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New Saskatchewan-developed app encourages students to explore math

Askî’s Pond interactive game was on display on Thursday when Deputy Premier and Education Minister Gordon Wyant visited Grade 1 students at O.M. Irwin School.
Askî’s Pond interactive game was on display on Thursday when Deputy Premier and Education Minister Gordon Wyant visited Grade 1 students at O.M. Irwin School. Province of Saskatchewan

A new Government of Saskatchewan-developed iPad app focused on strengthening student’s math skills was introduced to an elementary school in Swift Current.

Askî’s Pond interactive game was on display on Thursday when Deputy Premier and Education Minister Gordon Wyant visited Grade 1 students at O.M. Irwin School.

The app reinforces Saskatchewan’s Grade 1 math curriculum while incorporating First Nations and Métis content.

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“Following the success of Askî and Friends with Help Me Tell My Story, our government is focused on finding more innovative ways to motivate and engage students and incorporate First Nations and Métis learning perspectives,” Wyant said.

“Askî’s Pond serves both of these goals and is a great resource that will allow teachers, parents and caregivers to work together to support students.”

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The app is supposed to engage children and help them connect the math instruction in their classroom to the learning taking place at home.

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Askî’s Pond was established as part of the Ministry of Education’s second engagement tool Help Me Talk About Math aligning with the Education Sector Strategic Plan goals which has been piloted in both provincial and First Nations schools.

Help Me Talk About Math features the same Askî’s world characters that students who have used Help Me Tell My Story, an assessment tool for teachers, are familiar with.

With help from local Saskatchewan digital design agency zu, the iPad application was launched in Sept. 2018.

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“Immersive digital experiences have the potential to be a great educational tool,” zu CEO Ryan Lejbak said.

“The ministry understood this and gave us the creative space to imagine Askî’s Pond.  We’re so proud of this project and the ministry’s commitment to modern products like this.”

Askî’s Pond is available both in French and English and can be downloaded for free from the App store. An accompanying Help Me Talk About Math assessment app and web portal will be available to educators in Jan. 2019.

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To learn more visit www.saskatchewan.ca/residents/education-and-learning/prek-12-education-early-learning-and-schools/holistic-assessment.