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Right Start E to AOPS PreAlgebra: Do I need something else in between?


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I have read a ton of threads on here about AOPS; however I am still unsure where we should go after RightStart E.

 

Here is a bit of our background: I have supplemented a little bit along the way, but this year I have only added IXL work to RightStart E. RightStart has been the perfect fit for my son, and this year, he hasn't had too much trouble with the material. But this has been his best year. My son has been diagnosed with ADHD, poor working memory, and slow written motor speed. All of these issues have made RightStart the perfect math curriculum for him due to the emphasis on mental math and the short lessons. Through diet changes over the past three months, we have had a lot of improvement with focus and have almost zero melt-downs over math (which is not something I can say about previous years). He has always tested somewhere between 55 - 80% on the IOWA test for math, but I am not sure how much of his difficulty focusing and motor speed has been affected his scores. Our neuroed psych testing revealed he scored in the 97 percentile for math IQ. I have always felt he had a high aptitude for math, despite his meltdowns which left him unable to add 2+2 at times! So, to make a long story long, I feel like he is capable of a rigorous/advanced math curriculum, but he has some special challenges. He has gotten used to very short lessons. And sometimes short lessons take him a long time!

 

Last year I purchased the Math Mammoth downloads thinking they would be great for mastery work. He started crying just from looking at the page alone! So when I read that people recommend spending some time working through MM 6 before starting AOPS, I am not sure that would work well for us. Plus, I don't like the fact that I have to decide what constitutes a "lesson."

 

I will have 4 other children at home (including a new baby!) when we start schooling next year. This is my hand-holder math child, so I really need to ease him to more independent math work. I don't mind still walking him through the lesson, but I need him to be able to tackle things independently after my part. Right now he requires me to be within arm's reach for questions for the entire lesson - and that includes his worksheet work. Therefore, he is constantly interrupting my time working with his brother - and this takes away from his brother.

 

I have called the Rightstart hotline, but aside from recommending VT, they aren't much help. They had never heard of AOPS.

 

So here are my questions:

 

Do I spend a year in Singapore 6 A and B, or is that too much of a jump? Do I need to back up to 5A and 5B?

 

Do I work through Right Start (G) Geometry alongside whatever we do?

 

Do I do RightStart Geometry and Life of Fred Decimals, Fractions, and Percents? Would that be enough?

 

Do I just abandon the thought of AOPS and begin VideoText and RS G? I was able to buy VT-Module A for $5 locally last summer, so I already own it.

 

Do I go ahead and jump into AOPS and spend some time reviewing any "trouble" concepts as we identify them?

 

My son will be 10 in May when we finish up Right Start E. Please give me any feedback that you think would be helpful!

 

Thank you very much for your insight!

 

 

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I think RS E to AOPS would be an awfully big jump. I also think that trying to jump into an independent program AND to a far more difficult program as well would be overwhelming for most kids, not to mention an easily distracted 10 year old boy.

 

Y ou might add Russian Math 6 to your list of possibilities.

 

I think Jousting Armadillos + RS G might also be a good fit for him, but I don't think it would fulfill your desire for him to work independently. Frankly, though, I'm not sure you're going to find something where he *can* work independently, given your description of him. Many, many 10 year olds are not ready for this.

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Well, I am not looking for completely independent work - just a little more breathing room! I know that Right Start G is supposed to begin the transition to more independent work - or at least that is what the RS rep told me last year at convention! Thanks for your suggestions. I have never heard of either of those options. I was pretty sure the jump was too big, but I know there are people on here with 5th graders in AOP. That said, I am not trying to win a race to get to Algebra as early as possible! Thank you for the feedback!

 

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I agree AoPS is too much based on all that was described.  You may want to consider a program which offers online instruction which can assist with independence:

 

Derek Owens Pre-Algebra

Jann in Texas

TabletClass Pre-Algebra

 

We used and really liked TabletClass.  But it was pretty advanced and challenging.  So I would recommend something before it which is a bit easier after Right Start Derek Owens may be a perfect fit.  DO and TC offer free sample lessons which you could both listen to.  MUS is also independent which we've used.  Though it is not very challenging.  Some have used it as a bridge to more challenging material to follow. 
 
If he had a meltdown with MM I'm not sure SM would be a good fit either, especially since it is of a similar 'Asian' style of instruction.  It is also known to require more teacher work than MM.  It is definitely more confusing with all the different books, etc...
 
ETA:  I just noticed you already have VT.  Why not simply give it a trial run and see what you both think?  Reviews seem a bit mixed where it seems to work better for some than others.
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I was just looking at AoPS pre-algebra last week, looking at the pre-test there is some things that would need to be covered before using it (my son is about half=way through RSE). IIRC there is not enough work on decimals and fractions. I'm trying to figure out what to do w/ ds as well. RS hasn't been working the best for us this year. My ds has poor working memory as well and has found the converting work to be very taxing, as he just cannot keep all the numbers in his head at the same time. Ds is slow w/ writing as well. 

