Wednesday, December 1, 2010

TOS Review: Master Ruler

Which lines on the ruler indicates 1/4 inches?  What about 1/8 inches or 1/16 inches?  It can be frustrating and overwhelming for kids to try and figure these out.  And what if you get interrupted while you're trying to count your way over in 1/16ths?  The Master Ruler to the rescue!

The Master Ruler from Master Innovations is a unique concept.  Hold it up, and you see the different measurements in different colors.  But that's just the beginning.  Each fraction of measurement is actually on a different layer of clear plastic.  The larger the measurement, the longer the line.  A spiral binding holds all the different layers together, making it easy to flip to the one you need.  On the back is a quick run-down of the different  measurements and their equivalents (1 ft = 12 inches, etc).  This video explains the concept of the Master Ruler and how it works.

We received the Standard Ruler ($9.95), the Metric Ruler ($9.95), the Master Ruler Workbook ($15.95), (these three items can be purchased together as part of the Master Ruler Starter Set at $41.25), as well as a Marvels of Measurement Poster ($10.00).

Marvels of Measurement Poster

The Master Ruler Workbook was very helpful, as I found that I had trouble getting started with how to use the product with my kids.  It had plenty of lesson ideas, and the consumable pages of the workbook are allowed to be copied for family use - very helpful for those of us with larger familes!

The Master Ruler has been, and will continue to be, well used in our house.  Not only does it help children learn basic measuring skills, but it teaches fractions at the same time.  My older son, who has been struggling with fractions suddenly gained a very real understanding of how to simplify fractions just using this ruler!  We haven't done this yet, but the Metric Ruler can also be used to teach decimals.

The Marvels of Measurement Poster has been a fantastic addition to our wall.  I'm pretty picky about what posters end up hanging on the wall, but this one was definitely worth the space.  Though we haven't done much to actually study it, the children seem to be absorbing the facts on the poster - well enough even to know some answers to trivia questions at Thanksgiving (when we play lots of family games together).

Master Innovations offers other math tools, including Master Clock, Master Angles and Master Fractions.  You can check out what the other members of the Homeschool Crew have to say about all the Master Innovations products here.

Disclaimer: As a member of the 2010-2011 TOS Homeschool Review Crew, I received a complimentary Master Ruler, a Metric Ruler, the Master Ruler Workbook in exchange for my fair, honest and unbiased review. No other compensation was received.

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