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Ugh! TT slowed us down for Saxon!


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So we jumped the Saxon ship after my dd finished 5/4...... I gave in to TT. She used TT 6 this year for 5th grade, which she liked & I did not so much. She took the placement test today for Saxon and she missed ALOT on the 6/5 test. Was hoping she had placed in 7/6 for sixth grade, since I have it sitting on the shelf. She struggled with 6/5 test....asked me lots of questions....she got upset...and felt like a failure. I reassured to her that it's only a placement test and don't sweat it too much!

So she got 12 right out of 20.... So she shouldn't move to 7/6.

 

So all in all, I feel like we wasted a year in math to TT.... I was planning 6/5 after 4/5 and wish now that I didn't leave Saxon. Please give me some encouragement that I haven't put my child too behind!

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You haven't put her too behind. Don't worry. Slow and steady, gradual success is important to her now. Do 6/5 at her pace and let her get her math feet again. We did that this year. She did 5/4 in 5th grade when most do it in 4th. She's now ready to move on faster and we're going through 6/5 faster. 

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Setbacks and struggle are okay! Embrace the struggle ... in fact, in math, and particularly for girls and math, we should try to remember to praise the struggle and the work, not getting hung up on levels. (I'm working on this myself.)

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I would give her the Saxon 6/5 tests, starting with test #1. As long as she scores at least 80%, keep giving the next test. When she scores less than 80%, back up 5 lessons and start 6/5 there.

I will have to try this. I bought the 6/5 set today at our convention book fair. I was thinking of getting through some of it before July when we break then pick it back up in August. The first part is always review anyway but I think I like your idea better.

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The point is to learn math, not finish a series as fast as possible. If you were doing math, she was learning and strengthening the areas that she WAS working on. Curriculum hopping isn't the fastest way up, but it can lay a wider foundation. I hopped out and back into Saxon with my son, too, and regretted it. But he WAS learning math. Lots of math. He just didn't move up as fast.

 

:grouphug:

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I agree Hunter. She was learning of course..... She did very well with the whole darn book but I was surprised that she didn't even place in Saxon 6/5 after using TT 6. Some things weren't even covered in TT that were on the 6/5 test.

 

6/5 is going to be good for her! We went out last night for "girls night" to clear the air. Her confidence is now boosted back up and she is ready to tackle whatever math is placed before her! We agreed instead of using any sort of DVD lessons with it, we will do math together daily! Though she isn't crazy about MM, i do have that on hand for a little change of pace.

 

Thanks for responding!

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:grouphug: Glad you have a plan! 

 

I jumped out & back into our "usual math" with eldest & although it was good for her at the time (because she realized how much she liked her normal math than what I switched her to), I ended up having to "fast track" her through the level we skipped. We are now four years later and it hasn't hurt her in the long run. It helped me learn my curriculum-hopping lesson (for math at least!  :leaving: )

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Math is a very wide subject. A publisher has to triage what will be covered. What one publisher chooses will never match what another publisher chooses. Hopping definitely slows down the upward progress.

 

The current versions of Saxon are wider than the old versions. Students are expected to juggle more and harder topics than ever. And Hake's "courses" series is harder and wider yet. I'm really hoping he does not take the Saxon homeschool books off the market, to push his new "courses" series.

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When we first brought DD home from public school, this is what we did in one of the Saxon books.  That was the most efficient way to get her to *exactly* where she needed to be within a book.

I would give her the Saxon 6/5 tests, starting with test #1.  As long as she scores at least 80%, keep giving the next test.  When she scores less than 80%, back up 5 lessons and start 6/5 there.

 

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The current versions of Saxon are wider than the old versions. Students are expected to juggle more and harder topics than ever. And Hake's "courses" series is harder and wider yet. I'm really hoping he does not take the Saxon homeschool books off the market, to push his new "courses" series.

 

I didn't know this...

 

I bought the 3rd edition - grade 2 thorough Algebra 1 several (5?) years ago.  I'll have to read up on it.  Thanks!

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My advisory teacher from the homeschooling charter school we use, told me that TT is known to be slightly below grade level, and good for students who are working below level. I had never heard that before, but perhaps it is true. Oh, but you used 6, so you should have been okay ...

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My advisory teacher from the homeschooling charter school we use, told me that TT is known to be slightly below grade level, and good for students who are working below level. I had never heard that before, but perhaps it is true. Oh, but you used 6, so you should have been okay ...

Yes, I thought she would have been okay, too.

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I know nothing about TT, but I always take with a grain of salt, talk about something not being rigorous enough. I either just use it earlier, or say YAY! my students are not brick making Egyptians slaves, and am pleased to spare them rigor.

 

Curriculum hopping is messy, no matter what you are hopping from or to.