 

I've considering Jousting Armadillos. I've considered Life of Fred, he generally loves a narrative but from what I've heard about LoF the teaching is more procedural. Ds melts w/ MM as well (although I cannot speak for a pp it is not due so much to the presentation but the layout of the page), although I like the idea especially as she sells it as a package. I looked at Galore Park, which I liked the best of what I've seen but there is still much too much on the page. The material is written to the student though.

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Yes, our issue with Math Mammoth has everything to do with the layout and visual overload and nothing to do with the actual instruction/Asian methodology.

 

We've used SM before as a supplement, but I only used the workbooks, not the textbooks. I used them simply as worksheets for extra practice in between RighStart levels. My downside to using SM is that I would have to learn the Singapore way of teaching. He was able to handle the amount of practice and the page layouts; however, I don't think we've supplemented with any SM since 2B. It has been a little while.

 

I have been assigning IXL standards that correspond to RightStart lessons for extra fraction, decimal, and percent work, but I know he still needs more review. We're on lesson 89, so we're more than halfway through.

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A friend of mine uses CLE math. I was checking out their samples for CLE 6 today, and it looked pretty straight forward. Would it be helpful to have him spend a year bridging to a pre-algebra curriculum where we just focus on mastery of the content we've pretty much already learned? I plan on introducing some of the logic puzzles that SWB recommends in the WTM, so he'd still be challenged to think outside the box. CLE seems to have simple instructions written to the student and clean pages that wouldn't overwhelm him. Then we could spend some time introducing something like the Jousting Armadillos and then jump into AoPS? Are there criticisms of CLE out there? I haven't focused on more traditional math programs since we were Saxon 1 failures.

 

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A friend of mine uses CLE math. I was checking out their samples for CLE 6 today, and it looked pretty straight forward. Would it be helpful to have him spend a year bridging to a pre-algebra curriculum where we just focus on mastery of the content we've pretty much already learned? I plan on introducing some of the logic puzzles that SWB recommends in the WTM, so he'd still be challenged to think outside the box. CLE seems to have simple instructions written to the student and clean pages that wouldn't overwhelm him. Then we could spend some time introducing something like the Jousting Armadillos and then jump into AoPS? Are there criticisms of CLE out there? I haven't focused on more traditional math programs since we were Saxon 1 failures.

 

We use CLE and really like its gentle spiral approach which works well for our daughters.  It is very open and go as it is written toward the student.  I am generally a CLE fan.  The one critique of CLE from those using it has been that it does not provide enough conceptual instruction.  I also don't find it the most challenging, though not bad.  We actually supplement with Math Mammoth and Hands on Equations for these reasons.  For your purposes of review CLE could work.  However I'm not sure how much more it would add in terms of challenge or conceptual development. If SM works for you then that may be your best bet. 
 
If you are preparing now for more challenging math, specifically AoPS, there are are certain prerequisite skills which need to be developed now.  These skills don't typically come from standard Math programs.  They include:
 
1.  The ability and willingness to struggle for longer periods of time with difficult problems.  AoPS is designed for students to struggle which is the opposite many other programs which focus on ease of use.   
​2.  Acceptance that the child won't always get 100%.  Many of the math problems are pulled directly from math competitions.  Prior to AoPS and also TabletClass ds12 was used to breezing through math and getting 90-100% on all his tests.  Initially this was hard to accept and understand as a different paradigm.  
3.  Enjoying math along with discovering new ways to solve things even if never seen before.  This is known as the Discovery Approach.  
 
If you want to develop these skills you will need to specifically look for programs and/or supplements which are known for them.  I think SM and MM are good choices along with other supplementals.  
 
Some have said AoPS was not designed for the average or even good math student but rather for the top 5%.   I was not sure ds12 fell into that category.  For example he wouldn't do math just for fun in his free time as some kids apparently do.  Though he loves to puzzle, create origami, program, etc...  So he has a natural desire and ability to 'focus' for extended periods of time (hours) while performing complex/challenging tasks.  I'm not sure AoPS couldn't be used with more than 5%.  But I also have discovered it is not for the majority of students at least as their primary math.  As such I'm not sure we will use it with our daughters.  Only time will tell. 
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We started chess this year, and he seems to really enjoy it and does well. We'll start some programming this spring, but I have no idea what to expect! Thanks for your feedback. Good stuff to ponder. I feel like RightStart filled the criteria above: more discovery-based and not easy-breezy. I wonder if we could do CLE and add some of the math puzzles and word problems from MM? I could cut them out without too much trouble. I just didn't want to have to reformat the whole curriculum to make it palatable! :)

  

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I'm also interested to hear what people have used, or would recommend, after RS E.  DD9 is well into E, and we are looking for the next step between RS and Pre-Algebra.  For some reason I really resist continuing with VT.  So,  :bigear:  I have the MM series, but I've never used it with my children because I dislike the layout. 

