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We have worked with Mr D for over three years. Our girls take the live online classes along with the year-long curriculum. DD13 started off with pre-algebra, took summer Algebra, and then followed it with geometry last year and Algebra II this year.  DD11 is currently taking pre-algebra.  We adore Mr D and our girls thrive under his positive and encouraging way of teaching. Mr D truly wants each student to master every new procedure and offers extra help sessions for times when we struggle. He is also extremely responsive if we have any questions. We can't say enough about Mr D.  DD13 is already upset knowing that she only has one more year with Mr D!   In addition to our time with him online, Mr D administers our ITBS test each year.  So it's always a treat to see him in May.  Feel free to email him with questions.  I know he'd be delighted to address any concerns. 

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We have worked with Mr D for over three years. Our girls take the live online classes along with the year-long curriculum. DD13 started off with pre-algebra, took summer Algebra, and then followed it with geometry last year and Algebra II this year. DD11 is currently taking pre-algebra. We adore Mr D and our girls thrive under his positive and encouraging way of teaching. Mr D truly wants each student to master every new procedure and offers extra help sessions for times when we struggle. He is also extremely responsive if we have any questions. We can't say enough about Mr D. DD13 is already upset knowing that she only has one more year with Mr D! In addition to our time with him online, Mr D administers our ITBS test each year. So it's always a treat to see him in May. Feel free to email him with questions. I know he'd be delighted to address any concerns.

thx! Is he mastery or spiral approach? Does he use is own materials or someone else's?

 

 

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Here's info from Mr. D.....it's definitely worth giving his demo class a try. And feel free to contact him. www.mrdmath.com

 

"The course is a mastery based approach.  There are spiral reviews though throughout the course twice per chapter starting at chapter 2.  When students reach high school level math, the reviews are also built into the new content as students are applying previously learned concepts in the new content.  During a lesson, the instruction both during the live class session or the pre-recorded video for each section reviews anything a student needs for that new lesson.

 
Parents and students can also demo the curriculum to get a feel for if it is a good fit for their learning styles.
 
Here is how to demo a class
Click on “student loginâ€
Username: Demo
Password: MrDMath
 
Then click on the course you want to see on the left hand side of the screen.

There are short videos that will show how to use the course once you are in a course area."

 
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This is an interesting looking program. I wonder where it falls on the spectrum of super rigorous versus lighter and easier math in terms of depth and breadth? Is it more geared toward the struggling student or math whiz, etc...? While all programs aim to address a wider audience, the reality is they typically fall somewhere along a spectrum which may either be too easy or too hard for certain students. It would be great if someone had a unit of comparison say to another online math vendor such as Derek Owens, WHA, WTMA, Jann in TX, et al.

 

Are there any formal textbooks or is the material all developed in-house by Mr. D? If so, were they based upon an original textbook, perhaps? Sometimes they start out that way like DO courses.

 

I couldn't find any other reviews on it here. Though with a title like 'Mr. D' its sometimes hard to find in searches.

Edited by dereksurfs
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I emailed Dr.D yesterday regarding the texts his classes use, the rigor, the number of videos, etc. He responded quickly:

 

"Hi Georgia

 
I have a demo to the course which is the best way to check it out.
I taught from a Forrester text book back in the 90’s.  It is awesome. 
I wrote the curriculum myself.  I have been in education for 30 years.
I ran a tutoring company while teaching in the public schools back in the early 90’s (teachers needing a 2nd income go figure) and learned from just about every textbook and student learning style you can imagine in those days.  That experience turned out to be the best learning to be a teacher anyone could ever have.
 
When I was writing all of the courses, I used these courses as a guide.
Pearson
Glencoe
McGraw Hill
And even a little Forester while courses are not quite as rigorous as the Forester text though.
 
I do teach formal proofs in Geometry but I don’t make students memorize all the theorems. It tends to be something they memorize, forget and are happy to forget.  Instead, students learn to create a proof, following the flow of a logical set of steps. Students have found this to be a very helpful way of learning.
 
Each course has 12 chapters and 6-8 sections per chapter.  There is a pre-recorded video for each section.  Each section has approximately 20 practice problems with the step by step detailed solutions provided as you will see in the demo.  There is a short 5 question online quiz in each section and 2 spiral review quizzes per chapter.  The chapter tests and semester exams are online assessments as well.  They are great for standardized test prep as students enter their upper level high school years.
 