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I wouldn't sweat it too much, like another poster said, take it slower to ease back in to Saxon. I don't think a detour will do as much damage as you think.

 

When we began schooling we curriculum hopped from Singapore to Envision to Right Start, back to Singapore then to Spectrum Math. In January of this year we started with Math Mammoth and in late March we moved to CLE. To put all of that switching in perspective, we only stuck with each anywhere from a month to three months. Something was always amiss. CLE has been amazing so far, we both love it. I started my daughter half a grade level back so she could get familiar with the format. I have every faith that she will catch up to "grade level" and potentially go beyond. The point is that she is learning, retaining, and applying what she has learned. Good luck.

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I know nothing about TT, but I always take with a grain of salt, talk about something not being rigorous enough. I either just use it earlier, or say YAY! my students are not brick making Egyptians slaves, and am pleased to spare them rigor.

 

Curriculum hopping is messy, no matter what you are hopping from or to.

 

Exactly this! Ds has working memory issues due to dyslexia. His processing speed is very slow. He is very accurate, very visual,and extremely bright. If put him through the rigor and blandness of Saxon, it would not only take up a good portion of the school day, it would deter from interest led subjects he enjoys and would make school a drudgery. With TT he is actually learning, math is getting done and he has enough time for LOF which he absolutely loves.

 

I personally like Saxon and would prefer to use it but I have to be respectful of his learning style. Rigorous math would be the death of us.

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This is why I only use TT as a supplement. I 'tested' it with my older kid as a 'math lab' 3 times a week for Algebra and even she stated it was not as difficult or complex as her other math program. She told me it wouldn't be a good choice for her only math. This is coming from a 13yr old. Also, I had to make her redo problems that she missed 2 times or completely. And have her do it on paper, for some reason writing the problem out, working it through with a pencil, solidified it for her more. It could be learning style but having the computer there and playing with the keys to 'guess' the right answer was something I found she did at times. These are not things that her other math program or one like Saxon allows. Just something to think about.

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To the poster above, TT is meant to be used with the workbook, so working the problems with pen and paper should be happening each lesson.

 

Not to pick on anyone but I wonder if TT gets more bad reviews than it deserves is due to user error?

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I'm sure for some but there was no user error here! I made them follow a pretty strict plan each day for each lesson.

 

Skim over lesson..... Jot down important math terms.....

Listen to lesson.....do lesson practice & review problems, working the problems out in spiral notebook first before typing into computer....If they get a problem wrong or even need a second attempt, watch solution, write down the solution in notebook, circle that problem for mom to see. They wrote their score at the top of the notebook page.

 

I'm not putting TT down. I wish I could feel confident that my dd is getting a solid math education from it, but I just don't feel that way. I think getting back into Saxon may help fill in any gaps she may have gotten. I will still probably fill in with MM for some word problems and mental math exercises.

We have our yearly testing in a couple weeks. I'm anxious to see how well she does with math. She will be taking the Stanford 10 online test this year.

 

FYI: this was no negativity towards TT..... I was just needing to vent really.

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I'm sure for some but there was no user error here! I made them follow a pretty strict plan each day for each lesson.

 

Skim over lesson..... Jot down important math terms.....

Listen to lesson.....do lesson practice & review problems, working the problems out in spiral notebook first before typing into computer....If they get a problem wrong or even need a second attempt, watch solution, write down the solution in notebook, circle that problem for mom to see. They wrote their score at the top of the notebook page.

 

I'm not putting TT down. I wish I could feel confident that my dd is getting a solid math education from it, but I just don't feel that way. I think getting back into Saxon may help fill in any gaps she may have gotten. I will still probably fill in with MM for some word problems and mental math exercises.

We have our yearly testing in a couple weeks. I'm anxious to see how well she does with math. She will be taking the Stanford 10 online test this year.

 

 

Murrayshire, did your daughter do a placement test for TT, as well?  Perhaps she would have done better doing TT 7  (especially if you're wanting to use TT and keep up with more rigorous curricula)?  Maybe if she followed TT all the way through she would get where she needs to be in the end and the course content per grade level is just different between the two curricula?   I personally wouldn't be alarmed as long as she knew the material (could apply it correctly in real life) and was doing well on standardized tests, but those are the two things that I go by for evaluating whether what we're using/doing is working.  We test every year even though we're  only required to do about every other year so that they're very comfortable by the time those tests really matter and as a helpful evaluation tool for me.