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I have had two finish RS E. This is what we have done while waiting for Algebra readiness:

5th:  MEP math (but my daughter is doing Math Mammoth 5 - MEP is written for classroom instruction, and I didn't want to spend that much time teaching math)

 

6th: Right Start Geometry and Life of Fred  (but my daughter will do Math Mammoth 6)

 

7th: tried AOPS and more Right Start Geometry, but now doing exclusively Video Text (and he loves it!!)  (My daughter will do VT as well  - if we finish early I will try AOPS as a review)

 

 

 

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I thought I'd throw in what we did.  When DS was 9.5, he finished up RS-E, about 1/2 way through 4thgrade.  So we transitioned to using a combination of things -- 

a) 2 days a week we used Hands On Equations.  he completed the verbal word problems and used the 3 levels of the ipad apps, over the course of about 6 months.

b) 2 days a week he worked in MEP.  I used both MEP yr 4 for a while and MEP yr 7 (it's a review year or something to that effect and doesn't require the same kind of teaching time that the lower grades of MEP require).  i just set a timer for him and he worked a bit in each of the three or four sections we chose for that time period.  

c) bounced around with logic books and logic puzzles, including things like Perplexors, Venn, safari logic (prufrock?), building thinking skills, mindbenders, etc

 

then, we transitioned to working in LoF.  I had on hand icecream through mineshaft, and then the two intermediate books, so i just had him plug away independently on those in place of the HOE and only did the MEP casually.  he started watching KHAN videos and alcumus videos casually because i had purchased AoPS prealg and he saw it on the shelf and was inquiring what it would all be about . . . . . . but those were just casual watching sessions like at lunch or whatever.

 

finally, he just sort of seemed like he needed some steam, and some change .... so when he was 10.5 we decided to plunge into AoPS, middle of 5th grade year.  we are taking it slowly, and i have a few more ideas in my backpocket if we need to go back and review basics and stuff along the way {lots of the MEP yr 7 still that he could complete, CLE7, and a couple saxon books that were given to us that i've never used, plus things like "keys to" series and REALworld algebra if need be sitting on my amazon wishlist}.....so far, we're not having trouble.  RS prepared him so well, along with HOE (highly recommend) for algebraic thinking ...... 

and then we'll do RSG with VT probably for 6th grade, about halfway through the year, i suspect.  

 

DD9 is a completely different type of kid, so her path through math as she nears the end of RSE won't look exactly like his did.  but i'll definitely include HOE, definitely do some review type stuff with either MEP yr7, CLE or the keys to series.  and i'm going to let her dive through the LOF books since we have them, when she's ready .... we always have a "logic" book going for fun puzzles with her anyway . . . but maybe i'll just go straight through to RSG with her since she'll be older when she finishes RSE.....

 

HTH

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We're working through RightStart E as well and I'm still trying to decide what we're doing as well.

 

I have used Horizons math as a supplement all along (my daughter needed more review than RightStart provides in their workbooks). So I think we're just going to continue on with Horizons for 5th & 6th before starting prealgebra.

 

We've also used bits of Math Mammoth. I liked the content but found the layout not right for us either.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Perfect timing to find this thread, ad I'm in a Math rut right now.

 

I too used Right Start through E (4th grade). Loved it! Wish it went through 12th grade. Have RS Geometry but based on suggestions here and on RS Yahoo board, decided to wait and supplement in his 5th grade year. We chose Singapore Math which was a pretty easy transition. We liked it a lot! Pretty easy for my son, but good, good review and reinforcement of concepts and many new concepts to explore as well. Did SM 4B/5A in 5th grade, 5B/6A in 6th grade. Also tried Key to & LOF - but neither of those stuck.

 

Middle 6th grade, finished 6A in about a month breezing through - and we tried AoPs Pre-Algebra...

 

My son hates it! We're 2 weeks into it, and taking it really slow, and my mathy kid has been brought to tears. I don't want that. It's his favorite subject. Why should he have to struggle and dread it?

 

After today's tears, that was enough for me. We'll finish the week out, maybe, and then find another alternative. The Discovery Approach did not work for him. 

 

I do have RS G so may just move into that for remainder of the year. I'm VERY keen to know more about VT - I've always shied away from it as it's video-based and that's not how most of our learning is done... but is it good?

