Jump to content

Menu

Math Question: Singapore & Mammoth


Guest StateDOG
 Share

Recommended Posts

Guest StateDOG

[i'm new here so I probably won't use all the correct vernacular....so forgive me in advance.]

 

I have a daughter in the 4th grade. She's 9. My wife is home schooling (with some help from me) her and her 6 year old kindergarten sister. We started off with Horizons math a few years ago. But this school year we switched to Singapore after reading many reviews. Some reviews put Singapore as an A+++++ curriculum. We just completed the 3B book at the end of October.

 

I was pleased with the material, but sometimes it seemed too short. Maybe we should have ordered some of the extra books so there was more work/practice for my daughter. But what was confusing, or maybe not confusing but a hassle, was the multiple books. Do some work in your work book, then work on paper using your text book. But check your answers, and answers might be in the teachers book, or the back of the text book, or something like that. So, it seemed good material, but quite scattered about. Is that just me? I had more patience with it than my wife.

 

I did like that Singapore seemed to teach more of a thought process than just simple math facts. I'll easily say I like it better than Horizons.

 

But after signing up on this forum last night I discovered Mammoth Math. It seems to be a very popular program here. I looked a little at the MM site last night and liked that it was seemingly all self contained. But I'll need to invest in a few print cartridges and a ream or two of paper, huh? I'm going to dig a little more, but it is a little concerning that it stops after 6th grade. Are there plans to continue the curriculum through high school? If not, what are the best options for 7th grade and above? Going back to Singapore? Something else?

 

For those familiar with both , what are the advantages of Singapore and Mammoth when compared to each other? Is it a Coke/Pepsi issue where both are similar and popular, but you just have to go with your favorite flavor?

 

We have started my 6 year old daughter in Singapore as well. I noticed that MM doesn't have a K element, but starts with 1st grade.

 

Oh, and what's the difference between "blue" and "light blue" in MM?

 

Thanks again for the advice.

Edited by StateDOG
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've only used grade 1 MM so far, but my son loves it, and I love that it's all in one place. I have printed out all of 1A, and I think it's only 100 pages, which I printed double sided, so 50 pieces of paper. The upper grades might be more pages. I used fast draft to save ink. The limited color is not essential, and using the lighter version works fine.

 

There is no K level, but there are recommendations of what to do for K on her site. There will be no 7+ levels, as the author recommends textbooks for those levels. She discusses your options for pre-algebra and algebra on the site.

 

I'm using the light blue series, which is a complete curriculum for each grade. The blue series is specific topics (eg, addition, time, etc.). If you want MM as your main curriculum, I would get the light blue.

 

There are several sample pages on the site. I recommend printing them out to try before you buy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We've been using MM for a few months and love it. You can either download the program and print yourself, or you can buy them already printed at Lulu.com. There is a link on the MM website if you choose to do it that way (which is what we did). The downside is that I will need to buy new books for my other kids, but I chose it over printing on my own. Many people love to own it and print as needed though.

 

The light blue series goes by grade level, like Singapore. The dark blue goes by topic instead (example: topic, time, covers grade 1-3).

 

I've never used Singapore so I can't compare. Good luck with your decision!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you look on the MM site she has suggestions for older grades (past 6th). I wish she contiued on with her program but she says there are programs past hers that are very good (she said just as good but I am not sure really). Check that out and you may feel more comfortable. I don't personally fell the need to have the same curriculum for all the years up to high school. I am not even sure one exists (that is not K12 or BJU or something). MM ROCKS!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

IMHO, if you're going to use Singapore to the best advantage, you have got to use the text, wkbk, challenging word problems, intensive problems, AND do daily mental math drills.

 

If you don't do that, again imho, you might as well use anything.

 

Also, if I remember correctly, 3 A/B was the turning point for the bar diagrams and you've got to get a handle on those.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have NOT used either program personally, so my response is based solely on reading others' opinions.

 

Math Mammoth is a program that is very very similar to Singapore Math ideologically, but is written for homeschoolers. The writer designed it based on Singapore and she follows them very closely. Everything is in ONE PLACE (rather than having a workbook, an instructor's guide, a separate book for practice problems, etc.).

