Cloud Machine
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Academics' Choice Award™ Winner

Cloud Machine

Ages: 8 - 13
Price: Varies | Included as part of i-Ready and Ready Classroom Mathematics
Type: Game, Website, App
By Curriculum Associates


Cloud Machine is one of the learning games included in i-Ready and Ready Classroom Mathematics.

Cloud Machine is a series of visual puzzles which help 3rd through 8th grade students build a conceptual understanding of fractions and strengthen their visual problem-solving skills. The goal is to fill up a cloud with an exact amount of liquid. The player opens and closes a series of gates to move, divide, and combine liquid, and ultimately drop it into the cloud. Once the cloud is precisely filled, it rains onto a landscape where plants and animals grow, rewarding the player and marking progress.

The game helps students understand fraction recognition, equivalence, and addition and subtraction of fractions with the same and different denominators. Students can choose among the game's different worlds, each of which features diverse content and visual rewards.

As they succeed, students unlock more challenging puzzles, which they can restart at any time to try a different strategy. Available on web and iPad, Cloud Machine is an innovative, engaging game that helps students master a fundamental mathematical concept.

Learn more by watching the brief video at


Review Highlights:

Cloud machine is a relentlessly fun, deceptively educational way to introduce the concept of fractions using purely visual elements (pouring water)! It's so simple, yet very addictive. The game is an effective way to introduce concepts such as volume, area, fractions, basic geometry, the commutative property of addition, equivalence, strategy, and critical thinking. The game difficulty increases at just the right pace to keep students engaged and successfully completing each challenge. It encourages thinking ahead and allows retries, which promotes reflective thinking and strategic decision making--vital for success in math and life.

The problem-solving aspect of the game really hooks the players. Even though it's a simple interface with bare bones animation, the fact that it doesn't use numbers to teach the concept of fractions, but instead uses shapes (containers) and water simulations, my students were not intimiated and simply thought it was fun! I grinned from ear to ear watching them play, knowing that they were tackling some pretty advanced math problems.

I will definitely incorporate this game into my classroom.

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