Josh and Dawn Denberg, the creators of the incredible free app ModMath, don’t consider themselves education technology gurus, teachers or even mathematicians. Nevertheless, they recognized the glaring need for a technology that assists students who are struggling with writing difficulties. Their son has dysgraphia — a learning disability that affects written expression — making it a challenge to use handwriting to solve math problems. While students can easily understand the concepts behind the math, if they can’t write the formula down legibly, it’s pretty hard to solve it!
ModMath was created to address this very real problem, as dysgraphia affects many students with autism, ADHD and other learning difficulties. The app serves as a tool and resource for students, not as a calculator. The app won’t solve a math problem for you. It will however assist in the set-up of the problem, in a digital-grid like format, that works for any student struggling with writing.
Fine motor skills, like writing, greatly impact a student’s ability to learn math. When it comes to math, keeping numbers in the right columns, staying in-line during long division, dealing with decimals and carrying the numbers over all present challenges. With ModMath, that handwriting roadblock has been completely eliminated, and kids can focus on the real task at hand – learning math.
ModMath is currently being used in 99 countries and has been downloaded hundreds of thousands of times on iTunes. Just this year, ModMath saw a 90% increase year-over-year in users. At the request of teachers, parents and districts, ModMath will soon be making some upgrades and launching a new version. The app will become available on iOS, Android and Chromebook. Students will be able to integrate ModMath with Dropbox for easy collaboration on assignments with their teachers. They even plan to add a feature enabling students to upload a photo of a math problem directly into ModMath.
Listen now as Josh shares with Huzefa the story behind this amazing app, the overwhelmingly positive feedback received to date, and plans for continually improving ModMath.
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