 

Apparently the only difference other than having all instructions right there on the workpage is that she takes smaller leaps intuitively. She goes in the same direction and lands in the same place at the same time, but explains each thing incrementally rather than making some intuitive leaps. It is my understanding that Singapore is great for "mathy" kids, but sometimes the leaps can be a little much for those who don't naturally think mathematically.

 

Here are a few prior threads that may be helpful:

 

http://www.welltrainedmind.com/forums/showthread.php?t=164345&highlight=math+mammoth+singapore

 

http://www.welltrainedmind.com/forums/showthread.php?t=177719&highlight=math+mammoth+singapore

 

http://www.welltrainedmind.com/forums/showthread.php?t=180052&highlight=math+mammoth+singapore

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is my understanding, from living overseas when I was growing up and going to local schools, teaching for a year overseas, and other things I read, that textbooks are meant for student to buy, to own, and to review what they learned in class. They had to be thin an inexpensive but thorough enough to recall important information, along with some practice. That students would and did use them to study for tests and exams, to remind themselves or supplement what they are taught. That they were valued, not something to write in and throw away. And not meant to be the starting point for learning, but rather a continuing point after being taught.

 

Other books, similar to the workbook, Intensive Practice, and so on, are for practice, the more the better. Not really for teaching. To prepare for important exams. The more you practice, the faster and better you get, the more likely you will get the higher scores and in the better schools, to which you applied after elementary school.

 

The philosophy here in the US seems to be much different. Everything should be in one place, all there, everyone learning the same thing with the same amount of instruction and practice. And all instruction in the textbooks. Which young children are supposed to read and understand, and so has to be limited and not expand too much. And the textbooks are now supposed to be the starting point of learning - leave out the teacher, except perhaps as moderator. Kids need to learn on their own, be independent, not need a teacher, just be able to read and understand and follow.

 

I liked the different books for the Primary Mathematics. It was one of the redeeming qualities, I thought. I could teach, use the textbook for ideas on teaching, it had enough for me to see the complexities, I could make the leaps of logic and guide my student, I learned a lot from them, math was cool again, and fun, so fun to teach, not this boring read this and do that, and there was enough there for me to be sure my child understood; if he did not make the leap we talked about it, I could see his mind whirring, so to speak.

 

And then, since he did need to practice, there was such a choice. Sometimes, mostly, the workbook, as a start. But we would us parts of the other books, as needed or wanted. Sometimes the word problems in CWP got to be too much, so we did not do them for a while. The challengers in IP were fun, but did need a lot of discussion. And one of my sons needed more of that, and the other needed more of the workbook and the first part of the IP chapters, depending on the topic.

 

This choice was what I liked about the Primary Mathematics. I could tailor the math to my kids, not fit the kids to the math. I think they learned a lot more that way, and to have me teach them, not a book teach them.

 

It did take me too much time to look through the different books and decide what to assign based on my kids' abilities, though. And I had to study the material ahead of time, know it well myself. Funny thing, it rekindled an interest in math in me, which I think also helped my kids.

 

I can imagine how I would write it all in one book, textbook and workbook material, and just hand it to my kid, on days I did not have time, but it would have been different for one child than for the other, and nothing I came up with would have fit all of my kids well.

 

Now, English, wish I could have found something I could just hand my kids for that... Didn't work for that, unfortunately.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest StateDOG
Welcome, StateDOG :)

 

I think it's awesome that you are helping out your wife & kids! What a great daddy.

 

I use both SM & MM blue. They both bring something unique to the party. I suggest you do both also -- and keep Horizons around for drill & kill. You won't be disappointed.

 

After looking around a bit I see I'm pretty outnumbered in the gender department.

 

Does that not get expensive having SM/MM/Horizons all at the same time? And time consuming too? Well, maybe not to time consuming since they finished a semester of math by the end of October.

 

And everyone else, thanks for the links and advice. I've read a few of them before posting my own questions, but will read through the others as well.

 

And thanks for the welcome!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

After looking around a bit I see I'm pretty outnumbered in the gender department.

 

Does that not get expensive having SM/MM/Horizons all at the same time? And time consuming too? Well, maybe not to time consuming since they finished a semester of math by the end of October.

 

As for expense, it's not too much. MM is cheap. Horizons workbooks are $12.95 and SM is a bit spendy. We also have TT for computer math days. But I can use TT with my 2 dds and then resell it later. Math is a budget-buster here but we tend to magnate toward math.