 

 

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We took the plunge this year, straight into RS Geometry after doing RS E last year. My little man is working through Lesson 74 and will begin VT A after Lesson 81. Though I hesitated at first, it has been the right decision for us. Not only is it guiding him towards more independence, but I appreciate the *what* and *how* it's guiding and teaching him. I do think RS Geometry gets an unfairly bad rap, just out of shear fear of the unknown or perhaps being unsuccessfully tested by a *few* others here. However, instead of taking those others' words for it, I wanted us to try it for ourselves. After much research and comparison, it just seemed liked the next logical and right path for us. 

 

It may help you to know that I've had MM for a few years now, but never use it. I have AoPS on the shelf, just in case I decide to incorporate it at any time or simply use it as a comparative reference. In fact, I did just that not too long ago for further clarification on a concept. I found the overall explanations to be very similar, even though my little man says that he liked be able to look at it from the AoPS point of view as well—"That was a great idea!", but we both ultimately preferred the explanation that RS offered. Also, if you're concerned about additional work on fractions, decimals, percents, etc., I was told by a CSR at RightStart that these topics are included to some degree in the Geometric Approach. And that has indeed proven to be true. However, I was also told that much of this review and further training comes with the student's work in VideoText and in their continuing to play the Math Card Games.

 

As for VT, my initial concerns were that the seemly boring presentations—as compared to the AoPS PreAlgebra videos that my little man likes so well, though I don't think the full AoPS text would be his cup of tea right now—would dissuade him from truly giving VT a fair chance without incessant negativity about the dullness. But I do believe VideoText to be an excellent program, wherein he will know and understand the "whys" of Algebra as the authors claims, not just the processes, so we're going to give it a fair shot. We're both looking forward to it. I guess you could say that we're taking a leap of faith in regards to both RS G and VT. And I have yet to be disappointed.

 

In the end, I recommend choosing a program that teaches quality math—being sure they teach the "why" and not just the processes—in a way your son will continue to enjoy.

 

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Thanks for all the feedback. I am still kinda on the fence about where we go next. The countdown is on though - we start our new school year in June. This does make me think I should continue with RS in geometry two days a week and maybe supplement with CLE 6 until we hit Lesson 81. The  I could give Videotext a whirl since I already own it and see how it goes. So many decisions for next year. SOTW ends. FLL ends. RS ends (or does for many). This is my doesn't handle change well child and I am due in July. I know I'll need the solid month to get our rhythm before the baby arrives.

 

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I thought I'd throw in what we did.  When DS was 9.5, he finished up RS-E, about 1/2 way through 4thgrade.  So we transitioned to using a combination of things -- 

a) 2 days a week we used Hands On Equations.  he completed the verbal word problems and used the 3 levels of the ipad apps, over the course of about 6 months.

B) 2 days a week he worked in MEP.  I used both MEP yr 4 for a while and MEP yr 7 (it's a review year or something to that effect and doesn't require the same kind of teaching time that the lower grades of MEP require).  i just set a timer for him and he worked a bit in each of the three or four sections we chose for that time period.  

c) bounced around with logic books and logic puzzles, including things like Perplexors, Venn, safari logic (prufrock?), building thinking skills, mindbenders, etc

 

then, we transitioned to working in LoF.  I had on hand icecream through mineshaft, and then the two intermediate books, so i just had him plug away independently on those in place of the HOE and only did the MEP casually.  he started watching KHAN videos and alcumus videos casually because i had purchased AoPS prealg and he saw it on the shelf and was inquiring what it would all be about . . . . . . but those were just casual watching sessions like at lunch or whatever.

 

finally, he just sort of seemed like he needed some steam, and some change .... so when he was 10.5 we decided to plunge into AoPS, middle of 5th grade year.  we are taking it slowly, and i have a few more ideas in my backpocket if we need to go back and review basics and stuff along the way {lots of the MEP yr 7 still that he could complete, CLE7, and a couple saxon books that were given to us that i've never used, plus things like "keys to" series and REALworld algebra if need be sitting on my amazon wishlist}.....so far, we're not having trouble.  RS prepared him so well, along with HOE (highly recommend) for algebraic thinking ...... 

and then we'll do RSG with VT probably for 6th grade, about halfway through the year, i suspect.  

 

DD9 is a completely different type of kid, so her path through math as she nears the end of RSE won't look exactly like his did.  but i'll definitely include HOE, definitely do some review type stuff with either MEP yr7, CLE or the keys to series.  and i'm going to let her dive through the LOF books since we have them, when she's ready .... we always have a "logic" book going for fun puzzles with her anyway . . . but maybe i'll just go straight through to RSG with her since she'll be older when she finishes RSE.....

 

HTH

 

I completely agree with the bolded text! Simply put, and well said. The only thing I really ever added to our RS experience was the skip counting songs from our one year of participating in a CC community, back in G1 when we were doing RS C. And those truly paid off in helping with times tables later on. 

