Out of this world
Mangahigh.com's TranStar game invites pupils to test their knowledge of transformations - reflection, rotation, translation and enlargement - by guiding the alien, TranStar, into the safety of the StarGate.
What is it?
A computer game in the vein of Space Invaders. If pupils are unsure about the maths, they can check this as part of the game. It comes with a ranking system, keeping it competitive and engaging, and makes pupils consider not only their current mathematical problem, but also the future steps of their journey, due to a limit on the number of moves (or "jumps", in the language of the game) that can be made in each zone.
How can it be used?
The game is a useful assessment tool that checks learning without the pressure of a formal test. It encourages independence and problem-solving skills, while making maths fun. It is designed primarily for key stage 3 students but a range of similar resources is available at all levels.
Mangahigh.com has a wide range of free games covering numerous maths ideas, including Tangled Web, the quest to help Itzi the robotic spider rescue his family by solving angle puzzles, and The Wrecks Factor, which guides crews of sinking ships through quadratic factorisation.