Jump to content


Math Help for 5th Grade! We hate Singapore.


Recommended Posts

My DS (10) finished up RightStart Math E last year, and because of his loathing of anything geometry (or more precisely, anything involving a t-square and board) we decided not to do RightStart G.


For this year I bought Singapore Math 5 (standards) along with LoF Fractions and Decimals/Percents as review.


He HATES Singapore! We tried it in first grade and he didn't like it then either, but I thought we would give it another try.


I dumped it, and we are currently reviewing with the Key to series.....

Fractions/Decimals/Percents, etc. He is flying through these and I'm not sure what to do with him now?


I am planning on using AoPS in a year or two and maybe RightStart G next year but I have no idea what to use for him now? Would the Key to Series along with LoF be enough for 5th grade?






Work-at-home, homeschooling mom to DS (10), DS (6), DD (4)!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Given that Life of Fred is a standalone curriculum already, if you supplement it with Keys to ... That should be fine.


My Mom is a former 5th grade teacher. My husband is a university professor in mathematics. I have tutored high school and U students in algebra through advanced calculus on the U payroll, and we all give Fred our stamp of approval as a primary program. Just as with any other math program, the student still has to do the work though. When I hear, "There's no math in it. My kid read the book in two weeks!" I find that to be self-explanatory.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you think LOF is working as a standalone program? For some it does and for some it doesn't. It was a cute story but a disaster as a math program for us (my daughter enjoys a good story but doesn't enjoy math being made into "some long story" and felt that it overshadowed the math). At the end of the first program, she came out not knowing anything more than when she had went in.

If you child is retaining the math with LOF, then adding in Key To should be fine for fifth grade.

Otherwise, I might suggest Math Mammoth. Singapore was not a good idea for us - we jumped in so *late* in the game, and coming from brick and mortar ps arithmetic, that it just didn't mesh well. Math Mammoth has been great though. We love Key To as well though :D.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you all, you've given me some more ideas.


I was hoping to not start a "new" program. He LOVES LoF, and


gets it, works through the problems and gets them right, but right now


it's review for him. We are doing it 3x a week and I'm hoping to run


through the Key to series for Fractions, Decimals,


Percents, by the end of December (he's flying through these - 5x week)


Then measurement review and geometry review.


Would you start pre-algebra if your child had a solid understanding of all


the above concepts? I like the the look of the Challenge Math, and the


Kaliedoscope math book in one the the siggys looked cool.


He REALLY does not like anything about Singapore, not sure why, he says


doesn't get the way they are trying to teach it. Coming from 4 years of


RightStart I thought it would be pretty seemless, but that's not the case.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think that Key To Fractions/Decimals/Percent/Measurement would be totally sufficient for 5th grade math, especially since your kid is enjoying them (that's a big part of math). They cover more than was covered in my fifth grade PS math program, and that curriculum prepared the class well for 7th grade Algebra.


After the Key To Series, the student should be ready for Pre-Algebra. I haven't seen AoPS Pre-Algebra, but I'm sure there'd only be a few topics that you'd have to teach a bridge into (negative numbers and exponents come to mind). The other thing is will that program match your kid's learning styl


I've been tutoring special needs students until they're soaring at/above grade level, and so that is a big part of my resource philosophy. I look for things that will get them to master the content, and then also see the underlying structure/beauty of the content. For the first part, how to do Algebra, Key To Algebra might be a good resource since your kid already seems to like the series. The program is very useful for teaching the "rules" of Algebra, but not the "why" behind it. Your kid will quickly pick up the steps to solving an equation, simplifying a polynomial, and graphing a function. These things aren't much more challenging at all than multiplying three digits by three digits, moving decimal points, or reading a map. Late elementary school kids can totally handle the procedures of Algebra, and then later on you can go into AoPS for the why. They won't get bogged down by incorrect procedures because they'be been exposed already, and they can take more time thinking about how the math applies to real life, and how different pieces fit together in the greater context.


In addition to the Key To Algebra series, Jacobs' Algebra is a great textbook for students who aren't quite ready for the full discovery approach in AoPS Alg. It covers the why of Algebra in-depth, but does it in a gentle way that's great for late elementary aged kids. I think of it as a math professor uncle sitting down and privately tutoring an eager elementary school nephew for fun afterschool. The first several chapters are pre-algebra anyway, so it would make for a nice transition. Jacobs' Algebra has large portions available for preview on GoogleBooks if you want to look inside.

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.

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.


  • Create New...