21st September 2001 at 01:00
Dave Benson Phillips's Maths Machine. Ages: 6+. pound;11.50. Hillier-Stevens Music, PO Box 663, Tring, Hertfordshire HP23 5WA.

In essence, this is a music CD-Rom which teaches two- to 12-times tables. But instead of cute nursery rhymes, it features noisy pop and hip-hop rhythms and fun rhymes.

The raps for each table are printed on the CD insert with the track number. Just choose the track you want and Dave Benson raps out "Eric was a dinosaur", children's voices respond with "two times 12, that's 24". The second time, the children omit the answer and third time through there are no children's voices, it's down to the children in your class.

Each track lasts about two minutes and it makes an effective and fun way to practise basic skills.

Pam Turnbull is Science Co-ordinator at The Heys primary school, Ashton-under-Lyne, Tameside

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