In my 13+ *gasp* years of homeschooling we have used many different math curriculums.
- Teaching Textbooks
The only program I can honestly still say I am not thrilled with is MCP. But, hey....I used to say I hated Math-U-See but I have had a change of heart....so who knows.
So, this year...
- Algebra I student is using Saxon (because I have him take a class at a home school coop and that is what they use) For those of you who know me well you are probably thinking....if she majored in math....why can't she teach Algebra? I love Algebra...But, again, I only have so much time and my son and I decided together that this would be a good solution. And you know what. It's working great. I can still help him when needed. And...the other time I spend with him can be to discuss Religion, U.S. History, etc. Win -Win. And...turns out Saxon is a great book for him!
- Pre-Algebra student is using Math-U-See. She learns differently. She does much better learning a concept, practicing only that concept for a few days, then doing cumulative review pages. She is a smart cookie but doesn't approach math like her older brother or myself. I've been better able to (with this program) step back and see math from her point of view and teach it to her in a different way.
- 5th grader is using Teaching Textbooks. He does it all on his own and is doing really well with it. We've used it for a few years for various students and will continue to do so. He doesn't need to wait for help - the program teaches it - and I can answer questions when needed (though he rarely needs it). I particularly like the auto grading. I think it's the best part of the program. Every problem is graded as it is answered. No more doing an entire page of problems wrong because someone forgot a simple little rule. If he gets something wrong he gets another chance...he can also view the solution if he chooses so that he can learn where his mistake was made. Great idea!
- 3rd grader is just finishing Teaching Textbooks grade 3 and will begin Math-U-See grade Delta (grade 4). Why the switch? My 3rd grader seems to have quite the math brain and I intend to help him take advantage of that. Like I said above, Math-U-See uses a different approach to worksheets. 1 Lesson, 3 practice pages, 3 review pages, 1 test. For someone who grasps math quickly we can cut out some pages. If he does well on the first practice page (and I think he really understands the concept) I'll have him do a review page, etc. The reason I am doing this is because I want to make room in his/my schedule for Singapore math's Challenging Word Problems 3*. We've done a few problems and he loves it! His 5th grade brother, not wanting to be outdone, has asked to join us :)
- 2nd grader is working with Math-U-See as well. I tried Singapore math with her but it didn't go so well. She could do all the work but it just wasn't working for her. Hard to explain...we also found out near the end of the school year that she was seriously in need of glasses due to very poor vision in one eye. Not sure how much this would have affected her math but I do know that her reading struggles ended and she took off after getting those glasses. And...her math has greatly improved as well. Since we have a little catch up to do - I have been having her do some lessons with only 1 practice page, some with all the pages, etc. And, although her personality might scream...give me a book with lots of action and colors....she does MUCH better with the simple layout with a lot of white space found on the worksheets.
- Pre-K student is using Math-U-See Primer because I had it laying around (and my mathy 3rd grader didn't actually use many pages....he just caught on so quickly).