Tom Patten — Lower School Technology Coordinator
Lower School Technology Coordinator Tom Patten has developed a math application for students in K-2 that challenges them to invent strategies they can use to see quantity in flexible ways. According to Mr. Patten, his “Quick Images” app enables children to “see number relationships visually.”
The tasks in this app are designed to foster the skill of subitizing (perceive the number of items at a glance and without counting) by flashing a graphic of objects on the screen for a limited amount of time before vanishing. The app consists of six different game modes and meets a variety of Common Core State Standards for mathematics.
Quick Images, the first in a series of three apps that Mr. Patten is designing for early elementary math, was introduced this month in first grade math centers and generated much excitement among the students. The kindergarten will explore the app next month.
A technologist and former math teacher at Hewitt, Mr. Patten currently teaches 7th grade robotics with Mr. Nauman. He holds a bachelor’s degree in computer science from Fordham (where he acquired his programming skills) and a master’s in educational technology from Teachers College, Columbia University.
This is Mr. Patten’s first foray into the world of mobile apps. He was pleased to learn that since his app launched in September, it has been downloaded by users and schools in some 20 countries, including Australia and New Zealand. “There aren’t many educational apps out there that are truly focused on essential math ideas. Most are diluted with characters or stories. It’s exciting for me to be able to create a tool that teachers can use in the classroom and see progress in the thinking of their learners,” said Mr. Patten.