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Do I move her into Alg 1? xpost

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a math WWYD... 


DD13 is 15 lessons away from finishing Saxon Alg 1/2.   I have been keeping track on a spreadsheet of which lessons/concepts DD is missing the most of in Pre-A.  There are a handful of concepts/lessons that she continues to miss at least 60-70% of the time.  Since she will complete this book well before the end of this school year, I plan to use the rest of the school days in heavy review of the weaker areas before moving into Alg 1...I think. Then, moving on to Alg 1 at the beginning of 8th gr, at whatever point she is at then...I think.   But what do you suggest?  Would you skip the review, review until mostly solid or review until there's a bit more mastery on the weaker areas before moving into Alg 1?  Will Alg 1 be that much harder and will the gaps widen if I just move her on?  Or will the gaps close if I just go ahead w/ Alg 1? 


I'm not as mathematically inclined so I'm not sure how to handle this one.  .  A good friend of mine never holds her DD back to review/make solid before moving on, explaining that stopping to do such review instead of continuing to advance actually interrupts some sort of math learning flow. She is also using Saxon.  She feels like her DD will eventually catch on to her weaker concepts because she will continue to see the concept over and over.  I followed that advice to see if it was right for DD and even though it has ironed out some missed concepts, there are a few shaky ones still remaining.  So, I just don't know what to do next. 


My honest opinion is that DD has passed Pre-A as a whole.  And for every lesson she has to re-do any she's gotten wrong.  The final grade comes after the one re-do and I consider the re-do additional practice.  After every re-do the final grade is usually a high B or low A.   I don't want to make Alg 1 harder on her than it has to be so what do you suggest?   


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My oldest was in a similar situation at the beginning of this school year. She had finished Singapore Discovering Math 7 & Horizons pre-algebra but I didn't feel like she had totally mastered pre-algebra so I didn't want to start Singapore DM 8 (which is mostly algebra 1). I wound up giving her the MEP years 7-9 diagnostic tests and having her work through the units where she showed conceptual difficulty (as opposed to making calculation errors). She started Singapore 8 this semester and I'm glad I took the extra time between the 7th and 8th grade books to have her do MEP.

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Saxon isn't considered a "mastery" program, so I do understand what your friend is suggesting... it will spiral back around and your child might be more ready to understand next time.  But... I wouldn't do it that way.  What's the point of homeschooling if you're not meeting your daughter at exactly where she is? If she doesn't understand how to work with exponents or graph equations, why not stop and try to work on those specific areas she struggles with?
Start the next book when you finish the current one and have fixed up any areas that need fixing.  It probably won't take more than a few weeks and you'll feel better knowing she's 100% ready to move on.

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I'd suggest that you get a copy of Margaret Lial's PreAlgebra (or an equivalent book) and have your daughter work through the chapter reviews. She can then stop and review if she finds an area that is problematic.  If she truly does know the subject well, she can zip through this process in a week or so.  If not, the review will be beneficial to her.


For example, Margaret Lial's Prealgebra (3rd Edition) has used copies available for under $5.00 including shipping.


I'm a big fan of Margaret Lial's books but don't care overmuch for the Saxon approach.  My husband tutors many students who have used Saxon books and finds that they often have gaps.


ETA:  This appears to be the matching Solutions Manual.  There are also inexpensive used copies available for under $5.00. Student Solutions Manual for Prealgebra




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