Monday, May 28, 2012

iPad/iPhone app: Numbers Addict Free

Numbers Addict App
Numbers Addict Free app in iTunes

What it is: A simple matching and adding game that could not be more fun (or addicting for that matter). It's reminiscent of Tetris, where balls with numbers (each number has its own color so it's easier to recognize) are stacked along a grid of 5 columns, 8 rows. You can see the next 3 balls that need to be stacked (see screen shot below).

There are 3 difficulty levels, and the "easy" one has no time limit: the balls don't drop until you place them, but a new row of balls appears at the bottom every few rounds. You have to match by number to pop them (remove them from the grid), and you need that number of balls to pop them. So you need two 2's, three 3's, four 4's, etc. to clear them. The first levels start with 1-5, and after a few completed levels you get the 6, then the 7, up to 9. You can also move two balls together to create a ball of the sum: if you move the "2" to the "1", it becomes a light blue "3" ball. The sum has to be within the limit of the highest number on that level (so on a level where you only have 1-5, you cannot make a 6 or above). You're scored by total number popped, so six 6's will give you a higher score than two 2's. There's also a paid ad-free version of this game.
Screen Shot Level 1

How we can use it in Tx: Assume you will only use the "easy" relaxed level that has no time limit, and most likely only the first few rounds of it (where you don't have to match anything above a 5). And let the pt play this game (preferably on a larger device like an iPad). Cue as needed, depending on your goals. In the specific examples section below I make some suggestions.

Goals we can target with this app: Attention and focus, following directions, math, problem-solving, scanning, sequencing, and sorting are the main ones.

Specific examples:

1. If you want to target sorting and/or visual neglect and scanning, direct the pt to sort the numbers in adjoining columns (so only put the 1's in the first column, the 2's in the second, and the 3's in the third... etc.). For added complexity ask the pt to predict when a column will get cleared (e.g., when you add the 4th "4" ball to its stack).

2. To target higher level reasoning and math, for higher functioning pts, make the game's goal to add together as many balls as possible (e.g., drag the middle "4" to the "1" below it in the screen shot to create a "5") to direct attention to the more complex possibilities within the game playing than just matching numbers and colors.

3. For a cool scanning and problem solving task ask the pt to fill up the grid with balls allowing as few as possible to pop. It's not possible to control this altogether because every few balls that are placed a new line of balls appears from below, and some of those may create a match. But the pt's task would be to go for the lowest score possible by placing the balls under their control in a way that doesn't allow two 2's or three 3's, etc. This would be a scanning-intensive task.

4. Brain-training: this is also a great app in general for exercising one's multitasking, math, problem solving, reflexes, planning ahead, prioritizing, attention and focus skills.

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