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Saxon math 3, 5/4, and 6/5 question


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#1 alexfam

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Posted 04 December 2008 - 03:02 PM

My DS7 took the placement test for Saxon at the beginning of the year. He placed into Saxon 5/4. A friend gave me Saxon 3 to see if Saxon was a good fit for us. So, we started there b/c there was enough in it that he hadn't covered. Now i'm trying to make a decision. In Jan. we will begin several new grade level subjects like Spelling, Science, Writing, Latin, and English grammar. I have been thinking that we could treat Jan. like the starting of a new school year and switch our math. But, i'm not too sure. There are still a lot in Saxon 3 that my son hasn't covered but would still be covered in the upper levels. However, looking at Saxon 5/4 and 6/5 these look like the same materials with 6/5 adding more. So, would you finish 3 and then skip 5/4 and start 6/5 or start 5/4 in Jan. and finish it and more into 6/5 or 7/6? Any suggest on math would be appreciated.

Thank you

#2 EKS

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Posted 04 December 2008 - 04:39 PM

The jump from Saxon 3 to 5/4 is a big one in the sense that the format changes and is more demanding of the student. Also, Saxon's strength is in the extreme amount of review and the incremental presentation. It *seems* like it is *all* review sometimes, but there really is a progression. There is even a progression between lessons on the same topic in the same book. The problems get subtly harder. This is why the publisher says to never skip problems because it was developed as a package.

So, my long-winded point is twofold. First, I would finish Math 3 if your son is doing well with it. The worksheets are helpful for a younger child. Then if you want to continue with Saxon, I would go to 5/4 because of the format change. Some people have their children test through the first part of the book so there isn't so much review initially. Then at the end of 5/4 you could consider skipping 6/5, or simply testing through again.

The other thing about this is that Saxon is not always the best choice for a mathematically accelerated child. Singapore, for example, has more challenging problems and has a workbook format, which younger children usually prefer. I think when you start skipping too much in Saxon, it loses what makes it a strong program, namely, gentle development of concepts with lots of review.

#3 Mandy in TN

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Posted 04 December 2008 - 08:52 PM

agreeing with Kai

With Saxon I would never skip the second half of the book. I would finish one level and then test out of the beginning of the next level. However, like Kai said, there is an adjustment to the fomat change at the beginning of 54, so that may not be the time to skip lessons.

I'm afraid that I am not much help:001_huh:-
Mandy

#4 dangermom

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Posted 04 December 2008 - 11:45 PM

We are doing Saxon 5/4 with our 8yo girl. The repetition is good for her. But there is quite a lot of work in each lesson--it's designed for a 9 or 10yo. So I would say to stick with 3 for a while yet--we liked it last year. Or switch to Singapore if your boy is quick at math.

#5 alexfam

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Posted 05 December 2008 - 10:12 AM

My son is quick at math. We have tried Singapore and he didn't like it. The one thing I believe that turned him off was the sticking with one topic. He really enjoys having different problems to do. He has enjoyed Saxon but I guess i'm not liking the spiraling approach. I see topics in 6/5 that my son has already covered. Once my son's get's it he wants to move on. And when looking at 5/4 and 6/5 I see that he will be covering the same topics again I know he isn't going to like it. I guess i'm trying to find a program that has differnet problems on the worksheet/workpage but doesn't spiral. Once they teach a topic it moves on and not reviewing what has already been taught. We actually has to skip a lot in Saxon 3 just to get where he was getting some new material.

The format wouldn't be a problem for my son. His English text is so that he has to write everything out, so he is use to not having a workbook.

I don't know what I am going to do. I guess I will continue with 3 for right now unless I find something that fits us.

#6 OHGrandma

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Posted 05 December 2008 - 10:56 AM

Since he placed at 5/4, I'd put him in there. I'd guess he's ready for it, but not exactly fluent with the work in 3. Chances are, he'll get the needed practice from 3 by doing the 5/4. If he doesn't, then assign 5/4 as challenge/reward work along with 'review' work from 3.

I have not looked at a Saxon text, but this was the approach I took with Singapore. My GS9 gets the concepts quickly but got balky when it came to getting the facts mastered. Going to a higher level, he saw the reason for getting the facts memorized. Doing a multi-step mathematical computation was challenging, but it got very rewarding when he could zip through them after getting fluent with his facts.