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I have nothing to add because we're in the same boat here, finishing RS E this year or the beginning of next. I just wanted to say how happy I am to read of others' success with RS. We've used it and loved it from the beginning.

.

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Thanks for all the feedback. I am still kinda on the fence about where we go next. The countdown is on though - we start our new school year in June. This does make me think I should continue with RS in geometry two days a week and maybe supplement with CLE 6 until we hit Lesson 81. The  I could give Videotext a whirl since I already own it and see how it goes. So many decisions for next year. SOTW ends. FLL ends. RS ends (or does for many). This is my doesn't handle change well child and I am due in July. I know I'll need the solid month to get our rhythm before the baby arrives.

Isn't that awful when you're on a roll, and everything ends!? We got there 2 years back. We opted to move to Singapore Math which was great for 5th grade. Now we're struggling to find the right pre-Algebra text.

 

For Grammar - we too ended FLL. But moved to ALL (they have an incomplete 15 weeks that was available by email, still may be, due to a permanent halt of the project. It was great! And a great transition. Then we unsuccessfully moved to Fix-It Grammar - and have now found a fabulous Grammar home with Analytical Grammar. Love it!

 

SOTW - we're so far behind, we're only finishing SOTW 4 this year. :)

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  • 4 weeks later...

I thought I'd post a question on the HS board to see if there are any moms who don't frequent the younger boards and have successfully completed RS with their children.  Here is the thread to discuss bridging RS to Algebra.  Hopefully there will be some wonderful additional wisdom from those who've gone before us.  :bigear:

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I should probably actually open my Math Card Games book.....

 

Here is what I have done so far:

 

From RS E went to MM5. There was lots of review and my ds was bored. However, I made him finish. Took him forever because he dawdled his time out of boredom.

 

He started MM6. Again, bored. I finally started seeing the light and realized that it's *okay* to skip around and not do every page because...well, because you're supposed to. So he is going through and just doing the chapter reviews. Any problems he doesn't know he goes back and just does that portion of the chapter.

 

He just started Jousting Armadillos (While still working on sections in MM6). Too soon for me to give an opinion.

 

He also does Zaccaro Challenge Math and Khan, oh, and also RS G.

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So here are my questions:

 

Do I spend a year in Singapore 6 A and B, or is that too much of a jump? Do I need to back up to 5A and 5B?

 

Do I work through Right Start (G) Geometry alongside whatever we do?

 

Do I do RightStart Geometry and Life of Fred Decimals, Fractions, and Percents? Would that be enough?

 

Do I just abandon the thought of AOPS and begin VideoText and RS G? I was able to buy VT-Module A for $5 locally last summer, so I already own it.

 

Do I go ahead and jump into AOPS and spend some time reviewing any "trouble" concepts as we identify them?

 

My son will be 10 in May when we finish up Right Start E. Please give me any feedback that you think would be helpful!

 

Thank you very much for your insight!

 

AoPS would not be a good fit.  Singapore is pretty challenging as well.

 

Have you considered Saxon (older or newer series Course 1, 2, 3)?

 

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I am in the same boat. Love RightStart. Will do RS E next year and then what the heck do I do?? This is stressing me out and I've spent hours researching math programs. Ds is in OT and I think RS G would kill both of us from what I hear about it. He just is not that precise between dyslexia and vision issues and handwriting/coordination issues.

 

So for the moms above (or anyone else who cares to share) who mentioned using Singapore Math for 5th/6th grades, what about the middle school level Singapore Math program? (Developing Mathematics  or whatever it's called--they seem to be stopping printing certain ones and starting others b/c of CC). Is there a reason we couldn't transition to SM and just stay with it through high school?? What am I missing here?

 

Also, has anyone tried jumping to Math in Focus from RS Level E? That seems to have the most potential for my ds, who needs manipulatives (though they seem to drop off in the courses for grades 6, 7, 8). But MIF is expensive and relatively new, both of which scare me.

 

So I'm basically no help here and just adding more questions to the pile. Anyone else see that NO ONE from the HS board answered the query over there. Crickets. Why do I find this frightening??

 

C

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I am in the same boat. Love RightStart. Will do RS E next year and then what the heck do I do?? ... Anyone else see that NO ONE from the HS board answered the query over there. Crickets. Why do I find this frightening??

 

C

 

It feels like many of us are in the same boat.  I gave my post one last bump to see if anyone will answer my questions.  Makes me wonder, too...  

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Okay, here's where I'm at in this decision making (take it for what it's worth!) - we're almost finished with RS level E and I have decided not to do Level G. We've been skipping drawing lessons in the last few books because they aren't our thing so I realized there was no point in pursuing the combo of G and Videotext.

