Jump to content

Menu

Need insight for Horizons Math vs Saxon for 5th grader


Guest Betherss
 Share

Recommended Posts

Guest Betherss

My daughter started out doing ok in math. Public school for K and then homeschooled for 1st (BJU but didn't realize they were a year behind normal), then private at our church school (which we found out later were weak in math and needed tutoring upon transferring out). We then moved so in 3rd she attended public which was not a fun experience since they were using common core (nightmare....tears...hours doing homework and not even knowing how to do the problems on her own at home) & so we jumped back into homeschooling for 4th grade. I labored over the right curriculum and landed on Singapore which also resulted in many tears on both our parts. Towards the end of this year I borrowed a friends Horizons 4 math and copied the lessons where we didn't cover (did 3A and 3B since they are ahead of American math grade levels). We've done 30 lessons and she's a different child. She even said, "Mom, I don't feel dumb doing this math." I was told by a friend not to do Horizons next year as it's weak and should then do Saxon since it's still the same spiral approach. That being said, it's still layer out a little different, review is different etc. She LIKES the Horizons but I don't want to be having her continue in a math that a.)may put her behind again B.) might be hard to teach without an effective teacher manual. C.) read that the author is different for older elementary grades. At the same time, I worry Saxon will be overwhelming with problems? Just need some insight on Horizons vs Saxon. She tested for either Horizons 5 or Saxon 5/6. Thank you!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Personally, any book that made my math struggler say they didn't feel dumb would be a winner. I wouldn't care what anyone said.

 

Horizons may not be the best for a parent that needs a lot of hand holding, but it is definitely not weak. It will not put a kid behind who is using it at grade level. That's the first time I've seen it called behind. Usually it's called ahead. *shrug* It covers a wide variety of concepts, including several that aren't often introduced until prealgebra. The variety especially kept my DS/10 engaged when he got to a part of that 5 book with all the big multiplication and division problems that feel so tedious. If it weren't for all the other stuff he got to do he may have revolted. :P

 

Saxon isn't technically spiral, it's incremental. I didn't find it to be much like Horizons at all. Saxon has a little mental math section, teaches the next lesson, has a few problems for it, and hands you a pile of random problems.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I recommend reading Cathy Duffy's review on Horizon math. It's free on her website and implies Horizon is actually a bit advanced, not behind in terms of grade level. She also says the layout of the TM is good, though it is not scripted, which some may find more difficult to maneuver. I'm in the latter camp but also understand the importance of a good fit for the student as well the teacher. Saxon is only scripted in the earlier grades, I believe and becomes independent in 54. CLE is really popular around here because it offers the spiral review similar to Saxon, hand holding for the teacher, while gently leading the students toward independence as you move up through the grades But but unlike Saxon, it only goes up through algebra 1, I believe. Like pp, if you dd loves Horizons and it gives her confidence, it's a winner.



HTHS.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We've been using Horizons since K.  That's the one curriculum we've never changed.  In fact, the reason we chose it was because it's more advanced than other programs.  I've never heard of Horizons being termed "weak" or below level at all. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We are fairly new to homeschooling--we're in our 2nd year--but from everything I've learned on this board and elsewhere, you don't want to fix what isn't broken.  If she likes Horizons, and you like Horizons, then by all means, use Horizons.

 

Also, I have not ever heard that Horizons is weak, at any level.  What I have heard from many different sources is that it tends to be more rigorous, or at least move faster, than most other programs.  With my 3 kids, I have used/am using Horizons 1 through Pre-Algebra.  Each grade level has provided a very solid, balanced math education.

 

I have heard people complain that the teacher's manual is not straightforward/detailed enough, but I have not personally had that problem.  I am not a math whiz, but I don't struggle with it either, so I guess someone who struggles with math might have a harder time teaching it.  I don't know.

 

Horizons 5 is written by the same authors as Horizons 4.  My Horizons 6 is packed away, so I don't know about the author for that one, but I know the format was the same (1 1/2 pages per lesson, for example), so I would be willing to bet the authors are the same.  Pre-Algebra (7th grade) has a different author.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Horizons works well for us. It is a semester ahead of Saxon and my daughter achieved a 98 percentile on her standardized testing. No need to worry there. If your dd likes it and her confidence is increasing, I believe it is the way to go. I'm perplexed as to why you thought it would put her behind. Was it because of your friend's comments?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My daughter started out doing ok in math. Public school for K and then homeschooled for 1st (BJU but didn't realize they were a year behind normal), then private at our church school (which we found out later were weak in math and needed tutoring upon transferring out). We then moved so in 3rd she attended public which was not a fun experience since they were using common core (nightmare....tears...hours doing homework and not even knowing how to do the problems on her own at home) & so we jumped back into homeschooling for 4th grade. I labored over the right curriculum and landed on Singapore which also resulted in many tears on both our parts. Towards the end of this year I borrowed a friends Horizons 4 math and copied the lessons where we didn't cover (did 3A and 3B since they are ahead of American math grade levels). We've done 30 lessons and she's a different child. She even said, "Mom, I don't feel dumb doing this math." I was told by a friend not to do Horizons next year as it's weak and should then do Saxon since it's still the same spiral approach. That being said, it's still layer out a little different, review is different etc. She LIKES the Horizons but I don't want to be having her continue in a math that a.)may put her behind again B.) might be hard to teach without an effective teacher manual. C.) read that the author is different for older elementary grades. At the same time, I worry Saxon will be overwhelming with problems? Just need some insight on Horizons vs Saxon. She tested for either Horizons 5 or Saxon 5/6. Thank you!!

I do not think that Saxon is in any way stronger than Horizon's. I had reasons I did not care for Horizon's, but this was definitely not one of them. My son actually liked Horizon's through 6, but things fell a part for us after that (at the preAlgebra level). Others here think it is great. If your daughter likes it, stay with it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Betherss

Thanks for your input everyone! I feel much better about choosing it as I too feel like I should stick with it if she liked her "trial" run with it. You have put my mind at ease. 😀 I just wanted to make sure I was using a strong program but one that fit as well. In the small area we used it, I didn't even open the teacher manual except for grading purposes. I felt like it was easy enough to teach with what each lesson introduced in the student manual. Again, thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This would be the first time I've heard horizons described as "weak". LOL!! "Thorough", "rigorous", and maybe "tedious", but not weak.

 

We used Horizons through 6 with my dd and then went straight into Saxon algebra 1/2 with zero issues. With DS we went from Horizon 6 to Saxon 7/6, and then we'll go to 1/2. He was so young I didn't want him going straight to 1/2.

 

My kids have rocked any standardized tests they've taken and are rock solid in math.

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.

Guest
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.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...