Review by Just Another Mom

November 12, 2014- Blogger Kori of Just Another Mom published an interview with The Numbers Lady and a review of NumbersAlive! products. Read the full review below or click here for the original post.

 

“I hate math and I’ll be the first person to admit to it- I’m not all that great at math. Logic, statistics, word problems- fine, I actually very much enjoy that part of math. But when you bring numbers into play, forget it. I’ve never been a huge fan of math, and though I did take algebra and geometry in high school (and failed Trig), I loathed every minute of it. Growing up, I struggled with Dyslexia so I think that probably had something to do with it too. But, simply put, math and I just never got along. If there had been a way to make math fun and enjoyable, than who knows… maybe I would be more a math person (… but I kind of doubt it).

Make Math Fun with Numbers Alive

 First things first, let’s talk about Numbers Alive, the company that produces Hello Numbers.

After more than thirty years of working with and teaching about numbers, Dr. Rebecca Klemm, The Numbers Lady, founded NumbersAlive! as an innovative framework for demystifying numbers and math. Students of all ages join the inquisitive numeric characters – plush toys, puppets, and animated characters – as they explore the relevance of mathematical concepts worldwide.

No one is too young to start learning about the universality of numbers and math – and that their relevance should be engaging, interesting, and downright fun! Putting numbers into a real world contexts and looking at them through the lenses of art, history, science and culture propels math out of academic abstraction and into a vital part of everyday life.

(Above information from Numbers Alive)

I recently had the opportunity to interview Dr. Rebecca Klemm, the Numbers Lady, and founder of NumbersAlive. I really wish that I had taken notes from this, because speaking with her was really informative and fun (much like her program!)

My main questions for her were why the program, Hello Numbers, works so well and why it’s particularly resonated with the autism community. Dr. Klemm also let me know that in the near future, Hello Numbers will be releasing additional products for younger ages so  I’m very much looking forward to using these with Squeaker as well. But I digress.

Dr. Klemm explained that numbers (and math) tend to bring about anxiety in a lot of people. I know this from experience and I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s ever gone through this. But having a physical character, in this case a stuffed number, to hold on to eases that anxiety. Combined with music and rhyme, Hello Numbers introduces math in a fun and non-intimidating way. By easing anxiety, children are then able to focus on learning.

The plush numbers are included in the Hello Numbers Discovery Pack:

The Hello Numbers Discovery Pack is an award-winning, multisensory learning product that includes the friendly plush numbers of Team Ten along with Hello Numbers, which introduces the characters, and a free app. The combination of book, plush, and app makes it a great way to introduce children to the fun and friendly number characters.

Dr. Klemm explained that, when she was creating Hello Numbers, she wasn’t setting out to specifically target the autism community. But, because of the way the program is designed, Hello Numbers has really caught on with them. And it’s easy for me to see why. Taking that multisensory approach (books, music, plush, app), Hello Numbers appeals to a variety of learning styles and abilities.

Numbers Alive also shared the following testimonials with me:

“A big thank you and shout out to NUMBERSALIVE! … our special number backpack has arrived in AUSTRALIA !!! Our HF ASD [high functioning autistic] boy was so thrilled last night to receive an early 9th birthday present. After a severe meltdown we presented this and we never saw him all night, he slept with them and was in his room talking to them and making up stories, amazing. The service and communication to processing and delivering the order was fantastic. We’ll be back for the set of mid sized numbers I think for a Christmas gift. A big thumbs up “LIKE” from me and I’ll be sure to spread the word!” L.S.- Australia, 4/29/13

With my big Christmas order you graciously added number 4 as a surprise! Now we only need 0,1 and 2. Of course as the Stem Squad is produced I am sure we will need the rest of those as well. J is already talking about the Imaginary Unit. This kid is too funny! Thank you for making such awesome toys that help bring a social aspect to my son’s number obsession. He likes to have the medium numbers hold the small numbers like babies, so cute! A.F.- 4/13/13

I can definitely see us purchasing Hello Numbers in the future- both for Sweet B and for Squeaker. And who knows, maybe I’ll finally get over my own math anxiety in the process.”