The notes students should be taking while watching the videos are built into the course work…you will see that in the demo.  The videos stream online so students can watch, pause, rewind as needed while doing the course work section.  It is very effective for students and creates self-directed learning skills.
 
Here is how to demo a class
Click on “student loginâ€
Username: Demo
Password: MrDMath
 
Then click on the course you want to see on the left hand side of the screen.
There are short videos that will show how to use the course once you are in a course area.
 
Let me any questions you have along the way too!"
 
Dr. D provides a variety of class options:
Option 1: Online Curriculum + Online Class Sessions ($197 one-time fee plus $29 a month for 10 months)
Option 2: Online Curriculum + In-Person Classes
Option 3: Online Curriculum Only - self paced ($197 one-time fee) - but which also includes access to the Mr. D Math teaching staff
 
Is there anyone who can give us the pros and cons of the Dr. D curricula compared to what other curricula they have used?
 
 
 

 

 

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I emailed Dr.D yesterday regarding the texts his classes use, the rigor, the number of videos, etc. He responded quickly:

 

"Hi Georgia

 
I have a demo to the course which is the best way to check it out.
I taught from a Forrester text book back in the 90’s.  It is awesome. 
I wrote the curriculum myself.  I have been in education for 30 years.
I ran a tutoring company while teaching in the public schools back in the early 90’s (teachers needing a 2nd income go figure) and learned from just about every textbook and student learning style you can imagine in those days.  That experience turned out to be the best learning to be a teacher anyone could ever have.
 
When I was writing all of the courses, I used these courses as a guide.
Pearson
Glencoe
McGraw Hill
And even a little Forester while courses are not quite as rigorous as the Forester text though.
 
I do teach formal proofs in Geometry but I don’t make students memorize all the theorems. It tends to be something they memorize, forget and are happy to forget.  Instead, students learn to create a proof, following the flow of a logical set of steps. Students have found this to be a very helpful way of learning.
 
Each course has 12 chapters and 6-8 sections per chapter.  There is a pre-recorded video for each section.  Each section has approximately 20 practice problems with the step by step detailed solutions provided as you will see in the demo.  There is a short 5 question online quiz in each section and 2 spiral review quizzes per chapter.  The chapter tests and semester exams are online assessments as well.  They are great for standardized test prep as students enter their upper level high school years.
 
The notes students should be taking while watching the videos are built into the course work…you will see that in the demo.  The videos stream online so students can watch, pause, rewind as needed while doing the course work section.  It is very effective for students and creates self-directed learning skills.
...

 

Thanks for sharing his response, GeorgiaH. This is very thorough and helpful. I appreciate hearing from him his process of developing the curriculum.  :001_smile:

Edited by dereksurfs
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I can't really compare other curriculum, as we've only used Mr D.  (Prior to his curriculum, we used Saxon.) 

 

Our girls are learning, progressing and truly enjoy the process with Mr. D.  Both girls do very well on standardized testing (ITBS), but I have no idea how they'll do on other high school/college entry tests.....time will tell!  Once our oldest completes pre-calculus next year, she'll dual enroll and I suppose, that's when we'll have a definite evaluation of his teaching style.  For now, we're staying with Mr D.  

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I can't really compare other curriculum, as we've only used Mr D.  (Prior to his curriculum, we used Saxon.) 

 

Our girls are learning, progressing and truly enjoy the process with Mr. D.  Both girls do very well on standardized testing (ITBS), but I have no idea how they'll do on other high school/college entry tests.....time will tell!  Once our oldest completes pre-calculus next year, she'll dual enroll and I suppose, that's when we'll have a definite evaluation of his teaching style.  For now, we're staying with Mr D.  

 

LAR, do you know others on this forum or other homeschool forums who's kids attend Mr. D's classes? I couldn't find any more reviews here which may in part be due to the short name. The search engine doesn't like it. I would like to learn more as his courses sound good on the surface at least for one of our struggling math students. But its hard to make an informed decision without more to go on. I am not at all discounting your experience. In fact I really appreciate you sharing it. You've inspired me to investigate it more. Its just that I think every math program has its champions (e.g. Saxon, et al). So it really helps to hear from a few more families to get a better sense of what it is like for a variety of students.

