k3bzr18 Posted July 7, 2015 Share Posted July 7, 2015 Hi! I am looking to start my daughter in MUS Alpha. With her personality and learning style, I think this will work best. I know MUS takes a different approach than most math curriculum so if switching from MUS, there may be holes. Has anyone used MUS beyond the elementary years? I have read where some have and their children's math proficiency has been awesome. Any personal experiences to share? Thank you! Lynn Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

sweetpea3829 Posted July 7, 2015 Share Posted July 7, 2015 I have not personally used MUS through high school (just finishing Beta with dyscalculic DD) but have heard a few anecdotal accounts of students performing very well mathematically after completing all MUS levels. I will say upfront...MUS is not my favorite math curricula. Honestly, I do not see why it gets so much love. It is (so far) very basic. There is little math exploration. Yes, it covers what you need to cover. But not much else. And the problem solving is really lacking. I use it for my daughter because its incredibly incremental approach in Alpha and Beta were what she needed. She doesn't need math exploration...she needs basics. I also use it as an INTRODUCTION with my youngest two. Because MUS is good at building the foundation, it makes a great introduction. This fall, both boys will transition to Singapore. I will likely have them complete MUS levels as needed to cover topics they will eventually see in Singapore. If you do use MUS as your primary curriculum, the one thing I would suggest definitely adding is some kind of problem solving supplement. Process Skills in Problem Solving is great...along with Singapore's Challenging Word Problems. I use them a year or two behind grade level, depending on which of my kiddos we're talking about. 3 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

kloumc Posted July 7, 2015 Share Posted July 7, 2015 I have used Math-U-See for all of my kids through high school and found it to be very successful. Child #1 completed MUS's Pre-Calculus and scored 690 on the math portion of the SAT. She didn't have to take any math placement test for her university because of her SAT score. Child #2 completed MUS's Calculus course and slid right into Calculus I at her technology university and got an "A." She said MUS prepared her well for College level Calculus I. Child #2 also scored 690 on the Math portion of the SAT and didn't have to take the placement test. There is a lot to be said for not jumping around from program to program. That's where you'll find holes. :) 4 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Mystie Posted July 7, 2015 Share Posted July 7, 2015 My 11 year old is in pre-algebra; he got about 1/3 through Pre-Algebra in 6th grade. I plan to stick with it through 9th grade - I think we should get through Geometry at least by then. After that my preference will be outsourcing to the community college, but he'll need to complete Algebra 2 before he'd be ready for the test that allows high schoolers in. :) At his current rate through the books with a mastery approach, he'll probably be there. He's been doing at least 1 1/2 books a year for 2 years now, after taking 2 1/2 to get through Alpha & 1 1/2 to get through Beta. I'm glad I stuck with it and made him really practice those facts and not move on until he had mastered the foundations because when he was 10 it's like it all clicked and now he's trucking on through, and knowing his facts down cold makes learning the concepts later simple. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Lori D. Posted July 7, 2015 Share Posted July 7, 2015 Below are some past threads on with lots of positive and negative experiences of MUS in high school -- pretty much as you would find with every math program. :) Yes, MUS is lighter than the typical high school math program. But it is also one of the most visual methods of explaining the very abstract (non-visual, non-concrete) topics of Algebra, so it can be the very thing that works when other programs don't for explaining the higher maths to a very visual-spatial learner or a special needs student. It can also click extremely well for average or advanced students as a first exposure to higher math concepts. From the actual high school MUS experiences in those threads, you'll find the full range of thoughts and experiences about MUS above the elementary grades. Our experience: We found MUS in 5th grade and it was the first math program that clicked for our math struggler (mild LDs); we used Delta through Pre-Algebra in grades 5-8, and supplemented MUS with Singapore and Keys Toâ€¦ math workbooks up through Pre-Algebra. We went on to use MUS in high school; for Algebra 1 we also used Jacobs Algebra. Other families switch away from MUS entirely after the Zeta or the Pre-Algebra level as it no longer challenges their students. One mom (can't remember now who), has shared that her STEM-based students so grasped math by doing MUS through high school that they end up tutoring fellow college students through college levels of math. 8FillTheHeart has her advanced students use the MUS high school levels as a first exposure and then her students do the high school maths with rigorous programs (so, MUS as a useful supplement or first exposure). In contrast, mom31257, who is a math teacher and tutors high school math students, has seen MUS fail to prepare students for college math, so she uses Saxon with students she tutors. So as you can see -- wide range of experiences. Whatever math program families settle on, I always highly encourage the use of a second program from a different perspective as a supplement to the spine math, which encourages making math connections, math "thinking", and develops problem-solving skills, from seeing there is more than one way to view the math concepts. Use supplements to the spine math for as long as you can -- into the high school years, if possible, but up to Pre-Algebra is especially helpful and effective in developing math thinking and math understanding. Also, if using a second math program in the elementary grades, you reduce the potential of "gaps", which makes it easier to switch math programs (which have different scope and sequences), if needed. Original Poster: With such a young student (using MUS Alpha), you might look at Miquon as a supplement for grades 1-3. Or, there are a number of small booklets with go-along manipulatives (pattern blocks, geoboards, multi-link cubes, etc.) that are very helpful supplements in the early elementary grades. Singapore also makes a good compliment math program (grades 1-6) -- Singapore introduces problem-solving in the 3A/3B level that is especially good. Right Start has some great games for the grades 1-3 years, and uses an abacus, which is another very visual way of seeing math connections. And Life of Fred places math concepts into real-life use very well; that might be especially good as a supplement in the later elementary and middle school grades. Once you're into the Gamma, Delta or Epsilon levels, check out Beast Academy (gr. 3-4) from Art of Problem Solving for something to really help develop word-problem/problem-solving skills. BEST of luck in your math journey, whatever you use! :) Warmest regards, Lori D. "Is MUS really not good enough?" MUS question (results if you used it through high school) Anyone use MUS all the way thru? MUS in high school MUS for a STEM student? Happily ever after stories sought (struggling math student, using Singapore and MUS) 1 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

sweetpea3829 Posted July 7, 2015 Share Posted July 7, 2015 Whatever math program families settle on, I always highly encourage the use of a second program from a different perspective as a supplement to the spine math, which encourages making math connections, math "thinking", and develops problem-solving skills, from seeing there is more than one way to view the math concepts. Use supplements to the spine math for as long as you can -- into the high school years, if possible, but up to Pre-Algebra is especially helpful and effective in developing math thinking and math understanding. DING DING DING!!!!! Excellent post, Lori...on all accounts. :-) Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

KeriJ Posted July 8, 2015 Share Posted July 8, 2015 I haven't read all of the responses yet, but Cathy Duffy describes it as being deceptively light for Pre-Algebra and Algebra 1. But then states that it moves quicker in Geometry and Algebra II so that by the end, it is caught up with other programs. 2 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

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