 

And yes, you will fly through math since you can be hyper-focused at home as compared to the non-efficient hours in a school setting.

 

I have found that our hybrid approach keeps math fun & interesting. Not one math lesson is like another. Every day is different. My dds love it.

 

Dd6 is up in bed with her Horizons workbook literally begging to do more math instead of lights out. I caught her trying to do math by her nightlight. It's bizarre. :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome! You are a minority, but don't let that deter you!

 

 

advantages of Singapore and Mammoth when compared to each other[/b]? Is it a Coke/Pepsi issue where both are similar and popular, but you just have to go with your favorite flavor?

I found this at http://www.mathmammoth.com/comparisons.php from the author of MM, Maria:

 

With Singapore math:

Math Mammoth and Singapore Math are similar in the sense that both are mastery-based and emphasize conceptual understanding, and both use the "bar diagram" method for word problems.

 

Comparing the Math Mammoth Light Blue series (MM) with Singapore Math Primary Math U.S. Edition (SM):

 

  • Math Mammoth has more built-in review than Singapore Math. MM has cumulative reviews for each chapter, plus the word problems in each chapter are specifically designed so that the student has to do prior knowledge (such as use measuring units in multiplication problems, or use addition in a division chapter, etc.)
  • MM places more emphasis in the practice and learning of basic addition facts. I have understood that SM manuals tell the teacher to practice basic facts until they are mastered and the workbook pages don't offer much help with that. MM has many lessons about the concepts behind addition/subtraction facts (fact families) and similarly many lessons for multiplication tables.
  • Singapore Math's scope is slightly more advanced (quicker) in a few topics. SM covers single-digit multiplication and division a grade earlier (in MM, that is 3rd grade, in SM, 2nd). And, SM covers multi-digit multiplication and division a grade earlier as well (in MM that is 4th, and in SM it is 3rd). Decimals are covered quicker and earlier in SM. In grade 4, MM covers decimals up to 2 decimal digits and does not include decimal division, SM has them up to 3 decimal digits and includes all four operations.
  • In general, the scope of both curricula over 6 grades is quite similar, so that by 6th grade both curricula have covered fractions, decimals, percents, ratios, some easy algebra, and geometry topics up to the area of circle. However, MM includes more on statistics and probability than SM.

 

The above comparison does not apply to SM Primary Mathematics Standards Edition, which follows California standards and is therefore more advanced.

 

I think it is a Coke/Pepsi thing. My daughter has used SM US Ed. since 1B and is now in the middle of 2B. I have looked at MM several times because everything is in one spot, not three (HIG, text, workbook)! That being said, I can't make myself switch. I have a degree in statistics, so I very rarely use the HIG which cuts out one book. I sit down and do the problems with my daughter from the textbook (if there are any) and let her loose with the workbook. I would not say she is "mathy," but the program is working well for us.

 

I will agree with a few points Maria makes. SM does not have a lot of review. For that purpose, we add Abeka Math tests/drills (about $5/yr.) once per week because they are spiral. Also, SM does not have a lot of drill because the emphasis is more on the "why." I just recently added flashcards for addition and subtraction facts so she will stop "counting" and just spit out the answer. I will do this in 2A with my next child!

 

I don't think you can go wrong with either of them; a different means to the same end. Pick your flavor!

 

Maria also has this site: http://www.homeschoolmath.net/curriculum_reviews/.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[i

 

For those familiar with both , what are the advantages of Singapore and Mammoth when compared to each other? Is it a Coke/Pepsi issue where both are similar and popular, but you just have to go with your favorite flavor?

/QUOTE]

 

Ask away, and welcome.

 

I use SM (just finishing up 3A). I have some topics from MM for back up. Amusingly, I've never used them, because I get them when I have reached the last strand on the fraying rope (and me hanging above the alligators) on a topic, and when my son sees MORE BOOKS, he gives a gasp and suddenly "gets" the topic I have been excusing myself to splash water on my face for the last 2 weeks.(Note, this is humorous hyperbole, but he does see the book and buckle down.)

