# How do You do MUS??

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For those that use MUS for the younger grades, how involved are you with their lesson? Do you do the video and activity and turn them loose with their worksheet or do you stay with them and walk them through it?

Do you use the tests? Do you grade their papers and tests?

This morning we did a test and my son was in tears, I helped him some but not on a specific problem more just telling him to break it down in easier steps and such, so I was just wondering how other's do this!

TIA :)

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For my special needs 6th grader and my 3rd grader I have them watch the video themselves then have the do the first worksheet. I sit at my desk right next to them bwhile they do their work. I check in every few minutes to be sure that they are on task and understand the work. At the end (or when asked for help) I check each problem to be sure that they understood the concept. After the first day of the week I usually don't have to help my younger son, except sometimes for a word problem he doesn't understand on the review pages. We do the "test" on Fridays and I check them right away, I have my students rework any missed problems with me right next to them - if there is a significant problem (more than one or two missed other than simple careless errors) then I have them do more work on the concept the following week.

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After a lot of trial, and a whole bunch of error ---- I sit by the computer monitor, which sits by the big white board on the wall and play the MUS dvd on the computer. We watch it. I pause it numerous times to write on the white board. I usually try to stop it right after he gives a problem, but before someone says the answer so that we can work it out. I then give many more examples and teach what he just taught. kwim? For the worksheets, sometimes I sit with her to do the problems, other times she doesn't need me.

After three years, I finally found a system for math that works for us. It's a combination of Horizons and MUS. I let Horizons lead the way. We are going full steam, straight ahead. I give test for Horizons. For MUS we go at a slower, no hurry to get there pace. It's working great for us. Sometimes MUS reinforces something taught in Horizons, sometimes it teaches a whole new way to look at something, sometimes it introduces the topic. Sounds crazy, but it's working for us!

hth

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My ds9 started MUS with Alpha. He is currently working on Epsilon. We watch the video together, he does the worksheets and calls me if he doesn't understand. I use to skip some of the worksheets, if he passed the test, he can move on. Sometimes we don't test because I know that he has it down. Now we do all the worksheets because I really, really want him to get the concept. He does the test too. If he makes a mistake, we just go over what he did wrong and then correct it together.

I wished we didn't rush through Delta because he's having a hard time with long division. He knows how to do it, it just takes him FOR-E-VER. So now we do a lesson on Epsilon and do worksheets, plus watching a Delta lesson. He does Life of Fred Fractions on Mondays (he loves that!).:D

**Oh, I do the same with dd6 who is in Alpha now. She loves it! She's just like her big bro.

Edited by daisychics
Edited to add: I do stop the dvd before the kids answer too!
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I watch the video together with my child. Usually they understand it quite well, but from time to time there might be confusion so we will discuss further.

My kids do two pages per day without me. If the material is more difficult they do one page. If they need help, I sit next to them and talk it through and help them.

We do use the tests. They are usually able to test when they have finished the workbook pages. Every now and then, for a more challenging unit, if it is clear they have not mastered the material, I use the MUS website to generate more worksheets or ask dh to help me make more worksheets. When I know they have mastered the material, they take the test. I do not ever help them with a test unless the confusion has nothing to do with the math involved (like if the directions are confusing). They have to be able to do the math independently for a test.

They also do about ten minutes of drill per day from other sources. I would do this with them regardless of curriculum--quick recall of basic math facts makes advanced math operations sooooo much easier.

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We watch the video at the beginning of each lesson. I started by watching with my kids, but now they watch it on their own (we have a house with a Great Room, so they're in the living room and I'm in the kitchen usually picking up or helping another child...but I'm really in the same room. KNIM? ) If it's a really brand new concept, or something more challenging, I'll watch with them, but generally they are fine on their own. Then they do the first page of that lesson. They don't often need help.

My 6 yr. old does it mostly on her own, but often needs help with the word problems.

I do not use the test booklets at all. I can see what they are doing each day, so the test is really nothing more than an additional worksheet. I don't need it because I can already see from their daily work what they are understanding and what they aren't. I don't grade my kids at all. At their ages, I don't have to, and I really want to focus on what they understand, rather than how they perform, particularly in math. If something becomes so frustrating that it brings tears we take a break or work through it slowly or come back to it another day. (unless it's a power struggle, which dd has been known to engage in) I don't there's any need for little ones to feel that kind of stress.

Edit to add: Is this his first year with it? Alpha or Primer? I did help dd much more last year than this year. She is finishing Alpha and rarely uses the blocks now, but in the beginning she needed much more help from me.

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For those that use MUS for the younger grades, how involved are you with their lesson?

Very involved. The younger the student the more involved I am.

Do you do the video and activity and turn them loose with their worksheet or do you stay with them and walk them through it?

NO

For a 6yo. I watch the video and then teach the lesson. I watch and help as needed with each problem.

My 8yo watches the video and I watch him do the first page. If I feel like he understands the concept I encourage him to do the rest of the week without my assistance.