 

I know not every curriculum works for each family and I'm sorry you're feeling like your daughter lost ground. :grouphug:  It sounds like you caught it early and have a great strategy for getting her where you want her to be!   :hurray:

 

As an aside an I'm not in anyway directing this toward the OP,  It's just something that's been on my mind and somewhat related.   I always find it strange when I hear of high students doing terrible on the SAT or similar test and the parent(s) being shocked.  I feel like there must have been a disconnect somewhere along the homeschool journey.  I know I have one that would bomb the SAT if I didn't have him regularly testing throughout his schooling and working constantly with him with reading directions thoroughly (not just for test taking thing though, a very important life skill) and other test taking strategies (some of which also apply to life/school work in general).

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Murrayshire, did your daughter do a placement test for TT, as well? Perhaps she would have done better doing TT 7 (especially if you're wanting to use TT and keep up with more rigorous curricula)? .

 

At the end of 4th grade she took the placement for TT and placed in 6.

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  • 5 weeks later...

Just bumping this up.. I am feeling frustrated because my DD (12, 6th grade) just finished TT Prealgebra, and when I compare her knowledge of concepts and her test scores in other programs, she is far behind where I think she ought to be. TT was good for giving her some confidence and freeing me up from the total burden of teaching, but I don't think it was worth it, given that she is now going to have to repeat prealgebra in another program. I downloaded the placement tests from Saxon, AOPS, and one other curriculum, and she wouldn't even be close to placing into algebra at this point, even having done pretty well on TT Prealgebra. Just an FYI for other parents considering using TT. 

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Upenmama, maybe you could call or write TT and see what they say?  I wouldn't judge a curriculum that I knew was a level or so behind most others by how well my child could test at the same level into other curricula (that many believe to be more rigorous not only to TT but many others, as well).  Have you checked the scope and sequences of the difference curricula compared to TT to see if even the same things are covered in their prealgebra courses?   We're using TT, so I'm genuinely curious.  I'll be looking thoroughly into this myself soon before we take the TT prealgebra plunge!

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So we got my dd's Stanford 10 test scores back. She scored in the low 40th percentile rank after using TT Math 6 for 5th grade. Her grade equivalent is 5.4 (5th year, 4th month). She has always been bright in math and scored in the 80th percentile last year after using Saxon.

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My advisory teacher from the homeschooling charter school we use, told me that TT is known to be slightly below grade level, and good for students who are working below level. I had never heard that before, but perhaps it is true. Oh, but you used 6, so you should have been okay ...

 

I, too, began homeschooling through a charter.  Our teaching advisor steered us away from TT for the same reason.

 

A friend allowed her DD to use TT for, I believe, two years.  A school math placement test prior to a brief BM schooling experience sent them to Saxon upon the child's return home.

 

I know that TT does work for some families, but I would approach it with caution.  I think that it would be important to know the student's long-term math goals and be sure that TT would meet those goals.

 

Edit:  The friend's child mentioned above was at the 7th grade/pre-algebra stage at the time of the placement test.

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Guest brettswife

So, if I'm reading this correctly...the only "good" option for math is Saxon? Especially is your child excels at math?

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So, if I'm reading this correctly...the only "good" option for math is Saxon? Especially is your child excels at math?

No, I do not think that you are reading this correctly. If your child excels at math, there are a number of good options that are neither Saxon nor TT.

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Guest brettswife

Nope, plenty of good and rigorous options. For us RightStart is the best fit for elementary and Saxon for math up to college courses. But we have particular reasons for feeling that way, and it isn't because other curricula couldn't get the job done.

 

It depends on the family and student needs, there's no one size fits all even as we all have favorites and preferences.

Thank you! After reading this and a few other math-related discussions I was beginning to feel like Saxon must be our only viable option for math. I guess I need to do some more searching.

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So, if I'm reading this correctly...the only "good" option for math is Saxon? Especially is your child excels at math?

This made me smile. Saxon is often painted as inferior here. There are many good options for math. If you have time, search old posts. You find many debating various publishers and methods.

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I think the main idea of this thread is The Grass Is Not Always Greener in another math program. Murrayshire regrets switching math programs because she feels like they didn't make any progress. (Indeed, the evidence seems to back that up.)

 

If you are using a program that is working, don't switch just because you've been hearing about another math program that also gets your kids putting their dirty laundry into the properly sorted laundry basket and remembering to shut the outside door when you have the air conditioning on!  :laugh: (You know what I mean.)

 

A math program that works great for some of my kids might be a disaster in your family & vice versa.

 

I wanted to thank the OP for sharing her experience and continue to give  :grouphug: .

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I think the main idea of this thread is The Grass Is Not Always Greener in another math program. Murrayshire regrets switching math programs because she feels like they didn't make any progress. (Indeed, the evidence seems to back that up.)

 

If you are using a program that is working, don't switch just because you've been hearing about another math program that also gets your kids putting their dirty laundry into the properly sorted laundry basket and remembering to shut the outside door when you have the air conditioning on! :laugh: (You know what I mean.)

