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Math program: Prof B, Hands on, etc. and hi we're back!


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Hi everyone,


I haven't been on this forum in a long long while (maybe 1-2 years? yikes!) because we took a homeschool hiatus out of necessity. My dd, now almost 10, who was the reason I was on the AL board back then, currently attends the PS center based gifted program. It's great for her, so she'll likely remain through at least next school year (when it's time to move to middle school-- then I'm not so sure). We're now homeschooling our younger child, who just turned five this week.


He's his sister's opposite-- her strengths/passions are in language/creative areas, while he is our systems, facts, Math guy. I was planning to use a lot of the materials we have from his sis for him, and in everything but Math it seems to be working. But we already need to do something else for Math.


He's blown through her old programs, which end in the 2nd-3rd grade ranges. His ability, understanding and intuitive knack for Math is pretty wild. Some of the things he understands and does include: addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions, negative numbers (with all 4 processes), exponents/roots, factorials, primes, some pre-algebra stuff (e.g. 4a= 100, 23+x= 37, x squared + 3= 84, square root of x + 10= 22, x cubed divided by 4= x-- he loves these!) and it goes on and on... And he seems to get numbers/math in a way that's just astounding to everyone who encounters it. He can also apply systems to non-math things (ex add/subtract the planets based on their order from the sun, he added and subtracted letters of the alphabet-- correctly-- when he was 3, etc.)


So I really need new programs to use with him. And it is crucial that we do a lot of Math-- not just b/c he's a gifted kid who craves it (he's stumbled onto almost everything he knows by himself-- and we just give him the names for what he's doing or show him extensions of it), but because he's 2E and when he is engaged and learning, especially Math, he has far fewer issues (all day long) with his spectrum-ish behaviors.


It's been a while since we've chosen math programs and my daughter's needs were very different, so I did a quick browse on the board to see what programs people here are using these days. We've done some Singapore with him. I like it as a supplement but based on our experience I don't think it is best as a main program for him.


I looked into both Prof B and Hands On Equations b/c of posts I'd seen. They both look interesting. I tried a sample Prof B lesson with him yesterday and he loved it-- is asking to do more Bee math today. The website isn't great so it's hard to get a sense of what day to day use would be like in that program. I assume you'd just buy the CD and all books/materials for the level-- b/c they don't seem to bundle it into full packages? Hands on Equations also looked pretty interesting at first peek, though I haven't explored it in any depth.


Any thoughts on either program? Or others I may have missed? Would it be beneficial to use both-- or could it be redundant/confusing? Or are there other pairings that might be good? He would do math all day if we allowed it-- and since it does so much for him (and I use it to sneak other things in-- he's so happy doing it that he doesn't notice the therapy and language type stuff I'm doing with him while we're at it), I'm inclined to give him a hefty chunk of it each day. He does love to encounter different presentation methods for the same/similar concepts, and he spends much of his free time playing around with different ways of manipulating numbers.


I appreciate any advice or suggestions you can toss my way!


Glad to be back on the board-- I've missed it!




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Ah, been offline a bit-- nasty viral spell in the house! Thanks for the suggestions! I'll definitely check those out.


I just learned that my daughter's PS program will be using Hands on Equations in 4th grade this year. But you're right, it doesn't seem best for my son. And likely the PS program won't prove best for dd-- I'm already thinking of bringing her home :)


Thanks again!



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The program teaches math in a way that is a perfect fit for kids who are intuitive about math anyway.


The CD's provide a combination of lessons for parent and child to do together, and "drills" to solidify mastery of facts.


If you call Mrs. B, you will find her to be extremely knowledgeable and helpful with questions about placement and which materials to order. The level 1 CD would probably be much too easy for him, but there may be things that it would be helpful for him to learn in the level 2 Cd.


In addition to the CD, you might also want to order a level 2 workbook, however, if his handwriting is typical of most 5 yo's you will find that there isn't enough space for him to write the answers to the problems, so you may need to recopy them onto paper with larger lines.


I also recommend LOF. I think it would be ideal for your ds.



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I actually ordered both 1 and 2, because I thought it might help to go over a couple of the lessons from one-- since he's had no "formal" curriculum yet (still scratching my head how he's gotten quite so far :). And, I thought of using later part of 1 and through 2 for remedial work for dd, who hasn't always clicked with her math instruction, and what she's had so far in ps hasn't stuck. Glad I did it this way-- because we just decided to bring her home again, too, so now I'll have plenty to start them off with. And we'll launch from there...


I am considering LOF, too, especially for her because she's such a verbal/language sort. I think she'd enjoy it. And my son is into anything math. So I'm glad to hear another recommendation for it.


Thanks for your help!

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and as a remedial resource for struggling learners. I hope you will find it helpful, as I have.


Prof B uses storytelling techniques which are easy for highly verbal children like your dd to recall; this is a great advantage because children do not need to memorize a series of "steps" for problem solving.


I'd love to hear how it works out for you!

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