#7 Hoggirl

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Posted 09 December 2008 - 10:14 PM

My ds is a strong math student. He did K and 1st in public school where, at the time, they were using Saxon math. When I pulled him out, we skipped 2, but I would not skip 3. This is the level where they really get their math facts down. We did 3 in its entirety. After that I allowed my ds to "test out." The first 1/3 of Saxon books are review. My ds never needed it. I let him take the first 8 tests, and, as long as he scored 90% or higher, we moved on (he always did). Thus we started Saxon 5/4 at lesson 41. Same for Saxon 6/5 and Saxon 7/6 Ds did "most" of Saxon 7/6 and then we went into Chalkdust Pre-Algebra. There is lots of review in Saxon, but that is why I like it. At any rate, using Saxon in this way accelerated him considerably. He did, however, grow weary of the sprial format. I think it is great when they are little, but I am glad we switched to a mastery program. He did Chalkdust Pre-Algebra in grade 4, Chalkdust Algebra I in grade 5, and is now doing their Geometry program. I am glad we left Saxon when we did, but I think it laid a great foundation. As long as it is used at least one grade ahead of the stated level, I think it is fine.

#8 Storm Bay

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Posted 10 December 2008 - 11:50 AM

Do 5/4, but skip all the review at the beginning, particularly if you start it right after 3. My eldest did 5/4, 6/5 & the last half of 7/6. She did not need all that review; she had a mind like a steel trap for most things. I never gave her more than half the problems, but usually fewer than that. By 7/6, which she went to after doing most of Singapore 6 (first time we tried SM for her) and I let her take the tests; she only had to do the lessons when she got those problems wrong on the test.

I don't recommend Saxon for mathy dc. I don't like teaching it, but since my eldest learns math by reading the text, that was okay. I did Saxon K and some of Saxon 1 with my now 10 yo. Not a great fit, so we tried MUS because she's so visual spatial. Not mathy enough, so we combined it with SM. SM is our main math now.

#9 fractalgal

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Posted 10 December 2008 - 04:06 PM

My DS7 took the placement test for Saxon at the beginning of the year. He placed into Saxon 5/4. A friend gave me Saxon 3 to see if Saxon was a good fit for us. So, we started there b/c there was enough in it that he hadn't covered. Now i'm trying to make a decision. In Jan. we will begin several new grade level subjects like Spelling, Science, Writing, Latin, and English grammar. I have been thinking that we could treat Jan. like the starting of a new school year and switch our math. But, i'm not too sure. There are still a lot in Saxon 3 that my son hasn't covered but would still be covered in the upper levels. However, looking at Saxon 5/4 and 6/5 these look like the same materials with 6/5 adding more. So, would you finish 3 and then skip 5/4 and start 6/5 or start 5/4 in Jan. and finish it and more into 6/5 or 7/6? Any suggest on math would be appreciated.

Thank you


I agree with others who recommend doing 5/4 but skipping the first part of review. What I did with my daughter (who also does Singapore Math) was to group 3 to 4 lessons together at a time, and then have her do the Lesson Practice only for the first 3 lessons and on the fourth lesson have her do both the Lesson Practice AND Mixed Practice. The review is so much that it reinforces what was done on the previous four lessons.

Caution: this is not what the authors recommend doing...but I make curriculums work for me and tailor them to the ability of the child, not vice versa.

I do think Saxon provided a strong base for her however, and I am glad that we have used it for her younger years (combined with Singapore).

I come back to Saxon (when taking a break from Singapore) and have her take the Saxon Tests at the end of the book to make sure she is retaining and covering all the American bases (as well as the Singapore Math bases).

Edited by fractalgal, 10 December 2008 - 04:12 PM.


#10 BlueGator

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Posted 15 December 2008 - 01:38 PM

My 9 yo son finished Saxon 3 last year. I purchased Saxon 54 for this year but was too easy for him. We jumped to Saxon 65 and are doing well.

He picks up the lessons quickly.

Last fall he tested out of over 1/2 of Saxon 3 so I started him closer to the end of the book. He hated it! He really likes the gentle gradual approach because everything is easy for him. I did the whole book in Saxon 3. Saxon pre-introduces math ideas.

Sometimes the only way to know is trial and error.

I did try Singapore in the early days. He hated the big changes in subject.

#11 Jen500

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Posted 15 December 2008 - 01:46 PM

Just another suggestion-
You could use Singapore, and add some problems each day from the Intensive Practice workbook a chapter or so behind the current topic.

#12 Melmc

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Posted 18 December 2008 - 01:56 PM

Count me in with the crowd who says continue with Math 3. My son did that in 2nd grade at age 7. He's now 8 and doing 54. There's a huge jump and a big difference in format between the two. The math hasn't given him problems, but the different format has been an issue. I'd finish Math 3, then let him test out of the early parts of 54.


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