 

My daughter is not ready for algebra so, at this point I know I need to get her ready (no matter whether that's 6th, 7th, or 8th grade). So, I really think that any good math program could work for this - a few years of shoring up those necessary middle grade math skills - thinks like fractions, decimals, percents and really making sure she knows her basic add/sub, mult/div facts down cold.

 

For us that means using Horizons but only because I've been using that as math drill since the beginning. Otherwise I'd use another program but my daughter is used to this one so we'll continue using it. I did consider Singapore but since we've never used it, it seems like a bit of a hassle to move to it for just a few years before continuing the high school sequence.

 

I don't regret our years with RS - my daughter has great understanding and is a whiz at mental math and I attribute that to RS.

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How is this for ironic? I am doing some practice for our IOWA test coming up in 2 weeks and focusing in on some topics RightStart doesn't address (ie. some measuring, estimating, etc.). I cut up all the Math Mammoth pages into small unintimidating chunks, and now my son has requested that we do Math Mammoth next year. I am laughing, but it does make choosing easier now. I had let him look at both CLE and Singapore, and he was okay with the CLE but really did not want to do SM. Now I just have to figure out when or if I want to introduce VideoText and whether or not I want to do Level G in some integrated fashion. I really want him to have a firm foundation and don't feel like I need to race to start Algebra in 6th grade if he isn't ready. I could probably use some help with how to schedule Math Mammoth, but I may start a new thread for that question. Just wanted to give an update. Thanks for everyone's input thus far. 

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How is this for ironic? I am doing some practice for our IOWA test coming up in 2 weeks and focusing in on some topics RightStart doesn't address (ie. some measuring, estimating, etc.). I cut up all the Math Mammoth pages into small unintimidating chunks, and now my son has requested that we do Math Mammoth next year. I am laughing, but it does make choosing easier now. I had let him look at both CLE and Singapore, and he was okay with the CLE but really did not want to do SM. Now I just have to figure out when or if I want to introduce VideoText and whether or not I want to do Level G in some integrated fashion. I really want him to have a firm foundation and don't feel like I need to race to start Algebra in 6th grade if he isn't ready. I could probably use some help with how to schedule Math Mammoth, but I may start a new thread for that question. Just wanted to give an update. Thanks for everyone's input thus far. 

 

Good idea! I'm glad that worked out nicely for you guys and gave some insight to next steps. It's always interesting to see how these things work themselves out.

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I'm not at all familiar with Right Start, but I am sharing what I'm planning. We are working through SIngapore 5A and 5B now. I used to merely supplement with MEP (pulling interesting pages here and there) but now I plan to use both programs concurrently (not yet clear to me what that will look like, day to day). After we finish 5B and Year 5 in MEP, I plan to start the Tabletclass pre-algebra class. Then we will start AOPS prealgebra. We'll see how to goes.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Okay, here's where I'm at in this decision making (take it for what it's worth!) - we're almost finished with RS level E and I have decided not to do Level G. We've been skipping drawing lessons in the last few books because they aren't our thing so I realized there was no point in pursuing the combo of G and Videotext.

 

My daughter is not ready for algebra so, at this point I know I need to get her ready (no matter whether that's 6th, 7th, or 8th grade). So, I really think that any good math program could work for this - a few years of shoring up those necessary middle grade math skills - thinks like fractions, decimals, percents and really making sure she knows her basic add/sub, mult/div facts down cold.

 

For us that means using Horizons but only because I've been using that as math drill since the beginning. Otherwise I'd use another program but my daughter is used to this one so we'll continue using it. I did consider Singapore but since we've never used it, it seems like a bit of a hassle to move to it for just a few years before continuing the high school sequence.

 

I don't regret our years with RS - my daughter has great understanding and is a whiz at mental math and I attribute that to RS.

 

Thought I'd give a quick update here.

 

RS Geometry with some CWPs thrown in the mix (as well as math card games and multivides on breaks/vacations) and VT Algebra have been a great combination for my little man thus far. That being said, I'm beginning to see that one of the main reasons why it is not the logical next for everyone, very few in fact, after RS E is because of the drawing.

 

My little man is by no means a gifted drawer(?), but he enjoys it. What's more, he enjoys the drawing required of him in the RightStart lessons, both in Geometry and in the previous RS Levels (which we never skipped). In fact, I've ordered him a manual, technical drawing series which will eventually lead into CAD that he so desperately wants to do. (On a side note, it never ceases to amaze me where and how the Lord guides us in our studies.)

 

ETA: Here's a great comparison of RS Geometry vs. VT Geometry in the AlgebraAtHome Yahoo group (for VT Algebra), written by a mom who's btdt.

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Perfect timing to find this thread, ad I'm in a Math rut right now.