 

One of the main things we need to work on is conceptual development as she currently relies too heavily on following procedures (e.g. cookbook math). Can you describe how he addresses conceptual development with your kids? Do you feel they are learning more than following steps given, a deeper learning of principles and concepts as well? Just curious since this is one of my goals for her.

 

Thanks,

Edited by dereksurfs
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Mr D is more about the concept. He wants his students to understand what type of problem they're given, where they need to go to solve it and how to get there.   His lessons are basic, simple, to the point.  He always tells students to take note, "you WILL see this problem on the SAT."  He wants the student to find the shortcut and not have to write it all out.  He's actually a bit old school, and his approached has worked well with our girls. 

 

I understand your concern though.  I need reviews before I buy or do anything.  He's been working locally at co-ops for years, helping schools in Hawaii and Spain, but strangely there aren't many reviews out there.  Honestly, I don't know why.  This concerned me early on, because our oldest is definitely college bound and I was worried the curriculum wasn't enough for her.  However, she's been growing, learning, gaining confidence and will start Mr D's pre-calc class in August.  We'll dual enroll for the following year, which will be her sophomore year and I see no problem with her continued success in math.  

 

It might be worth you giving his summer math readiness courses a try.  These classes meet once a week and run for 6 weeks; cost is $97.

 

 

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Thanks, Lar for the explanation. I decided to write Mr. D and ask him this question as well. I also mentioned that we are discussing this the forum. Here is his response regarding Conceptual Development.

 

"Hi Derek,

 
For me, I consider the course to be like a language course.  In the course, students learn the language of math like it was it’s own language, as I believe it is.  We use the English language as the basis for translation into math language.  In the courses, we look at the concepts being taught and what words are used to describe what is happening.  Students tend to find learning this way gives them access to long term learning as opposed to a short term recall.  For me building the foundation and creating problem solvers are the most important skills students come away with in the courses.  They get to see math from the view of identifying a problem and finding a solution to the problem.  
 
We have many ways of communicating with students as well.  Students can participate in weekly live online class sessions or they can do the course as a self-paced option.  However families decide to do the course, we also offer weekly extra help sessions that are live and online.  Students bring their individual questions to the extra help session for additional support during the session.  Currently we offer 2 extra help sessions per week.       
...
 
Dennis DiNoia, M.A.Ed"

 

Edited by dereksurfs
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My research continues... As a result, I found another family on these boards who take Mr. D classes. With her permission, I will share her feedback here as well:

 

"Hi Derek,

 

This is our second year using Mr. D math through our homeschool co-op.  We do not do the live online class because Mr D (or sometimes another teacher) comes to our co-op and teaches the concepts for the week.  I really like the program a lot.  It is very thorough I think the concepts as well as the "why" are explained very well.  Mr. D is also very accessible, and very ready and willing to answer any and all questions.  He offers live help sessions twice a week (Monday and Thursday) to anyone who needs it. 

 

I have an older son who is a freshman in private school.  When he had algebra in 7th grade there was one concept that he just did not understand (and neither did I).  It took me at least 4 hours one night to figure it out.  Now that my younger son is in algebra I took a peek at Mr. D's video for that lesson and he made it so easy to understand. 

 

It is so well done that I really don't have to do anything with my son regarding math.  He has picked everything up without needing my help.  I like the independence it has give him.

 

If I had to pick one thing that I didn't like about the program it would be that I wish there were more word problems.  You know, the old "two trains are leaving opposite stations...."  :lol:  I haven't looked ahead to the rest of the year so maybe it picks up a little bit more as they explore more topics.

 

I hope that helps.  One last thing - the first few months of Algebra I were a very thorough review of pre-algebra.  So if it were me and your child has already been exposed to prealgebra, I would probably start with Algebra I.  I have heard several parents from co-op say they wish they hadn't done pre-algebra and just gone right into Algebra I.  For what it is worth.

 

If you have any other questions please let me know." - Pink and Green Mom

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My research continues... As a result, I found another family on these boards who take Mr. D classes. With her permission, I will share her feedback here as well:

 

"Hi Derek,

 

This is our second year using Mr. D math through our homeschool co-op.  We do not do the live online class because Mr D (or sometimes another teacher) comes to our co-op and teaches the concepts for the week.  I really like the program a lot.  It is very thorough I think the concepts as well as the "why" are explained very well.  Mr. D is also very accessible, and very ready and willing to answer any and all questions.  He offers live help sessions twice a week (Monday and Thursday) to anyone who needs it. 

