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Key Software [1]
ZX Spectrum 48K

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Rosetta McLeod
Chris Bourne

The title may be rather uninspired, but this program provides a very effective means of teaching both the basic concept of fractions and the way a fraction is represented by numbers. There are actually three short programs on the tape, taking the child through the concept step-by-step.

Bits and Pieces begins by using shapes to demonstrate the idea of a fraction as part of a whole. The screen is laid out with a text window alongside a fractions window, and the moving graphics (showing a whole ball splitting into halves, quarters and so on) are a visually effective teaching aid.

Tops and Bottoms goes on to display this information in terms of numerators and denominators, again using shape to demonstrate the use of numbers to represent fractions.

The last program, Match Them, is a nice little game which tests the child on the knowledge gained in the previous programs. The idea is to choose the correct fraction from those displayed to match the pictured shape. There are three levels of difficulty to choose from, and at the end of the game a printout of the score can be obtained.

Fractions is an extremely helpful tool for teaching an important area of mathematics, with colour and large print being used to very good effect.


Control keys: mainly ENTER and SPACE
Keyboard play: good
Graphics: very good indeed
Use of colour: bright and extremely effective
General Rating: An appealing program, very well structured, which brings alive the concept of fractions. Unlike most programs on this topic, which only reinforce knowledge already acquired, this program is a true teaching aid. Definitely value for money.

Not Rated