 

I too used Right Start through E (4th grade). Loved it! Wish it went through 12th grade. Have RS Geometry but based on suggestions here and on RS Yahoo board, decided to wait and supplement in his 5th grade year. We chose Singapore Math which was a pretty easy transition. We liked it a lot! Pretty easy for my son, but good, good review and reinforcement of concepts and many new concepts to explore as well. Did SM 4B/5A in 5th grade, 5B/6A in 6th grade. Also tried Key to & LOF - but neither of those stuck.

 

Middle 6th grade, finished 6A in about a month breezing through - and we tried AoPs Pre-Algebra...

 

My son hates it! We're 2 weeks into it, and taking it really slow, and my mathy kid has been brought to tears. I don't want that. It's his favorite subject. Why should he have to struggle and dread it?

 

After today's tears, that was enough for me. We'll finish the week out, maybe, and then find another alternative. The Discovery Approach did not work for him. 

 

I do have RS G so may just move into that for remainder of the year. I'm VERY keen to know more about VT - I've always shied away from it as it's video-based and that's not how most of our learning is done... but is it good?

Update from me.

 

Background:

1st - 4th grade - RS A-E 

5th grade - moved to Singapore 4B/5A

1st half 6th grade - Singapore 5B/6A (finished in 2-3 months)

--- tried AoPs Pre-Algebra for 2 weeks = tears ---

2nd half 6th grade - moved to Dolciani Pre-Algebra - mixed with RS G

 

Blazing through Dolciani - much review after all the SM

Will finish Dolciani Pre-A in 4 months

RS G - able to do 2-3 lessons per day (2-3x per week) - have found this to be very easy & he works on it completely solo. How much he's getting out of it, who knows?

Will continue and finish in 7th grade

 

7th grade = Plan to begin Algebra I. Still wondering about coming back to AoPs Pre-A - it sure was challenging... challenging means learning, yes? And he did love the videos!

 

Which Algebra I to use - I don't know yet! 

I'm on the quest now...

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Thanks for sharing your experience!  I'd love to hear how it turns out for you.  I asked this in my other thread, but what made you decide to go Dolciani over VideoText?

 

quoting myself from this thread:

Dolciani looks attractive for my oldest.  She is easily reduced to tears because she expects to understand concepts right away, so I hesitate to use AoPS with her.   Although, I do have the kids using BA along side of RS.  

 

Right now my idea is to continue with RS-G along with shoring up the basic understanding of fractions (mult./div.), decimals, and precents with the RS card games, and then reviewing with the Key To series.  With my subsequent children, I hope Dr. Cotter will have Level F completed to take some of this guess work out of it all.  Once I feel like she has a good handle of all these concepts, I hope to move her into a Pre-Algebra.  I'm not confident that she'll like RS-G (all the drawing), but I looked over and love what is covered in G (wonder if this will change once we actually work through the lessons...hmm).  Since she likes to work as independently as possible, DD was happy to see that the lessons in G are written to the student.  If she has trouble with it right away, I might hold off on G for a little while.  Lots to think about...

 

Why would you say that this was true for the Key To series?  I might use it, but I'm not firm on this decision

 

Also tried Key to & LOF - but neither of those stuck. 

 

 

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A friend of mine uses CLE math. I was checking out their samples for CLE 6 today, and it looked pretty straight forward. Would it be helpful to have him spend a year bridging to a pre-algebra curriculum where we just focus on mastery of the content we've pretty much already learned? I plan on introducing some of the logic puzzles that SWB recommends in the WTM, so he'd still be challenged to think outside the box. CLE seems to have simple instructions written to the student and clean pages that wouldn't overwhelm him. Then we could spend some time introducing something like the Jousting Armadillos and then jump into AoPS? Are there criticisms of CLE out there? I haven't focused on more traditional math programs since we were Saxon 1 failures.

 

 

This thread caught my eye because my middle dd(11) is also in RSE (along with Singapore 5A), and I am thinking ahead a little bit. She loves the tiny bits of Pre-Algebra in RSE.

 

My oldest dd, who has ADHD and dyscalculia, is using CLE, and it's been a great fit for her because of the advantages you listed here. She's extremely visual, so we've found that it's best to let her try to read through explanations and teach herself. If she still doesn't understand something, I'll explain it to her. The pages are also much less overwhelming visually, and I'm thrilled that she can write her answers in the book. She'll be taking Algebra I next year, and I dread trying to teach her to write her answers on a separate piece of paper! 

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Thanks for sharing your experience!  I'd love to hear how it turns out for you.  I asked this in my other thread, but what made you decide to go Dolciani over VideoText?