 

I have an older son who is a freshman in private school.  When he had algebra in 7th grade there was one concept that he just did not understand (and neither did I).  It took me at least 4 hours one night to figure it out.  Now that my younger son is in algebra I took a peek at Mr. D's video for that lesson and he made it so easy to understand. 

 

It is so well done that I really don't have to do anything with my son regarding math.  He has picked everything up without needing my help.  I like the independence it has give him.

 

If I had to pick one thing that I didn't like about the program it would be that I wish there were more word problems.  You know, the old "two trains are leaving opposite stations...."  :lol:  I haven't looked ahead to the rest of the year so maybe it picks up a little bit more as they explore more topics.

 

I hope that helps.  One last thing - the first few months of Algebra I were a very thorough review of pre-algebra.  So if it were me and your child has already been exposed to prealgebra, I would probably start with Algebra I.  I have heard several parents from co-op say they wish they hadn't done pre-algebra and just gone right into Algebra I.  For what it is worth.

 

If you have any other questions please let me know." - Pink and Green Mom

 

I wanted to come and find this thread to answer directly as well.  We use Mr. D math through our homeschool co-op in Tampa (he is based out of Sarasota, FL) and really love it.  My son is in 6th grade and Algebra I and really "gets it."  I believe Mr. D does a very thorough job with teaching the concepts and I can really see the wheels turning when my son explains something he learned and how to apply it.  And to be brutally honest:  another thing I love is that my son can do this all on his own without me having to look over his shoulder, grade papers, or - gasp - recall algebra.  He is completely independent with the program.

 

Mr. D is very accessible and more than happy to answer questions.  And he is just a genuinely nice person.  I did just see something from him that he will be coming to various state homeschool conventions this year so it may be something people want to check out.  He also offers a 6 or 8 week "bridge to . . ." summer program to help kids get ready for the next level of math.  It may be a less expensive way of checking out the style, content, etc.

 

I am happy to answer any questions.

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Both of my kids are using Mr. D. math this year.  They are taking live classes through the Tampa co-op.   This is my DS's 2nd year with Mr. D. (taking Geometry now and Algebra I last year) and my DD's 1st year (taking Pre-Algebra).   Mr. D. doesn't teach at the Tampa co-op, but another teacher, Mr. Henderson (actually his first name, but the kids love him and call him "Mr. H.") teaches there.

 

I will echo what others have said that Mr. D. is very approachable and helpful.   I have emailed him several times over the past two years and he always responds very quickly.    My DS took the ITBS with him last year and he did a phone consultation after scores were distributed to make sure I understood the scores, and answered other questions at the same time.   In addition to the math classes, he also teaches SAT/ACT prep classes and a "Life Skills for Teens" class that my DS wants to take, but it hasn't worked with our schedule this year.

 

My DS is a STEM-oriented student and has easily maintained A's with the curriculum.   He scored in the 90th+ percentiles for Math on the IOWA test for 8th grade last May, and his math subtest on the PSAT last October (taken as a 9th grader) was 600.   The only PSAT section where he didn't score in the "meets or exceeds benchmark" range was Passport to Advanced Math, because the test covered math concepts he hasn't studied yet.

 

Prior to using Mr. D. for Algebra I and Geometry, my DS used Horizons Math through book 6, then Lial's Pre-Algebra.   Prior to using Mr. D. for Pre-Algebra, my DD used Horizons Math through book 2, then Math-U-See through Epsilon, then Teaching Textbooks 5-7.   DD is not a STEM-oriented student but has done well in Pre-Algebra - she's maintained a high B/low A grade so far through the year.

 

With the in-person co-op classes and the live online classes, the teacher walks through the material and the kids are encouraged to print out and work through the course material during class.   Each week, there are multiple (3x per week?) live online help sessions available, plus the recorded video teaching for each section.   For the at-your-own-pace curriculum, your child would watch the recorded video teaching, then work through the coursework, then take the online quizzes and chapter tests.

