Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Hello? Math911? This is an Emergency!


Cast of Characters:
Desperate Mother (DM)
911 Dispatcher (911)

One morning around 10am:
DM: Dials the phone. *Ring* *Ring*
911: Hello. This is 911. What is your emergency?
DM: Hello 911! I need help!
911: Stay calm, ma'am. What is the state of your injury?
DM: Oh, I'm not injured. It's my son!
911: Is your son in a safe place ma'am?
DM: Well, I suppose he much as a kitchen chair can be safe, at least.
911: Does he seem to be breathing.
DM: Well, I can't really tell. Let me see. (Looks closely at her son) I believe he is taking breaths between the gulps of his cereal.
911: Is he bleeding anywhere?
DM: No. I don't see any blood.
911: Does he have any pain?
DM: Hold on and let me ask...(muffled voice) Dear? The nice lady on the other end of the phone wants to know if you are hurting anywhere. (back to regular voice) He says he feels fine.
911: Well, then ma'am, what exactly is the state of your emergency?
DM: Well, it's his math. He is having a horrible time of it. Nothing we've tried works. I was talking to a friend and...(interrupted by dispatcher)
911: (in exasperated voice) Ma'am! Ma'am! You do realize that this is 911 and is to only be used for real emergencies, don't you?
DM: (in huffy voice) Are you saying that my son's math education is not an emergency?
911: Well, no ma'am, I'm sure it is, but this is supposed to be used for...
DM: (interrupting) I mean, my friend, Babs, said to call Math911 and they could help. Is this not Math911?
911: No ma'am, this is just regular 911 and is supposed to be used for emergencies that are of a life and death nat...
DM: Babs told me that this is a wonderful program that you download on your computer. She said that the TOS Review Crew reviewed it and that hunk, Tim Tinkel, was one of the reviewers. Tim Tinkel is a real hunk you know?
911: Well, I'm sure he is, but...
DM: She said it would help my Johnny with his algebra. He's having a horrible time. He's always been good at math, but all of a sudden highschool advanced math has really stumped him. Babs said that Math911 is wonderful and could actually be used as a the main curriculum or as a tutorial along side of another curriculum.
911: That sounds wonderful, ma'am, but we really must free this line for...
DM: And I just can't seem to help my Johnny - math was never my thing you know? He has a terrible time Graphing Linear Inequalities in Two Variables and...
911: Really? My Sarah has a difficult time with those as well but it's the monomials that really...
DM: Oh! Don't you know it! Babs said that Math911 could help with all of that! She said that this program goes from Introductory Algebra all the way up to Trigonometry, Pre Calculus and Statistics.
911: WOW! That sounds wonderful! Sarah gets so discouraged when she sees her grades and the big red x's over the wrong answers.
DM: Well, that's the thing that Babs said was so wonderful about this program. The student doesn't get graded for wrong answers, they only get graded for the right answers. If they answer something wrong then that type of problem keeps coming up until they master it. It's so neat.
911: But is it easy to use? Some of these programs are so convoluted and hard to use that you get even more upset and discouraged by trying to use them.
DM: Oh, don't I know it. But Babs said that this was super easy to use. The student just logs into his page...multiple students can use the same program you know?...and they just click on the section that they want more help on. They can go in order or skip around. Each section has eight levels in it going from easy problems to difficult problems. The only thing that they can't do is skip around levels. They have to master that level before they can move up.
911: That does sound easy. I wonder if they have to have any special know...some of those math symbols can't be recreated on a regular keyboard.
DM: Not according to Babs. I asked the same thing and she said that if you can't find a symbol on the keyboard then they provide it for you on the screen and you just click on it!
911: But what if they have difficulty in an area. Do they explain how to work the problem or just leave the student to fend for themselves.
DM: Babs said that Math911 has thought of everything! All the student has to do is click on the "See Solution" button and it tells you step by step how to work it out! They even provide a calculator if your computer doesn't have one. I know that this will be so wonderful for our homeschool.
911: Oh! There you have it! I knew it was too good to be true. My Sarah goes to public school and...
DM: Not a problem at all! Babs said that they have something called a "Flash Drive" version that you can take with you to school. Everything is kept on a little thing that you plug into your computer. You can work on it at home and then take it to school with you and work on it there. Nothing goes on a computer, so you don't have to worry about that. It's all kept in that little Flash Drive gadget.
911: Wow! they have thought of everything. I'll have to get that for my Sarah. I'm sure they are super expensive, though.
DM: That's just the thing. I called to see if you could help me find the web address.
911: (gasps and realizes where she is) Well, ma'am, I'm sure if you google it you can find the address. I really must go. Another emergency call is coming in.

Two Weeks Later:

911: Hello, 911 what is your emergency.
Not so Desperate Mother anymore (NDM): Hello, I'm looking for that really nice lady that I talked to a couple of weeks ago.
911: Ma'am, we have a lot of really nice folks that work here. Can you tell me what your emergency was. Tell me who was injured.
NDM: Oh, no one was injured.
911: Well, ma'am, we only deal with emergencies here. Can you tell me what the emergency was?
NDM: It was my son Johnny. He was having a terrible time with algebra and I needed some information on Math911...
911: Oh, your the Math911 lady? Well, the person you talked to was Mary Ellen and she quit working here about a week ago saying she was going to go around telling everyone about some wonderful math program. She said that when she went to look at the price she couldn't believe it! A limited time offer of only $9.95 for the Algebra Flashdrive. She said that they also offer a free download of the Intro Algebra program with the option of paying $49.95 for the Premier Version that contains all of the Math911 upper level math courses!
NDM: I couldn't believe it either. It was so easy to download and use. I was a bit skeptical about the whole thing until I read that it has been used since 1989 in schools! That's a long time. But then I downloaded it and it has made a world of difference with my Johnny. He is now understanding algebra better than ever. We've been using it alongside his regular curriculum and they are working hand in hand wonderfully. I just wish that my cousin Freda could use it with her kids, but they don't have a computer that runs Windows and Math911 only comes in a Windows version.
911: Well, we do have windows and I was thinking about getting it for my Tommy. He...

Yes, you too, could enjoy the wonders of Math911 with your family. All you have to do is click
here or on any one of the hi-lighted links above to find out more. Other members of the TOS Crew reviewed Math911 and you can find what they had to say by clicking here. Happy Homeschooling!
The story you have just read is true. The names have been changed to protect the innocent.
Oh, ok, it's about John Allen and there really was no 911 call. We do, however, love Math911 and everything that was said is true. It really is a fantastic program!
Disclaimer: As a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew I was given a free download of Math911 in order to use and give my honest review on this blog.

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