 

 

Why would you say that this was true for the Key To series?  I might use it, but I'm not firm on this decision

 

 

I didn't feel I wanted to jump into a Video-based program. We'd been in it together from Day one, math very teacher intensive. And it felt somehow wrong to turn it over to a Video-based system. I am competent in math to continue onward through Algebra and then some, so I want to continue teaching it to my kids. I feel it's a bit of a cop-out on RS's part to send kids over to VideoText, when RS parents like math being teacher-intensive and a less independent subject.

 

As for Key to Series - it was just a workbook drill & kill. Again we liked Singapore for reinforcement as it felt more closely related to RS (a short lesson or overview, then an interesting, not too bogged down worksheet). We're also not one for multiple Math curriculum at a time - so when we were deeply ensconced in SM, it was unlikely for us to then veer into Key-to supplemental. LOF for us seemed superfluous, perhaps a fun read (as my son liked the story and wanted to read on) but definitely not enough to make the concepts stick nor enough practice to continue to make it stick.

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This thread caught my eye because my middle dd(11) is also in RSE (along with Singapore 5A), and I am thinking ahead a little bit. She loves the tiny bits of Pre-Algebra in RSE.

 

Mine LOVES the Pre-Algebra in RSE, too.  She finds it very intuitive and easy to understand, and I accredit it to the excellent groundwork RS lays.

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I just got an email from RS that they're soon to release their Fractions Kit. I don't know if this is meant to come after RS-E but maybe so, since I supplemented in 5th/6th grade with Singapore 4B-6A before moving to Pre-Algebra.

 

But great for my youngers coming up!

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I just got an email from RS that they're soon to release their Fractions Kit. I don't know if this is meant to come after RS-E but maybe so, since I supplemented in 5th/6th grade with Singapore 4B-6A before moving to Pre-Algebra.

 

But great for my youngers coming up!

 

They need to just make my life easier and write math books through say right before Calculus.

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I didn't feel I wanted to jump into a Video-based program. We'd been in it together from Day one, math very teacher intensive. And it felt somehow wrong to turn it over to a Video-based system. I am competent in math to continue onward through Algebra and then some, so I want to continue teaching it to my kids. I feel it's a bit of a cop-out on RS's part to send kids over to VideoText, when RS parents like math being teacher-intensive and a less independent subject.

 

As for Key to Series - it was just a workbook drill & kill. Again we liked Singapore for reinforcement as it felt more closely related to RS (a short lesson or overview, then an interesting, not too bogged down worksheet). We're also not one for multiple Math curriculum at a time - so when we were deeply ensconced in SM, it was unlikely for us to then veer into Key-to supplemental. LOF for us seemed superfluous, perhaps a fun read (as my son liked the story and wanted to read on) but definitely not enough to make the concepts stick nor enough practice to continue to make it stick.

 

I feel the same way.  It's a huge reason I resist VT.  Although, I'm sure I could watch the video with my DD and work with her on the concepts.

 

Good to know about the Key to Series.  That doesn't sound like what we want.  

 

My three oldest children are working on Beast Academy along side of RS.  Once they have the next level or two of BA completed, it should cover the fraction operations that RS never covers in the books, i.e. fraction multiplication/division.  I have noticed that the RS card game book has games that cover the basic understanding of fraction multiplication and division.  Not sure about multiplying decimals...  I'm looking forward to RS-F's completion. But in the meantime... Maybe after BA they'll be able to move right into a Pre-A...

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I just got an email from RS that they're soon to release their Fractions Kit. I don't know if this is meant to come after RS-E but maybe so, since I supplemented in 5th/6th grade with Singapore 4B-6A before moving to Pre-Algebra.

 

But great for my youngers coming up!

I just seen this. If this covers fractions from E to algebra I'm very interested.I need something that goes over the rest of fractions and focuses on the conceptual as it is going to be awhile for that part of BA to come out. From reading the cover it looks like it says it covers fractions in 43 days.

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Might be a matter of too little too late for this set of kids.... perhaps if you (like me) have youngers still in low levels of RS, this might come to fruition in time...

 

Again, for us, Singapore was a good fit. It wasn't our favorite like RS, but it was good enough. The HIG helped me teach the concepts, and the workbook was similar in style to RS's workbooks.

 

We took the assessment test to find out where to start in 5th grade (after Level E), and started earlier at SM 4B. So 5th grade, 4B & 5A. 6th grade, 5B & 6A (very easy review, took a month at most). He liked Singapore a lot. It's a good stop-gap I feel. Very helpful for fractions, decimals, percents, ratios, etc.

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I just got an email from RS that they're soon to release their Fractions Kit. I don't know if this is meant to come after RS-E but maybe so, since I supplemented in 5th/6th grade with Singapore 4B-6A before moving to Pre-Algebra.

 

But great for my youngers coming up!

 

Does it say something about the Fractions Kit anywhere on their website?  I can't seem to find information about it.

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