 

A math program that works great for some of my kids might be a disaster in your family & vice versa.

 

I wanted to thank the OP for sharing her experience and continue to give :grouphug: .

Thank you Root Ann! Well put!

😉

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I think the main idea of this thread is The Grass Is Not Always Greener in another math program. Murrayshire regrets switching math programs because she feels like they didn't make any progress. (Indeed, the evidence seems to back that up.)

 

If you are using a program that is working, don't switch just because you've been hearing about another math program that also gets your kids putting their dirty laundry into the properly sorted laundry basket and remembering to shut the outside door when you have the air conditioning on!  :laugh: (You know what I mean.)

 

A math program that works great for some of my kids might be a disaster in your family & vice versa.

 

I wanted to thank the OP for sharing her experience and continue to give  :grouphug: .

So true! TT was a flop for one of my kids and fits the other like a glove.  Not every program is going to work for every kid.  Doesn't make it "bad."  It just makes it a poor fit.

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We love TT here.  Both of my boys used Math Mammoth until grade 6 and then switched to TT.  For my middle ds math has always been his weakest subject and one that we had a lot of tears and arguments about.  He loves TT and is doing very well with it and math is now his favorite subject.  Previously he's tested around 60% in math on standardized tests but now he's up to 90%.  With older ds he's always done well in math and had high test scores and continues to have high test scores.  

 

I'm really surprised at the negative TT experiences.  I know at least two other homeschool families irl that use TT and they have all been happy with it as well.  I guess there really is not one program that works for every child!

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We love TT here.  Both of my boys used Math Mammoth until grade 6 and then switched to TT.  For my middle ds math has always been his weakest subject and one that we had a lot of tears and arguments about.  He loves TT and is doing very well with it and math is now his favorite subject.  Previously he's tested around 60% in math on standardized tests but now he's up to 90%.  With older ds he's always done well in math and had high test scores and continues to have high test scores.  

 

I'm really surprised at the negative TT experiences.  I know at least two other homeschool families irl that use TT and they have all been happy with it as well.  I guess there really is not one program that works for every child!

 

:iagree:

 

We have excellent test scores and real world crossover/application here.  *shrug*  

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If you wanted to prepare for saxon, use saxon. Don't blame TT for your curriculum hopping.

Well, apparently you haven't read this entire thread! I haven't blamed TT for my child's unsuccessfulness. We used Saxon before TT but dd was needing something different b/c she was getting tired of Saxon, so we jumped into TT feeling refreshed. We were never preparing for Saxon. If you read everything above you would know.

 

 

Root Ann's post #37 hits the bullseye! I never expected this thread to keep going like the energizer bunny! So much for days of venting! Lots of thanks to those who have given a helping hand! ☺ï¸

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Just to say........ We are on track now and feel good about our math decision for our upcoming year. I really did not intend for this thread to be a battle between Saxon and TT. I like both programs but I feel Saxon is the stronger one out of the two for us.

So there you have it. Hopefully others will gain some sort of insight from this thread, but I do wish it will fizzle out soon.

 

Thanks!

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That's kind of my point - so many curriculum "weaknesses" I see on these boards and in real life are due to people not completing a program and then having holes. I see so many less complaints from an entire program completed by a student precisely because I think the bulk of curricula aren't the kind that handle piecemealing very well. This is so apparent in math because it build on itself, so missing part of a course of study becomes deleterious in an increasingly apparent manner as the student advances.

 

I think one of the biggest issues (and this is not aimed at Murrayshire) is people where the biggest problem is that the math isn't getting done on schedule, or the child is just unwilling to work/think, or the parent doesn't understand it at all, or there is an undiagnosed/untreated learning disability, and the parent just keeps changing curriculum in the hopes that there's a magic curriculum out there that's going to make it better.

 

I don't think changing curriculum once is a really big deal. What makes it a big deal is changing over and over again ... especially when you don't stop to fill in holes when you change.

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Changing once is only a big deal if you then publicly trash the previous program.

If no one was willing to comment on their curriculum failures, we'd all have to spend a lot more money and time experimenting. Trash talk is particularly helpful when the unsatisfied customer explains why they didn't like the program, why it didn't work for their kid, why it was hard to teach, what specific gaps it caused for their kids, etc. Then I can evaluate if those reasons apply to my situation or if their bug might be my feature.

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  • 2 weeks later...

This made me smile. Saxon is often painted as inferior here. There are many good options for math. If you have time, search old posts. You find many debating various publishers and methods.

 

I know - LOL!!! When I was discerning Saxon, most of the voices that were the loudest were to stay away. I'm thrilled I didn't listen to them.  :laugh:

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