 

For us, personally, kiddo is really quirky with math. He can start blankly at 2+4 and then, with bright eyes, suggest the existance of i (meaning the square root of negative 1). So, I believe I need a nimble curriculum and an alert brain. We can take 4 times as long on a section the HIG allots a week on, and then blow through, e.g. every money question in 2 days. If I had a more methodical child, or felt overwhelmed, I'd go with MM. MM is my back up plan if we start falling behind (ie "not getting") SM.

 

You've seen SM. Go to the MM website and see the samples and view the video. Then go with your gut. Many of us here do just that, I'm betting. :001_smile:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome to the boards. You're outnumbered, but not alone.

 

Dd has used both SM and MM. We're in 2B right now and she prefers SM because of the cartoons and larger spaces to write her answers. She's been clicking along with regrouping and multiplication so I haven't whipped out MM to reinforce in a while, but I have it as a backup.

 

Both SM and MM are well thought out and do a great job of instilling number sense. You won't go wrong with either. It really does come down to which you prefer. MM is all in one place, somewhat less expensive, and a bit more incremental. SM has cartoons and is easier to customize to your child's level by choosing between the Intensive Practice and Extra Practice workbooks. The new Standards edition have more built in review, but I already owned the US edition so I don't know the details. MM has youtube videos for lots of topics, but Khan Academy has SM videos starting with 3A, so that's a wash, too.

 

If you're feeling frustrated with the back and forth between books with SM and want a clearer roadmap of where you're going, I'd choose MM. OTOH, if your dd balks at the page layout of MM, SM might be a better choice.

 

You really can't go wrong with either option.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

[ I had more patience with it than my wife.

 

 

Just a thought. If your wife is doing most of the teaching of math, and she is frustrated by SM, I would weigh that heavily. While a program has to match the child, unless the child really can't progress with something else, a program that makes the teacher scratch his/her eyes out will be counterproductive.

 

Also, I have my son work in the workbook, but for the text part, I get out a stiff small "slate" of whiteboard and work the problems with the child (I do the writing), so I teach as I go. I found paper more problematic. The white board is right by my side. We graduated from one with a number line at the top, to a double sided one....one side blank, the other is graph "paper". I pop out the text, have kiddo read me the problems, and I re-write them, or flesh out our knowns in the story problems (writing in the units, too), and I can flip it over to do the bar diagrams. This and the books live in a little "grip" that had a flat bottom and sits upright. I put the book I intend to start with the next session up on end, and the rest down with their spines sticking up so that when I pull out the grip, the book I'm to start with is "standing at attention" already, as it were.

 

(I type this out because I am always hungry for the nuts and bolts of what people do, for to know the road ahead, look to those who have already passed it.)

Edited by kalanamak
speeeeeeeeeelling, again.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The hassle of constantly switching back and forth among the textbook, workbook, extra workbooks, and instructors guide, is one of the main reasons I switched from Singapore to Math Mammoth. I also found the explanations to be better. It's so much more convenient (IMO) to have everything in one place, with very clear, explicit explanations written directly to the child.

 

The Light Blue books and the Blue books are almost identical in content — I don't recommend buying both, because you're just getting 2 copies of everything. Light Blue is designed to be a complete, grade-leveled curriculum, with 2 "books" per year just like Singapore. The Blue series takes the sections on one topic from one or more Light Blue books, and combines them into a single-topic book (like Fractions, or Decimals, or Place Value). Many of the Blue series books use worksheets from two or more grades. They are useful if you are using another curriculum and just need to supplement a single topic (e.g. your child is doing Horizons but struggling with fractions, you might buy one or two of the Blue series books on fractions). Some parents also prefer to choose the order in which to present the topics, so they might buy the entire Blue series and then choose which topics to teach when. I've owned both the Blue series (grades 1-3) and Light Blue (grades 3-6), and I very much prefer the Light Blue. I'd rather have it all laid out, in the order suggested by the author, plus the Light Blue series includes cumulative reviews and chapter tests, which don't come with the Blue books.

 

Many people here use multiple math programs because they feel that each one balances the strengths and weaknesses of each other. I don't think you need to supplement MM at all; it's very complete. It includes plenty of practice problems, including good challenging word problems; the Light Blue series includes cumulative reviews and chapter tests; and the conceptual explanations are as good (IMO) as you will find in any math program.