 

I have a friend who uses the at-your-own-pace curriculum, and wasn't checking the gradebook last year to make sure her DS was keeping up with the assignments, then when she checked the gradebook she saw that he had only done about 30% of the assignments and online quizzes.   I tend to check daily, because it's much easier for me to keep up with it every day rather than waiting for weeks or months.   I think it's less likely for things to slip under the radar with an online class or live class.

 

Both of my kids have done the summer prep classes and Mr. D. taught them live himself.   They both enjoyed them and learned more than they expected, but they weren't very difficult.   

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Dereksurfs, our girls have the live classes with Mr D today and while watching with them, I remembered that Mr D also gives each family a code to access IXL Math for extra practice.  We've used IXL anytime the girls needed more practice. 

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Both of my kids are using Mr. D. math this year.  They are taking live classes through the Tampa co-op.   This is my DS's 2nd year with Mr. D. (taking Geometry now and Algebra I last year) and my DD's 1st year (taking Pre-Algebra).   Mr. D. doesn't teach at the Tampa co-op, but another teacher, Mr. Henderson (actually his first name, but the kids love him and call him "Mr. H.") teaches there.

 

I will echo what others have said that Mr. D. is very approachable and helpful.   I have emailed him several times over the past two years and he always responds very quickly.    My DS took the ITBS with him last year and he did a phone consultation after scores were distributed to make sure I understood the scores, and answered other questions at the same time.   In addition to the math classes, he also teaches SAT/ACT prep classes and a "Life Skills for Teens" class that my DS wants to take, but it hasn't worked with our schedule this year.

 

My DS is a STEM-oriented student and has easily maintained A's with the curriculum.   He scored in the 90th+ percentiles for Math on the IOWA test for 8th grade last May, and his math subtest on the PSAT last October (taken as a 9th grader) was 600.   The only PSAT section where he didn't score in the "meets or exceeds benchmark" range was Passport to Advanced Math, because the test covered math concepts he hasn't studied yet.

 

Prior to using Mr. D. for Algebra I and Geometry, my DS used Horizons Math through book 6, then Lial's Pre-Algebra.   Prior to using Mr. D. for Pre-Algebra, my DD used Horizons Math through book 2, then Math-U-See through Epsilon, then Teaching Textbooks 5-7.   DD is not a STEM-oriented student but has done well in Pre-Algebra - she's maintained a high B/low A grade so far through the year.

 

With the in-person co-op classes and the live online classes, the teacher walks through the material and the kids are encouraged to print out and work through the course material during class.   Each week, there are multiple (3x per week?) live online help sessions available, plus the recorded video teaching for each section.   For the at-your-own-pace curriculum, your child would watch the recorded video teaching, then work through the coursework, then take the online quizzes and chapter tests.

 

I have a friend who uses the at-your-own-pace curriculum, and wasn't checking the gradebook last year to make sure her DS was keeping up with the assignments, then when she checked the gradebook she saw that he had only done about 30% of the assignments and online quizzes.   I tend to check daily, because it's much easier for me to keep up with it every day rather than waiting for weeks or months.   I think it's less likely for things to slip under the radar with an online class or live class.

 

Both of my kids have done the summer prep classes and Mr. D. taught them live himself.   They both enjoyed them and learned more than they expected, but they weren't very difficult.   

 

Thanks, SebastianCat. It looks like the forum members using Mr. D courses are coming out of the woodwork.  :thumbup:  This is very helpful as I could find so little on his program at first. I did however find some blog posts which seemed to have very good things to say overall. Here's one from a former math educator which I found very informative as well: http://mathgeekmama.com/online-high-school-math-curriculum-review/

 

There are couple of other things I find very cool:

 

1. He offers the additional weekly help sessions at no extra cost. That goes for the both the asynchronous courses as well as the live courses. This is really great for those who can use the extra help on an as needed basis.

2. He also offers sibling discounts which can be significant along with returning student discounts. For example, we have two dds who would take classes at the same time next year (Pre-Algebra/Algebra 1). According to Mr. D, our middle dd would pay the full price of $197. while our second daughter gets a 25% discount at a returning student price of $97 which is $72.75.  Then in the following the year our returning student pays $97 and the sibling only pays $72.75. So our youngest dd gets to take her first online course for only $72 which includes extra help sessions. :ohmy: That's a super deal for quality instruction.

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