Chrysalis Academy Posted November 15, 2011 Share Posted November 15, 2011 Hi Hive, There have been a couple of great threads this week on 4th graders and math, which I've read avidly and found helpful. But, I could use some words of wisdom from you guys on my DD9's weird math behaviors . . . She was in ps through the 1st quarter of 4th grade - which means we have been homeschooling for 2 weeks. She has always gotten 4s & 5s (As & Bs) on her report cards, and she scored Advanced on all the math sections of the CA STAR test at the end of 2nd & 3rd grades. So, she must have been learning all she should, right???!!! 4th grade was a bad fit for her for a number of reasons - math included. She's very bright, very verbal, id'd as gifted, but young for her grade (just turned 9) and socially & emotionally somewhat immature. By this I mean she has very little ability to inhibit/filter - she sings, hums, wiggles, squirms, gets distracted, etc. very easily. This disconnect between her intellectual abilities and her self control/behavior abilities made the classroom a challenge for her (and her teacher;)) because she grasped the material quickly, then got bored and distracted and distracting too. She also missed a couple of weeks of school for health reasons, got very far behind in math, and was very very stressed about the quantity of work she needed to do to cach up. For this and other reasons, I decided to start homeschooling her now (I had been planning to start next year). So, what to do for math? I lurked here and learned about different curricula, I checked out TT and had her do the placement - she scored 97% on the Math 4 placement, and 87% on the Math 5 placement, which according to their rubric meant she should start with Math 6 - though I knew she wasn't ready for that, as she hadn't learned multiplying with 2 digits yet, nor done much with decimals. This all seemed too good to be true - but I wanted more info, and had read good things about MM, so I had her do the MM placement. Ugh. She scored only 68% on the 3rd grade end-of-year test. And what I realized in looking at the results is that while she can perform all the basic operations on numbers, she has *no clue* about what is going on conceptually!! Throw her a word problem out of context, she's lost. She can't do elapsed time, measurements, money, or anything practical with numbers. This was discouraging, and made me wonder what the heck all these assessments are assessing, anyway??? (not the MM ones, the PS ones). So, I figured I'd better do MM with her, to help her back up and get a grasp of what math is all about - conceptually. I realized that she is bright enough that she has basically been faking understanding it for all her years in PS. That ends now. We will understand math, or die trying!!! For the first couple of weeks we did worksheets from the 3rd grade level of MM on the things she tested weak on. Then, yesterday, we started MM 4A. She can do it, but it is *such* a struggle!! I have to sit with her the whole time, even on problems she knows how to do - she gets discouraged and gives up, or gets sloppy and doesn't read the directions. It took us an hour today to do 1 1/2 pages!!!This is *way* more hand-holding than I had anticipated, and I am having such a hard time not getting frustrated and impatient with her (well, ok, I am f&i, but I'm trying not to show it ;) Geez, if anyone is still with me after all that, what do you think? Persist with MM? Sit with her as long as it takes? Do 2 pages a day, or do however much she can before she gets frustrated and loses it? Work for an hour and settle for how much ever we get done? Slit my wrists??? I know some of it is just that MM is new, and it's forcing her to *think* for a change, not just spew back operations. I am willing to baby her through this at the beginning, but I don't want to become a crutch - at some point she is going to need to be able to do the work she already knows how to do independently of me sitting with her. And how to deal with the lack of focus? The distractability, bouncing, singing, goofiness? Any suggestions or words of wisdom would be soooo welcome!! FWIW, other subjects are going very well, though I deal with the distractibility in those often, too. Thank you already!!!! Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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