 

MM only goes up to 6th grade, but so does Singapore Primary Math. The additional levels of Singapore math do not have the same authors or format, so you'd be changing programs anyway. Most people who use Singapore for elementary switch to standard textbooks after 6th. Both Singapore and MM include many topics in 5th/6th grade that would be considered prealgebra in other programs, and IMO a student who did well with either Singapore or MM could easily go into either a rigorous prealgebra text or a lighter algebra I program. I keep bugging Maria Miller to please write a prealgebra program; maybe if enough people email her, she'll get the message! She has no intentions of ever writing a HS program though; she recommends Foerster's Algebra, which is a rigorous and well-respected algebra program.

 

As for printing costs, if you print on "Fast Draft" mode it uses MUCH less ink. You can also print in B&W if you want, but my kids prefer color. It's pretty cheap to buy the full Light Blue set, and you can use it with multiple kids, so in the long run it is still probably cheaper than Singapore, even with the printing.

 

Jackie

Edited by Corraleno
typo
Link to comment
Share on other sites

That is a good idea. I also teach using the textbook, not just give it to my student. I write most of the problems on the whiteboard. For the reviews and practices, I copy those pages and tape them to one side of a composition book, leaving the other side for ds to work them out on. We don't use the workbooks on those days, so it isn't going back and forth. I use the textbook, he uses either the composition book or the workbook. It works really well that way. I think the program is meant to be taught by a teacher, not a book. And adjusted to the student. I can throw in ideas from the guide if I think I need to. And there are more than enough ideas from the guide. I looked math Math Mammoth, but I guess I like teaching math, think my kids learn more that reading examples in a book, and the Primary Math is flexible enough for that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just something to note about Math Mammoth... The teaching being in the text does not mean you, the parent, don't have to teach. It just means you don't have to get out a separate book to teach.

 

When we do MM, I go over the new concept at the beginning of the lesson, help him work some problems using that concept, then have him do the rest (the practice) on his own while I go do something else, coming back to check on him once in a while. It is probably similar to how you would teach Singapore, except you aren't getting out multiple books. It is streamlined for homeschool use.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just something to note about Math Mammoth... The teaching being in the text does not mean you, the parent, don't have to teach. It just means you don't have to get out a separate book to teach.

 

When we do MM, I go over the new concept at the beginning of the lesson, help him work some problems using that concept, then have him do the rest (the practice) on his own while I go do something else, coming back to check on him once in a while. It is probably similar to how you would teach Singapore, except you aren't getting out multiple books. It is streamlined for homeschool use.

 

:iagree:

 

You cannot hand a kid a MM worksheet and walk away.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just something to note about Math Mammoth... The teaching being in the text does not mean you, the parent, don't have to teach. It just means you don't have to get out a separate book to teach.

 

When we do MM, I go over the new concept at the beginning of the lesson, help him work some problems using that concept, then have him do the rest (the practice) on his own while I go do something else, coming back to check on him once in a while. It is probably similar to how you would teach Singapore, except you aren't getting out multiple books. It is streamlined for homeschool use.

 

:iagree: I've never used Singapore, but I love MM. I can have multiple kids doing math while sitting at the table with me. I can easily give instruction to each of them when needed because all I need to do is read through the instructions that are right there on the page. When you have multiple children, this is a valuable feature! :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You might want to check out Life of Fred-Fractions and MEP. LoF-Fractions compliments 4A PERFECTLY and is FUN math that basically self teaches. MEP is a free British program for the excellence in mathematics. We use the nline interactive worksheets and my ds LOVES them (I love them too!). We use a Singapore, MEP, LoF combo and it seems like a great balance for us! For Singapore we use Textbook, Workbook, Mental Math & Intensive Practice. I skipped out on the CWP book because LoF is written like one big word problem. My ds considers the MEP Worksheets as "fun math games" but they are REALLY great mind benders and a totally different experience from LoF or Singapore. And again, MEP is FREE and totally worth checking into! I just wanted to let you know incase you hadn't heard of it yet. :) We'v never used MM as Singapore has never been "broken" for us so I've never felt a need to "fix" anything, yk?! I still may, at some point, look into MM for my youngers. I'm only teaching one right now (while wrangling the littles! ;)) I do reserve the right to change my mind at anytime! :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We are using Singapore1 and Math Mammoth. Together. We are a lower level, but this is working really well.

