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spacer all reviews > > > 3rd grade software

Brain Quest 3rd Grade

IBM

Ages 8 to 9

Rating Scale
5 = great,    1 = poor
Educational Value
4.0
Kid Appeal
4.5
Ease of Use
4.8

Brain Quest Screen Shot System Requirements

PC / Mac Price Survey

Product Support

This program is based on the highly successful Brain Quest line, and comes packaged with a special edition deck of Brain Quest cards. Much like other Brain Quest products, the game challenges kids to provide quick answers to knowledge-based questions from a variety of categories. The questions, which feature grade appropriate information, are designed to reinforce classroom learning.

The Perdido family is taking a traveling vacation in their van, and the user, along with a gaggle of neighborhood kids, has been invited to join them. There will be no gas stops on this trip, Mr. Perdido has adapted the van so that it now runs on brainpower. Questions and answers fly as the van rolls along the countryside. When the need arises to put the vehicle into high speed, the solution is simple -- its time for a lightning round!

The program features three game options: the 'Grand Tour' lets a single player answer rounds of questions at his or her own pace, "High Gear" offers up to four players sixty-second rounds, and "Rally" is a multi-player game in which players choose the questions that their opponents will attempt to answer. Questions are a surpisingly broad mix, gleaned from five categories including language arts, math, science, social studies, and grab bag.

Educational Value
For the most part, this program drills the student's current knowledge base rather than imparting new information. However, the dedicated student can choose to have the computer reveal correct answers when they are not correctly selected. In this way s/he will learn new information that will then be drilled in future game sessions, when the question appears again.

Our teacher reviewers noted that the questions are well-phrased, interesting, and on-target for the specified grade level.

Kid Appeal
This program was well-liked by our third grade testers. They found the questions challenging, but not to the extent that the game became discouraging. Although they enjoyed all three game options, kids especially liked playing the game in groups, and were delighted with the “Rally” game and the ability to choose their opponent’s questions. “I make my friends answer the questions that I think are the hardest,” commented one third grade girl, “but sometimes what I think is hard, they think is easy. That’s what’s fun about it!” As one might expect, our testers also mentioned that this program makes a great travel time activity.

Although there is a relatively high level of question repetition (we encountered previously seen questions as early as our second round of play), additional program game packs can be purchased through the IBM web site for a small fee.

Ease of Use / Install
This program installs without difficulty. Program navigation is simple, and well explained as part of the introductory sequences.

Best for... / Bottom-Line
In the tradition of the Brain Quest product family, this program successfully offers an educational option for young quiz-show fans.

See SuperKids' comparisons with other 3rd Grade software titles, and the Buyers Guide for current market prices of the PC and Mac versions.

System Requirements
PC: Windows 95/98, Pentium processor, 10 MB hard drive space, 16 MB RAM, SVGA monitor 640 x 480, 256 color display, Quad-speed or faster CD-ROM.

Mac: System 7.5 or higher, Power Macintosh or faster cpu, 10 MB hard drive space, 16 MB RAM, SVGA monitor 640 x 480, 256 color display, Quad-speed or faster CD-ROM.

Reviewed on:

  • Pentium166 with 48 MB and 12XCD
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