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AoPS surprise

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#1 deerforest


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Posted 06 October 2017 - 01:20 PM

This year has been somewhat remarkable for math. I've posted about our math journey so often in other threads, but quick summary:


- DD hated all elementary math programs we attempted so we basically just did living math until BA 3A finally released spring of grade 2. It was a huge success but the release delays meant that we dabbled with tons of living math, manipulatives, games, reading, videos, any other curriculum throughout her elementary math.

- She was ready for pre-algebra in 6th, but we didn't like anything we tried (and I owned it all). We continued our random dabbling with tons of living math with a mix of curricula. Even though we had loved BA, AoPS pre-algebra didn't work either.

- We started algebra in 7th and I realized why we never liked pre-algebra.. she didn't really need that year of review and I probably should have just gone to algebra. Hindsight. But, we did Foerster's and used Math without Borders. It was ok, but neither of us loved it. I felt like we lost some of the strong conceptual traditions we had come to love. The sheer number of word problems was overwhelming. We got tired of the calculator problems. We finished it, but I just didn't feel like we were where we wanted to be.

- I decided to just have her try some other algebra for this year (8th) rather than move to geometry because I felt she still had some holes coming out of Foerster. She's on the other side of puberty now too, and her brain seems to have changed quite a bit! So, we started AoPS pre-algebra with DD doing it completely self-led. Never thought I'd see the day. She spends 1-1.5 hours daily on math without complaint, diligently working away. After the first chapter, I had her just take a look at Arbor Chuckles as a comparison. She immediately told me it was too easy, and she just wanted to go back to AoPS.


This is a kid who has always had a strong natural inclination towards math with insightful conceptual understanding. But, she never loved it. She had slow processing speed (2e) that I think frustrated her, and maturity and puberty seem to have made a huge difference. 


She is truly loving doing AoPS algebra on her own, and I never would have predicted this! I'm totally in shock!

Edited by deerforest, 06 October 2017 - 01:21 PM.

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#2 Julie of KY

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Posted 06 October 2017 - 01:30 PM

Sometimes it just takes some maturity.  :hurray:

#3 Arcadia



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Posted 06 October 2017 - 01:53 PM

She had slow processing speed (2e) that I think frustrated her, and maturity and puberty seem to have made a huge difference.

My DS11 have slow processing speed but his speed on the SAT gone up in 8 months. He has always been faster with work when in a sterile environment so SAT tests are the easiest to compare since the test site is as sterile as can be. I do think that his processing speed might actually be faster than when he was tested two years ago but I can’t afford retesting just to satisfy my curiosity.

His executive function skills is what is holding him back now from finishing school work faster. AoPS books aren’t so bad because he just require paper, pencil and sometimes a calculator. What trip him up is foreign language and science labs because of the many components.

He was evaluated for ADHD and it was decided that he wasn’t ADHD. He is sensory seeking and the distraction is more from that. Outside noise, he looks. Someone talks, he wants to listen. Sees squirrels, he wants to chase. So the locked down test environment is when he does the best.

Edited by Arcadia, 06 October 2017 - 01:56 PM.

#4 deerforest


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Posted 06 October 2017 - 02:52 PM

DD tested as ADD inattentive and working memory/processing ssues, but I find it really hard to split apart as which it really is. She has made so many improvements from the efforts we've both made since she was tested at 9 (she's 13 now) The biggest leaps have really been since puberty, and she's started to drink coffee which is actually seeming to help (even if it's a placebo, I'll take it!). I'm trying to decide if we should re-test in 9th to have additional record for accommodations for SAT. Honestly, she might choose circus school rather than college.

Edited by deerforest, 06 October 2017 - 04:22 PM.

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#5 daijobu


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Posted 07 October 2017 - 10:25 PM

I've been told that there is a lot of overlap in Level 5 BA and Pre Algebra.