Whatsapp and Mathletics websites don’t really have much in common, but I’m bundling them together because I can!

The boys school encourages the kids to use the Mathletics website, and I absolutely LOVE it. Granted I haven’t really been involved in them playing on the site much, we try leave them as much as we can. But this week, Bradley was very upset because he’s been stuck on a section for ages and he thought that I was too busy to help him. Cue the guilt trip, but anyhoo!

So, I duly sat with him on this section. Turns out that he’s stuck on a concept that they haven’t learnt in school yet, and he hadn’t been able to work it out. I sat with him for over an hour, showing him a method that would work, and as the section got more complex, expanding the method with him so that he could figure it out. He’s told me tonight, that he’s now stuck somewhere else, and he needs my help with complex decimals! Help me! LOL!

There are a few things I love about Mathletics:

1. The kids are encouraged to play there from Grade 1.
2. There’s built in gamification. Everything is points driven, and with those points you can “buy” cool backgrounds and beef up your profile. The teachers at the school get reports every week with the kids progress and at our kids school, the kids with the most points that week are rewarded in assembly!
3. It’s not a threatening environment. If the kids feel they can do better, they can choose to redo the section. Bradley got one answer wrong in a test, and was determined to do the whole thing again, just so that he could get more points… because by then he’d worked out how to do it.
4. Bradley is a bit of a whizz at maths and is not often challenged in class… this is getting him to think! It’s getting him to learn, and he loves it!
5. Connor doesn’t have the concentration span that Bradley has, but he’s loving being able to do something that his brother does at school too, so that eggs him on.
6. They’re playing against kids in other schools around the world… it’s fabulous competition!

It’s an all round win-win! And it gets them to play something that’s not on XBox 😉

Anyway, enough about maths and onto chatting!

Bradley got a phone just before he turned 10. It was a complete and utter waste of money on our part. Until very recently, it’s been used solely as a gaming console. He had a few friends that he spoke to, but he mostly used it to contact us when he remembered he had a phone.

However, Grade 5 and 11 seems to be the magic number. All of a sudden his WeChat and Whatsapp is alive. He’s been added to a few chat groups on both platforms… and he’s now listening to CliffCentral on Wechat too!

If you’re horrified… we do have access to his device, and we encourage him to tell us what’s going on. He has been given strict guidelines… and he understands the concept of privacy etc.

Tonight’s conversation with him was enlightening though, and made me silently groan.

His teacher had a chat to the class today about the use of SMS speak… she told them there was no need for all the abbreviations with the smart devices they all have. She told them that she had a spy and that she could tell what they were saying.

I applaud her for trying. I cannot stand SMS-speak. I hate all the acronyms, and I agree that there’s absolutely no need for it! OK, maybe not completely 😉 I also use some shortened phrases, but it’s not my entire sentence.

However, I’m not sure this spy thing she alluded to, was very wise. It seems that tonight there’s a bit of discussion about who that spy may be. They seem to be proving their worth by adding more SMS-speak to their sentences just to prove that they’re not “it”! So I reckon her little ploy failed.

How on earth do you stop it though?