 

Since we are teaching the basic foundations still, I actually use Miquon to intro a topic - play with the rods and just have fun exploring the concept.

 

Then we read a page or two in the Singapore textbook and do it orally or with a small white board or even on our big DIY white board. Then we do the coresponding workbook pages.

 

Then we do some coresponding MM pages for extra practice. It is slightly different in its format but very similiar, pairs up beautifully. It makes the topic "stick" and gives him the practice he needs in a fun easy format he LOVES. Then I pull out the Word Problems book cuz he LOVES Word Problems.

 

I don't think I'd be happy with just one though. But paired together they are just awesome. My math hating child is now really excelling. And he enjoys math - especially the MM sheets.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just something to note about Math Mammoth... The teaching being in the text does not mean you, the parent, don't have to teach. It just means you don't have to get out a separate book to teach.
You cannot hand a kid a MM worksheet and walk away.

 

While this may be true for many kids in the lower grades, levels 4-6 can be largely self-teaching. DS12 (who is not particularly mathy) asked for help when he needed it, but for the most part he understood the instructions and could work the problems on his own. DD8, who likes to be as independent as possible (:glare:) did quite a bit of MM1 & 2 on her own — sometimes she would get worksheets out and do them for fun without me even knowing. She needs more help with MM3, but I usually have her at least read the instructions first and explain them back to me. Even if a parent choose to teach every lesson of MM themselves, it's still (IMO) less time-consuming than teaching Singapore.

 

Jackie

Link to comment
Share on other sites

While this may be true for many kids in the lower grades, levels 4-6 can be largely self-teaching. DS12 (who is not particularly mathy) asked for help when he needed it, but for the most part he understood the instructions and could work the problems on his own. DD8, who likes to be as independent as possible (:glare:) did quite a bit of MM1 & 2 on her own — sometimes she would get worksheets out and do them for fun without me even knowing. She needs more help with MM3, but I usually have her at least read the instructions first and explain them back to me. Even if a parent choose to teach every lesson of MM themselves, it's still (IMO) less time-consuming than teaching Singapore.

 

Jackie

:iagree: for a child who wants to work independently, MM is great! Plus my dd1 absorbs written information much better than listening to the same thing.:001_huh:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I thought it was fun to discuss the math and think about it. I guess I like teaching the math and that was important enough to me not to leave them on their own. I tried it once, let my son learn the math on his own, and he just did not get the depth as well. But then, mine learns better by hearing. My other son learns better by reading, I think, but I was more on top of things teaching him. I guess it is a good thing that there are many programs to choose from.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

IMHO, if you're going to use Singapore to the best advantage, you have got to use the text, wkbk, challenging word problems, intensive problems, AND do daily mental math drills.

 

If you don't do that, again imho, you might as well use anything.

 

.

 

I disagree. After a disaster with Saxon and Miquon with my oldest, we switched to Singapore - just the text and the workbook along with some math fact drill and math game Fridays. There weren't any HIGs back then. It has been more than adequate. I chose it after reviewing tons of math programs and haven't looked back. If we had done all of those extras with my kids, I might have well done Saxon as far as killing their love of math. What we loved about Singapore was the logical presentation and economy of effort - they got it the first time and didn't need endless problems to reinforce the concept.

 

My oldest (a junior in high school) has a math SAT score in the mid 700's, so I don't think he was held back by not doing all the extras. My other kids are also doing quite well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

SM works great for us with my 7yo. Teaches thinking, so I am glad with that. I use the HIG with manipulatives, as my dd really likes them, textbook, workbook. We also do the IP and CWP, too. And the Abeka worktext for second grade - which is way too easy, but more american.

 

There are lots of threads on this topic. I guess many of us are tortured by finding the... perfect math for our children :-) Good luck to you!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It is my understanding, from living overseas when I was growing up and going to local schools, teaching for a year overseas, and other things I read, that textbooks are meant for student to buy, to own, and to review what they learned in class. They had to be thin an inexpensive but thorough enough to recall important information, along with some practice. That students would and did use them to study for tests and exams, to remind themselves or supplement what they are taught. That they were valued, not something to write in and throw away. And not meant to be the starting point for learning, but rather a continuing point after being taught.

