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Has anyone used Aleks as full curriculum?

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My DS has been using Saxon for a while now. He is currently doing 8/7.He has been complaining a lot about math lately so I thought I would give him a break by trying the Aleks free trial. He loves it!!! I will probably keep it as a supplement but wanted to see if anyone has used Aleks exclusively for math. He is really resisting Saxon now that he has found something he likes.

Thanks for all your help!!!:001_smile:

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I am a math teacher and I use ALEKS quite a bit with some of the students in my co-op class so I am pretty familiar with the program. In my opinion, it is NOT a complete stand-alone program. It is a GREAT supplement and review tool and it is good at filling in gaps, but there is just not enough critical thinking involved to be a stand-alone program.


The thing I like about it:

1. If they don't master a concept it comes back to "haunt" them again.

2. Completing a pie (or slice) is a good motivator to students.

3. It is student lead, so they seem to enjoy the choice that they have.


The things I don't like about it:

1. There are no (or next to no) critical thinking problems. All the problems are done exactly the same way, so a kid can memorize how to do a certain kind of problem that they give, but have NO understanding of why they are doing what they are doing and if a problem were given that was different than the way ALEKS words it, the student wouldn't know how to do the problem. For example, ALEKS teaches how to add, divide, multiply, and subtract fractions, but never gives them word problems where they have to decide which operations they should use.

2. There is only one mode of explanation, so if a kid doesn't get the written explanation, there is no other resources to get more help.

3. It can be (depending on how the child procedes) be choppy-one topic today and a totally unrelated one the next day.


Now, I have some students who do only ALEKS because they refuse to do any other math, and my opinion is that doing ALEKS alone is better than NOT doing math at all. :-) However, if they were my kids, I would definitely substitute with critical thinking/story problem books of some kind.

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Thanks for the input! That was my thought all along, but since we have only had ALEKS 2 weeks, I am not that familiar with the program. It has been a nice break from Saxon and I think we will continue to supplement with it.

I may just need to investigate other pre-algebra programs to have a change from Saxon. It has been a solid program but he may just need a change.

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I'm using it now to review Geometry and Algebra 2. I agree that it isn't good as a full curriculum. I've tweaked it a little, and I'm learning more now because I--


(1) create computer flash cards of the new material I encounter. I use Mnemosyne to create the flash cards and to review them. I review them once daily.

(2) Every time they give me the opportunity for "more practice," I take it. It helps me to be able to do the problems faster and helps me to remember how to do that problem days later.

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