Thursday, August 19, 2010

Next up?!? I bald yet?

Math-I love Math, I mean I really, really, really enjoy numbers.  Unlike Grammar, numbers don't have exceptions, they are firm and steady.  The give me a feeling of confidence.  Enter the Saxon away, run away, all love of math ripped from my early childhood, nightmares of pages and pages of dry unable to understand new math?  Spiral? Spiral is good! Spiral is not good for me, or my like the spiral when you flush the toilet? We flushed SAXON!  Not really down the toilet, as we have a septic tank...but hey I am totally off subject!
The subject of the day! Math! 
I was very smart and listening to some fellow homeschoolers about their accelerated learners for Math, especially for Algebra.  Eric is one of those kids that gets it.  He tested (for what it was worth) for the GIFTed program in New Mexico, but I didn't need a test to see this kid has a super processor for a brain, it whirls way to fast for me most times. 

We ordered TEACHING TEXTBOOKS pre-Algebra, and he was done in 4 months, so hey into Algebra he went! It was wonderful...he did it, it wasn't easy peasy, but he pushed it through and it was challenging!  We completed it (most of it).  He is going into Geometry this year, and so far (3 days) so good. 

TEACHING TEXTBOOKS is good for those that can read and follow directions independently(key word-independently)!  They have placement tests to figure out just where they should be, and from administering these, I find their early elementary books to be a year earlier.  This means if you get 5th grade, it is actually 4th grade standard, see what I am saying?  I am going to work Gabriel into after we finish MATH-U-SEE.

I love Math-U-See!  Love it! My kids love it also, and after watching tears pour out of my youngest Anna's eyes in Saxon, to see her "get it" with Math-U-See is a wonderful feeling!  We once again had to start a bit behind in the "grade" they are supposed to be.  We started in GAMMA - Single and multiple-digit multiplication.  I really felt that the times tables were the biggest weakness of all three(G, Abs, and Anna).  We did a chapter a day for a few weeks, they loved eating up all the pages.  Getting 100% on a test, made for big smiles.  We were zooming.  This was a good thing, since we didnt' figure out what to use til January!!! We had "lost" half the year with Saxon battles.  Three months, we had finished the first book, now to DELTA-Single and multiple-digit division. 
 We worked for the last few months of school and into the summer.  We have 5 Chapters left, and Gabriel is beginning to move quicker, and finding because of the stronger foundation of his multiplication and division facts, he is able to retain the new topics!  He has pulled a few chapters ahead.  He wants to catch up and be with his (back in New Mexico) friend in Epsilon-Fractions.

  The girls will also go into Epsilon this year, but I am breathing sigh, as this is right where they need to be.  Gabriel wants to push thru to get to Zeta-Decimal and Percents.  That will be his last in the lower grades.  He really wants Teaching Textbooks for 7th grade, and with his maturity in alone work strengthening, it is a possibility. 

We ordered the manipulatives, and I really think we could have lived without them, but Gabriel made a cool tower with them!!
 Having said that, we haven't begun the fractions portion, and those manipulatives look really helpful!!
With Math-U-See, we do have the video series, and we watch them before we start the chapter.  The only part that I don't like is the way Steve (the owner and MC of the videos) does long multiplication, it confused me, and the kidlets, so we do it the old fashion way, carry the ten, etc....using the little number!  It hasn't hindered them at all!  We are pushing thru very long division right now, and my favorite part are the word problems, they are real life situations and make them think.  You can't just pull out the numbers and divide! 
We laughed and laughed as Anna tried to figure out the formula for how many hooves in a herd of cows.  She says, I can't find it on my Formula Sheet. 
There is also, free even if you don't use Math-U-See, worksheet generators.  This is a great feature.  We do extra worksheets for those times, they are struggling with the topic.  It really helps in mastering.


La Mama Loca said...

We LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE Math U See!!! It is such a blessing to finally have a math program that works!

abby said...

i love math u see and i am going to be on lesson 20.i just have to test on 19.