"JumpStart 1st Grade Math" redirects here. For the workbook, see JumpStart 1st Grade Math (workbook).

JumpStart Math for First Graders, originally released as JumpStart 1st Grade Math, is a game released in 1997 that focuses on teaching a first grade math curriculum.

Story and Gameplay

Frankie loves to mess up his backyard, especially by digging holes for bones. But this disturbs the bugs who inhabit the yard, so as punishment, the Queen Bee shrinks Frankie down to their size. As penance, he can play activities that involve assisting the backyard bugs in various ways. This enables him to earn back some of his bones, which he can now use to make staircases leading him to the magical dog tags he needs to return to normal size.

The toolbar enables the user to access features such as Back/Exit, Help, Difficulty levels, the ability to access a tutoring feature called the Big Bug Book that gives information on the academic skills needed for every activity and level, Progress report, and a Bone counter.



  • At the beginning of the game, put piles of bones into holes Frankie digs to add up to certain numbers. This is only played at the beginning of the game.
  • Put the Ants to Bed: Hosted by Wrangler Ant. The user helps ants go to bed by opening and closing doors in such a way as to cause them to enter different rooms. The goal is to have all the ants in the room that matches a particular category, such as color. This teaches sorting and grouping.
  • Set Sail!: Hosted by Captain Hop.The fleas can no longer travel on Frankie after he was shrunk, so they've begun traveling on a "river" created by the garden hose, under the guidance of grasshopper Captain Hop. In order to balance the lily pad boat, the "cargo" (answer) must equal the number of fleas on the other side, which is given in the form of an equation. After the arithmetic question is answered, there is a brief segment in which the user must help Frankie guide the boat down the river, at one point reviewing what they learned by choosing what path to go down.
  • Play Dragonfly Tag: Hosted by Amelia Dragonfly. An equation with a missing space will be presented. The user must "tag" the dragonfly with the number that completes it.
  • Seat the Spider Orchestra: Hosted by Spider Maestro. As spiders do not have ears, the Spider Maestro and his spider performers need some help. In order to succeed, the spiders must sit in the proper spaces, which means completing a number pattern. The spiders have numbers on them, and the user guides a spider to catch spiders with silk and place them in the "seats" they belong in order to finish the pattern.
  • Help the Caterpillars Crawl Home: Hosted by Mrs. Butterfly. Mrs. Butterfly needs help guiding her caterpillar children to their cocoon so they can become butterflies. This is accomplished by using sticks to fill in gaps in the branches so they can go across, which requires estimating lengths.
  • Build Sand Castles: Hosted by Beetle Boss. Since Frankie ruined his construction projects (sand castles) when he was big, the Beetle Boss enlists Frankie's help building new ones. The user must fill in a sand castle pattern with shapes in order to complete it.
  • Returning to Regular Size: Every time you collect five bones, build a staircase with them by matching the math equations on the bones with the math equations in the spaces that equal the same thing.
  • Worm Your Way Out: The Worm will sometimes pop up and give Frankie a challenge.


Educational Concepts

  • Sorting and grouping
  • Numbers
  • Telling time
  • Geometry and spatial relations
  • Addition and subtraction
  • Identifying number patterns and sequences
  • Counting money
  • Measuring

Bundles and Re-releases

In 1999, JumpStart Math for First Graders and its kindergarten and second grade counterparts were packaged and sold together as the JumpStart Math Mastery bundle.


See JumpStart Math for First Graders/Credits


  • The workbook JumpStart 1st Grade Math has a backyard theme that was likely inspired by this game, though other than that it has virtually no similar story elements.




External Links


  1. Knowledge Adventure. What's New. Archived on May 1, 1998. Retrieved on September 17, 2019.
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