Thinkster Math is a K-12 online math tutoring program available on desktops, laptops (Chrome & Safari) and iPad apps designed to boost performance in math. They use AI technology in their online worksheets to understand each child’s learning process.
Based on the plan enrolled in, your student has access to 100,000+ worksheets and videos and a specified number of one on one tutoring sessions held through Zoom.
The tutoring sessions include a special whiteboard program where both the tutor and your student have access to write on the screen. You can even take a photo of your student’s actual homework from school, for them to work on together.
The Silver plan includes use of the worksheets, videos and assessments. The Gold plan includes the worksheets, videos and assessments, along with a 15 minute session each week with tutor. The Platinum plan bumps up to a 30 minute session each week. Additional sessions can be added on for an additional cost.
The tutor I spoke with recommended completing 7-10 worksheets each week. Each worksheet specifies a target time to complete. The ones we received averaged 7-11 minutes each. After submitting the worksheet, the tutor then has access to view the results, including what notes were added by the student in completing the worksheet, how long the student took on each problem and which problems the child missed or got right on the second try.
Thinkster Math offers a 7 day preview to try the system, complete some worksheets, watch some videos, and meet with a tutor. Read on for our Thinkster review.
What happens during a 7 day preview
Registration was very easy, asking a few questions about your student, including the purpose for tutoring. You could select from multiple options, including Needing Help, Wanting to Get Ahead, and Looking for Supplementation.
The next step was for my son to complete the Assessment. The Assessment was 20 questions, each from a separate topic, with a suggested time to complete of 20 minutes. Once the Assessment was completed, one example worksheet was made available based on his grade level.
You are also encouraged to watch a webinar or hop on a call with the company at this point to learn more. When clicking to sign up for a webinar, they were only available for the next few hours.
Worksheets were populated based on the Assessment results. Three worksheets were available at any one time, with several others visible with a lock image. As you complete worksheets, another one is unlocked to replace it.
When completing the worksheets, one problem is shown at a time, with immediate feedback if the answer is correct or not. Your student can write directly on the screen (so a tablet or touch screen works best) to help solve the problem, which is visible to your tutor for later feedback.
Contacted by tutor to arrange first session by email and text. When using her link, there were no times available for the next month, but communicating through text, we were able to arrange a time the next day.
Met with tutor online to demonstrate white board and let my son try it out. She went over the online system, and no tutoring took place. It was solely a walk through and scheduled the first official tutoring session.
Continued completing worksheets and watching videos. Videos were a mixture of Youtube videos and Thinkster branded videos.
Thinkster sent an email warning that if the trial wasn’t canceled, I would be charged for the Gold plan annual rate. Canceling was very easily done within the app. No phone calls or emails required. I did receive a subsequent email from customer service asking for my opinion and a text from the tutor. I did find all the communication from Thinkster and the tutor helpful and informative and not like they were trying to hide anything.
My Thinkster Review
The tutor we were paired with seemed very knowledgeable and friendly. She connected with my son right away, but was also very at ease speaking to me as well. I like how texting is utilized to send reminders and keep in communication. As we didn’t go through an actual live tutoring session, I can’t say for sure, but it seems it would be very personalized to what your student needs to work on. The worksheets, on the other hand, were more limited. They were based on the Assessment, which had just 1 question per topic. Therefore, your student may have inadvertently missed the problem, but it’s not really an issue. Or on the other side, guessed on a question and got it right, but has not developed a full understanding of the topic. I’m sure if you committed long term, these would adapt to your student’s needs. The videos on the other hand, were all available and you could choose the topics to focus on. It’s definitely worth checking out for 7 days to see if it’s right for your student.