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help please...BJU Pre Alg, Saxon 8/7 or 1/2, Lials BCM or Pre Alg, MUS Pre Alg????


Robin in DFW
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I am moving my ds13 into pre algebra in a few weeks. There are so many choices and methods!!!

 

We want something straight forward, with review (doesn't need to be constant, though) that has good lesson explanations that are not too long. Too much in one lesson causes my son to zone out during teaching time.

 

He is pretty decent at math. He always seems to understand new concepts without much effort and doesn't really struggle.

 

He has used Saxon 3, 6/5, 7/6 and tiny bit of 8/7...then we moved to BCM. It has been pretty easy for him...BUT, the book is visually overwhelming, I think. He has trouble doing only the odds or whatever I assign...he gets off-track...the math is not an issue but finding his place over and over really slows his progress. I think he would benefit from something that allowed him to work problems 1 through ??? in order without skipping.

 

Is there something like this...how about BJU or MUS??? I've never used these, but am willing to have a look if either one seems like it would fit our criteria.

 

Or maybe I just need to have him tough it out with BCM???

 

Or just go back to Saxon 8/7 for pre algebra???

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We want something straight forward, with review (doesn't need to be constant, though) that has good lesson explanations that are not too long. Too much in one lesson causes my son to zone out during teaching time.

 

QUOTE]

 

I'd suggest mathusee based on the above statement. I personally am using Saxon 8/7 right now, but boy are the lessons long....... MUS is much more straightforward and the new editions have plenty of review.

 

My 2 cents worth.

 

Sandra

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The old edition of BJU prealgebra is not at all overwhelming. It is still being used in their online/DVD/harddive classes so is still available for purchase [eta apparently BJU is no longer selling the old 1st edition on their website. They must only be including them in their online/dvd/hardrive classes until a class with the new 2nd ed is recorded]. It's also quite easy to find used. The lessons are visually simple and well laid out. We are using it and my ds is doing well.

 

The brand new edition of BJU prealgebra is far more visually overwhelming. I looked at it but decided against it. My ds and I are visual people and when there is too much instruction/writing/etc. on a page we both get extremely overwhelmed to the point of melt down.

 

After using both Saxon (several years) and MUS (Gamma & Geometry), I personally cannot recommend either...though I know many use and love them.

 

I hear that Lials BCM is great for prealg, but we are happy with BJU so I have not investigated further.

Edited by Melissa in CA
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geez...there have been times when the lesson is 6 pages long!!! Then, there are over 100 problems to sort through and circle for my ds.

 

I am making myself sick over this decision.

 

I have read the reviews from various websites and there are so many negative ones about Saxon. Not as many about BJU or MUS. Not that much on BCM since few people use it.

 

I just hate this feeling...I want to cry.

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geez...there have been times when the lesson is 6 pages long!!! Then, there are over 100 problems to sort through and circle for my ds.

 

I am making myself sick over this decision.

 

I have read the reviews from various websites and there are so many negative ones about Saxon. Not as many about BJU or MUS. Not that much on BCM since few people use it.

 

I just hate this feeling...I want to cry.

 

6 pages long?? Yikes. :confused:

 

Ditch it and get yourself a used set of BJU's 1st ed. prealgebra http://www.bjupress.com/product/236091?path=3450&samplePage=9#lookInside. Your son will thank you for it. ;)

 

Here is a sample of thier new 2nd ed.:http://www.bjupress.com/product/233114?path=3391&samplePage=10#lookInside

 

Like I previously mentioned, I like the 1st edition better. The 2nd ed. is too cluttered for us, though it does look like a great math text!

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We went through this with my son. The BCM book is not meant to be done lesson by lesson. You pick which problems you want your child to do.

 

Because of this I do not use Lial's or Chalkdust products. I love the idea of the programs, but I do not have the wherewithall to circle problems based on my child's needs (more word probls, more long div, whatever).

 

Because Saxon was not working with my ds, we went to Lial's then Chalkdust, then to Teaching Textbooks. TT finally clicked after many wasted months and many frustrated school days regarding math.

 

The clear lesson progression (open book, do this then this then this) was very important in the midst of math frustration and I don't think it's mentioned enough when considering those programs. Everyone says how excellent they are in their formulaic teaching of the actual math but the user friendliness for a person who struggles already is just not there in my opinion.

 

Now for my dd, whom Saxon IS working for, we will stay with it and when she needs it, move to the Saxon Teacher or Art Reed helps for instruction. That's not to say we haven't had to go back and review things that were missed. I should also add we have had comments about how long Saxon takes and I don't think she loves that part of it. BUT I do know when she actually knows!!! the math, the problems do not take anywhere near as long and the whole lesson is much less painful. I think we don't give enough attention to that as moms and just start to allow the complaints fog our impression of the program as a whole.

 

I wish!!! I had stayed with Saxon for my guy. We hit some bumps and I blamed it on curricula. He would be much further ahead than he is now had I stuck to my guns and not jumped around with math at this level. Pre-Algebra and Algebra are hard enough without getting used to a new curricula on top of that.

 

Just my 2Cs.

HTH.

Edited by momee
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I have looked at math stuff until I'm bleary-eyed and am still undecided. I have to make a decision soon. We are going to start our school in a week or two.

 

The thing is, I look at the Lial's books and the explanations are so clear and step-by-step that it seems goofy to look elsewhere.

 

BUT...my ds is not independent AT ALL with this curriculum. If there was a day when I could not be available, he would not do the lesson because of the length and the sheer volume of information. I don't have him work alone. I do the teaching, he does the work on his own.

 

My dd17, however, has been very independent all along and has never really wanted much teaching help. She has used TT Alg 1 and Geometry, and then on to Lial's Intermediate...all self taught. There is no way my ds can do those Lial's books alone. Saxon...probably, if he had to.

 

My fears with Saxon are fueled by ALL THE NEGATIVE REVIEWS I read EVERYWHERE. TT is the same...so much negative information.

 

I can't sit down and really compare tables of content because I don't really know what should be in them in the first place. So, I go by what everyone reports, especially the more math-oriented folks.

 

It's just very frustrating to have gone through all this already with my dd17 and to now go through it again with ds13.

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Sometimes you have to live/ school with blinders on.

 

Multiple opinions can cause us to second guess ourselves.

 

(sometimes when need to just plug on through)

 

Influences can help or hinder. sometimes both :001_smile:

 

I know you'll settle on the perfect math plan for you and your child.

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