!

Also, check out our other elementary math resources:

  • Data Depot. Currently, there are more than 175 data sets in Data Depot, addressing topics in science, social studies, and a variety of other subjects. Use these data sources as the foundation for student inquiries and teacher-created lessons. To help teachers even more, we have created tool-based lessons to take advantage of the data sets. In QL #1554 - M&M'S®: Are the colors evenly distributed?, students learn how to create bar graphs and pie charts from color distribution data sets.
  • Flash Cards. With thousands of decks to choose from, Flash Cards is the perfect app for mastering early math skills from shapes to basic addition, to multiplication tables. Students can create and share their own decks for a customized experience.

About Author

Lucy Kosturko

Lucy Shores Kosturko, PhD manages product development for SAS Institute's K-12 educational initiatives, a suite of cross-platform offerings promoting data literacy, artificial intelligence and computer science. After graduating with a B.A. in psychology and computer science from Rhodes College, she earned a M.S. in computer science and PhD in educational psychology from North Carolina State University. Lucy lives in Raleigh, NC with her husband and two daughters.

1 Comment

  1. Emily Lamphear on

    I honestly think early basic math skills are the most essential part of the math basics. Sadly because we push students so hard in math and that they are required to learn so much in the early years, students loose the basic basic fundamentals and are pushed ahead whether they are ready or not. Math sketch seems like it would be the most beneficial for students at any grade level that are in need of the basic skills and learning fundamentals to make it through math. I feel like we as teachers need to not focus on the what they need to know by the end of the year and what they need to focus on to get them to the end of the year. If you need to spend more time on a topic then do it. Students learn at so many different levels that the need for skills to be available and open for them to practice will help them move along further in class and school.

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