This article is in collaboration with Mad Dog Math.
Mad Dog Math was developed by a 3rd grade teacher, Julie Kotoff, twenty-five years ago to help her class to master their multiplication and division facts. As a school administrator, she took that system and expanded it to include addition and subtraction as well. Her beautiful Golden Retriever Ruff serves as the mascot of the program.
Originally a daily paper & pencil drill, Mad Dog Math has grown in this digital age, and is now available as a computerized version. Meant to be done for ten minutes a day as a supplement to any math curriculum, it is intended for kindergarten thru 5th grades, and can certainly be used with older children as well.
Each child progresses through a series of short, timed practice sheets. It is paced individually — if he passes (misses two or fewer problems), he moves to the next set of facts, if he does not pass, he works on that same set again.
There are three levels, plus a challenge level. Each level is intended to be done over a school year. Each worksheet consists of twenty math problems (Levels 1-2) or twenty-four problems (Level 3 and the Challenge Level), and if done in order, the child would alternate between addition and subtraction (Levels 1-2) or multiplication and division (Level 3).
- Level 1 is addition and subtraction, and starts off with the 0-3 facts. This would indicate answers… so it would include facts like 0+0 and 1+2. All answers will be 0, 1, 2 or 3. The sheets continue to progress through levels, so the next level (after mastering addition, then subtraction) would be 1-4, then 2-5. The final level is for 12-18 facts. There is a lot of review built into this level.
- Level 2 is addition and subtraction also, starting off with the 0-6 facts. The facts continue through the final level, which is the 18 facts. This level would include subtraction facts such as 18-3 and 18-12.
- Level 3 is multiplication and division. This level has a fair amount of review built in, and starts with the 2 facts, ending with the 0-12 facts.
- Challenge Level has all of the operations in each worksheet. This level starts off with a worksheet that includes the 2 fact family for multiplication/division and the 0-6 facts for addition/subtraction. It ends with the 12’s for multiplication/division and the 18’s for addition/subtraction.
The idea behind the program is that you start your child at the appropriate level, set the time allowed to two minutes, and have them work through all of the worksheets at that two minute time. At the end of that, they earn a Student Club Sticker for the “2-Minute Club.” At that point, you have the student go back to the beginning of that level, choosing the one minute time. Completing everything earns them a “1-Minute Club” sticker. Then, the go through a final time, this time setting the timer at the 30 second mark. When they pass all of the drills at this time, they will earn a “30 Second Club” sticker, and be a Mad Dog Math Top Dog. At that point, they can move to the next level.
Mad Dog Math is available for Windows only, and it will track multiple students through all of the levels. You can try it out for free at their website, and that gives you access to the first fact family in all three of the levels.
Members of The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Crew have been using this program with their families for the past six weeks. Click the link below to find out how this has worked in their homes!
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For visitors to view the list of reviews, and for Crew Members to enter your links, please Click here .
Special thanks to First Mate Debra from Footprints in the Butter for writing this article.