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Saxon vs Horizon Math (K-2)

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#1 JessMcG


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Posted 08 November 2008 - 02:31 PM

I'm on the fence. DD is going to finish Horizons K early next year and I'm thinking of switching to Saxon.

Starting off with Horizons was tough. It took me awhile to get in my groove of figuring out how to teach the concepts. That's when I started thinking of switching to Saxon so that I could have a scripted teacher's manual.

But now we are in the swing of things. Horizons seems okay. Maybe I shouldn't mess with a good thing. But I still wonder if the scripted manual would be the way to go as we move on to more complicated stuff.

Would anyone who has used one or both programs be willing to share their experience and/or provide advice?


#2 langfam


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Posted 08 November 2008 - 02:37 PM

We did Saxon with 4 dc, but with our youngest we're using Horizons. Saxon moves very slowly and is behind most other programs. I think of Saxon as a gentle approach. Some of my dc were bored with it. Horizons is definitely more challenging and it does move faster.

My 2 cents.

#3 abbeyej


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Posted 08 November 2008 - 03:04 PM

I used Saxon for a while with my oldest. I switched to Horizons because I was unhappy with its lack of emphasis on place value/ base ten. I found the scripting tedious and overly long, and I just didn't think ds was *learning* much.

I've been much, much happier with Horizons (and some Singapore as well, though mostly older than the grades you're looking at). But I'm also pretty content teaching math concepts. It irked me to be told how to teach, especially when I sometimes disagreed with Saxon's methods / explanations.

If you do switch from Horizons to Saxon, you'll want to give a placement test. After finishing Horizons K, you'd at least go into Saxon 2, not Saxon 1.

#4 JudoMom


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Posted 08 November 2008 - 03:30 PM

I'll start this by saying I know nothing about Horizons, other than it's colorful. We started with Saxon and I've been happy with it so I don't even look at other math programs (can't be tempted by what I don't know about :001_smile:).

We do use it a level ahead (so my ds9 is in 6/5 in 4th grade). I like the scripted TM for concepts I'm not sure how to present. However, the TMs only go through Saxon 3, and then from 5/4 on there is a textbook that is written to the student and no TM (or worksheets for the child). Since abbey says that your dd would probably go into Saxon 2, that would only give you 2 years of scripted manuals. Because of that, and because you said you've found a groove, I probably wouldn't switch.

#5 MrsMe


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Posted 08 November 2008 - 08:06 PM

I like Saxon, which is what we're currently using. My main concern w/Horizon's was the lack of teacher's help in the TM. It tells you to "describe" or "explain"...... Sometimes that's difficult to do even though you know what's going on. And sometimes it's nice to have that scripting so things can be explain on their level as opposed to ours.

Saxon does quite a bit of review. I find that I'd rather have it and skip it if I have to, than to not have review at all.

As far as Saxon being behind...I think it's up for debate. It all comes out in the end, no matter what you use. I hear Horizons moves too fast after 2nd. So as I mentioned, it all comes out in the end. No curriculum is all that great for basic subjects unless you use it in it's entirety. People tend to switch to Saxon in 4th grade.

So its what works for you. If you need more scripting, Saxon is good, but you may be ahead a bit grade level wise. You may be able to skip to 2nd. If things are going well with Horizon's, I'd stick to it. If you're not comfortable with the TM, look at Saxon. It's all open and go. Just take the placement tests and you'll be fine.

Edited by alilac, 08 November 2008 - 08:11 PM.

#6 JessMcG


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Posted 09 November 2008 - 01:29 PM

Thanks for the replies. I'll probably debate this one with myself to the last minute. :confused::lol: Whatever I decide to do now, I'm still planning to switch to Saxon at level 4.

#7 Medieval Mom

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Posted 10 November 2008 - 10:16 PM


#8 Linda...inOwasso


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Posted 11 November 2008 - 12:18 AM

I whole-heartedly recommend Horizons. But then, I don't use the TM -- dd's using Horizons 3 this year and I haven't needed them thus far. I find Horizons to be superior to Saxon. It definitely moves faster, which is a good thing for us. Horizons provides satisfactory review without beating a dead horse (as in Saxon.)