If you thought algebra was hard when you were in school just wait until your 8th grader asks you
to help with their homework. Although solving basic math equations has stayed the same, it
does seem to be more difficult the older you get and the longer it’s been since you last took your own algebra class.
Students these days may use Chat GPT to get the answers, and teachers and parents know the
The importance of them is learning how to come up with solutions on their own.
A number of smartphone apps can help.
Socratic is a Google app built for Android and iOS devices that helps students get right to the
question they need help with, and find solutions.
Using your smartphone’s camera just aim it at the question on a computer screen or sheet of
paper. To try it out I aimed my camera at the question “Who was Elizabeth Cady Stanton?”. I
have no clue but Socratic calls up an article from the National Women’s History Museum, a
related YouTube video, an entry from Encyclopedia Brittanica, and her Wikipedia page.
Math questions are even more impressive. I found what looked to be a very difficult algebra
question. I don’t know what I’m looking at or solve the homework problem. Socratic does. Not
just giving the answer but steps to solve it.
It can even read handwritten math questions provided it’s written clearly.
Socratic is a free app. Google owns it. But Google hasn’t updated the Android version in 3 years
so it doesn’t work on some Android devices. But the iPhone version was just updated a month
ago. Chat GPT and some other apps will just give the answers, but this app helps students, and
parents learn how to do the work to make next week’s homework easier to understand.