Monday, June 21, 2010

The Critical Thinking Co. Balance Benders

Balance Benders

I recently reviewed Balance Benders (beginning level), which is  published by the Critical Thinking Company.

We have used my Critical Thinking Co. products over the years and loved them all, so I was eager to get a look at Balance Benders.

Balance Benders are fun logic problems that use algebraic principles. The students must analyze each balance scale, then solve equations using the information from the balance. Only shapes are used on the scale and in the exercises.

Emily really enjoyed using this book. At 10 years old, the beginning level was just right for her. I suspect that it would be too difficult for most second graders (the recommended lowest age for this product). She is moving through it quickly, but we were both glad that the problems started out fairly easy for her. We did the puzzles together orally so that we could talk through them and so that I could make sure that she wasn’t just guessing the answers. I wanted to make sure she thoroughly understood the concepts before she got to the more difficult pages. I think these puzzles will really help her understand algebraic concepts before she ever uses them with numbers!

Balance Benders comes in four levels, covering grades 2 through 12. Each level sells for $9.99. We look forward to trying out more of them!

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The Critical Thinking Co. has asked me to mention their Critical Thinking Heroes Award. Do you know someone who inspires a thinking approach to teaching? Nominate them for this award, which features a $500 prize and national recognition. Visit here for the details.

Would you like to win $500 of Critical Thinking Co. products? The company is running a video contest—submit a short video of a learning experience using a Critical Thinking Co. product. Every participant will win all three levels of Dr. Funster’s Word Benders!

This is a Mama Buzz review. The product was provided by The Critical Thinking Company  for this review.

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