Do you use the tests?

Not with my younger students. Since I'm so involved there is no need.

As my kids become more independant then I will introduce the tests. I will probably add the tests for 8yo next year ( level Delta). For a child who struggles with math I would not add the tests until they get a little older.

Do you grade their papers and tests?

No. Any worksheets my 8yo completes without my assistance gets reviewed and I have him rework any missed problems. If he makes several errors, we will review the material and I will stay more involved until he understands the lesson.

Since mastery is the goal and you work through MUS at a pace that the child masters the material , grading really doesn't serve a real purpose. If you are involved with the lesson then the test don't really serve a purpose. You will know if they understand the material.

As my kids become more independant and I become less involved then having them take the test becomes useful. I still do not grade the test. I have them rework any missed problems and look for gaps in their understanding of the material for review.

I don't want my younger students to think that making a 80% on a test is good enough! I want them to think that the ultimate goal is to complete each math problem correctly.

This morning we did a test and my son was in tears, I helped him some but not on a specific problem more just telling him to break it down in easier steps and such, so I was just wondering how other's do this!

:grouphug:

No tears with the lessons and worksheets? Just the tests?

If he is enjoying the program and not the test then I would skip the tests. IF he is upset doing the lessons and worksheets then I would start looking at other math programs. 6yo is too young to be crying over Math!

TIA :)

Best of luck, mama!

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I watch the video's with them each time, and sometimes we watch it a second time.

The tests are something they earn! :D

They don't get the test til they prove mastery!

We always do lesson A, and if I see they have it (some is review) then we do lesson D (the review) as a new or an old item is added, and we can do to review together.

If after doing A, I see a struggle we do B, and still struggle, re-watch the video and download some worksheets from the site.

When they do earn the test, there is complete comfort in knowing it already! This keeps the stress down, and the fridge happy with look Dad, I tested today papers to show!!

If they get the test and still have concept questions, I smile and sneak the test away, and say, looks like I stole your test, let's try and work this out some more, so the test will be more fun tomorrow!

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It depended on the specific dc and the age. With my middle dd, she usually watched the video/DVD and did the work; I helped her if she didn't understand something. However, we ended up doing SM along with it and made SM the main math. If she understood it well and did well on the first worksheet, she did one review sheet and moved onto the next lesson. In Epsilon she did most of the worksheets in the multiplying and dividing fractions sections, and wherever she needed to find the LCD (aka LCM). She rarely did the tests.

With ds, I had to help him with the first level he did of MUS because he couldn't write properly yet. As time went on, I only helped him if he still didn't understand the assignment.

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After three years, I finally found a system for math that works for us. It's a combination of Horizons and MUS. I let Horizons lead the way. We are going full steam, straight ahead. I give test for Horizons. For MUS we go at a slower, no hurry to get there pace. It's working great for us. Sometimes MUS reinforces something taught in Horizons, sometimes it teaches a whole new way to look at something, sometimes it introduces the topic. Sounds crazy, but it's working for us!

hth

Same thing here, but switched. We let MUS lead, and run Horizons behind grade level. I like that they are getting the concepts taught the MUS way, but getting the variety and review of Horizons.

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Thank you for all the input!!

Edit to add: Is this his first year with it? Alpha or Primer? I did help dd much more last year than this year. She is finishing Alpha and rarely uses the blocks now, but in the beginning she needed much more help from me.

My ds is 6 (almost 7) and we just started working with MUS Alpha. This past week we have been working on Lesson 3, learning the color blocks. The past couple of weeks have been easy for him and this week was pretty easy too. He is loving MUS doing well. Today we got ready for a test. The first one we have tried. I explained to him that I could not help him with his problems. He did the first part fine. I read the instructions and did great. When he got to the part about coloring the blocks he just sat there and stared... for a long time, then started crying, just saying he couldn't do it, he couldn't remember. I asked him which one he was working on and he said all of them. I told him to only work one block at a time and then he flew through it. The next two problems were review of what we had done the last two weeks. He got hung up again and the tears started... again. It was writing from 0-20 and he had got off somewhere and he knew it but couldn't find it. I didn't know if I should just let it go or not so I told him if he thought something was wrong to go back to the begininng and check his work. When all was said and done he got everything right. I just wanted to make sure that I wasn't making it too easy or hard for him and if I even needed to do the tests with a 6yr old and grade it.

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My son watched the lesson, then did the page of work (or test). I believe it worked out to about a page a day for the school year.

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I just wanted to make sure that I wasn't making it too easy or hard for him and if I even needed to do the tests with a 6yr old and grade it.

In the early years, my son knew a lot of what was taught, so I would give him the test first, and if he did well, we skipped the lesson. He liked that. Once we got to the right level, I treated the tests just like the lesson pages. We used MUS from K through Algebra (in 7th grade). I never made a big deal of the tests.

9th grade is another matter. At 6yo, he doesn't need the stress, imo. :chillpill:

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