 

Other books, similar to the workbook, Intensive Practice, and so on, are for practice, the more the better. Not really for teaching. To prepare for important exams. The more you practice, the faster and better you get, the more likely you will get the higher scores and in the better schools, to which you applied after elementary school.

 

The philosophy here in the US seems to be much different. Everything should be in one place, all there, everyone learning the same thing with the same amount of instruction and practice. And all instruction in the textbooks. Which young children are supposed to read and understand, and so has to be limited and not expand too much. And the textbooks are now supposed to be the starting point of learning - leave out the teacher, except perhaps as moderator. Kids need to learn on their own, be independent, not need a teacher, just be able to read and understand and follow.

 

I liked the different books for the Primary Mathematics. It was one of the redeeming qualities, I thought. I could teach, use the textbook for ideas on teaching, it had enough for me to see the complexities, I could make the leaps of logic and guide my student, I learned a lot from them, math was cool again, and fun, so fun to teach, not this boring read this and do that, and there was enough there for me to be sure my child understood; if he did not make the leap we talked about it, I could see his mind whirring, so to speak.

 

And then, since he did need to practice, there was such a choice. Sometimes, mostly, the workbook, as a start. But we would us parts of the other books, as needed or wanted. Sometimes the word problems in CWP got to be too much, so we did not do them for a while. The challengers in IP were fun, but did need a lot of discussion. And one of my sons needed more of that, and the other needed more of the workbook and the first part of the IP chapters, depending on the topic.

 

This choice was what I liked about the Primary Mathematics. I could tailor the math to my kids, not fit the kids to the math. I think they learned a lot more that way, and to have me teach them, not a book teach them.

 

It did take me too much time to look through the different books and decide what to assign based on my kids' abilities, though. And I had to study the material ahead of time, know it well myself. Funny thing, it rekindled an interest in math in me, which I think also helped my kids.

 

I can imagine how I would write it all in one book, textbook and workbook material, and just hand it to my kid, on days I did not have time, but it would have been different for one child than for the other, and nothing I came up with would have fit all of my kids well.

 

Now, English, wish I could have found something I could just hand my kids for that... Didn't work for that, unfortunately.

 

:iagree::iagree:

I grew up with only textbooks and no workbooks at all. For all math, or language arts, we needed to copy all the problems (even the whole word problems) out on our own notebooks. It is just like Rod and Staff English for all my subjects that I learned in China. "Worktext and workbook" were not in my vocab until 6 years ago. So I truly am not bothered by having kids copy some questions out on paper to do.

I was tempted to switch to MM in August. I am so glad that I didn't because Singapore is working very well for me and my kids. I never use HIG because I can teach from the textbooks. Ds does WB and IP.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

While this may be true for many kids in the lower grades, levels 4-6 can be largely self-teaching. DS12 (who is not particularly mathy) asked for help when he needed it, but for the most part he understood the instructions and could work the problems on his own. DD8, who likes to be as independent as possible (:glare:) did quite a bit of MM1 & 2 on her own

 

 

This is exactly what happens in my house too. Both my dd10 & dd7 enjoy the independence of MM. DD7 especially dislikes being "taught" math. She insists on doing the work on her own and asking for help when she feels it is needed. I insist that she keep her RS abacus handy in case she gets stuck. We do, very briefly, go over a new lesson together to make sure there is understanding, but other than that she's pretty independent. So far this is working for us and she is progressing very nicely. With dd10, OTOH, I've come to the realization that her work must be checked immediately as we are having a slight problem with careless errors. Other than that, she enjoys the independence offered through the use of MM and really appreciates Maria's teaching methods.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is exactly what happens in my house too. Both my dd10 & dd7 enjoy the independence of MM. DD7 especially dislikes being "taught" math.

 

Dds 6 & 7 do MM semi-independently also, but I need to be close by when they are introduced to a new concept. I can't imagine many 6 - 8 year-olds doing MM without parental instruction. Yes, it is convenient that one doesn't need a separate TM, but that does not imply that a parent isn't needed. Finnish/Asian-style math assumes the vital role of the parent-teacher, imho. Dd6 is sitting here next to me doing her Horizons workbook and can do it on her own for the most part. But math is a dialogue -- especially with wee ones.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...