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If your dc started failing Saxon Adv. Math tests...


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...and they were more than 1/2 way through their junior year in high school, what would you recommend doing?  

 

Say they were on Lesson 50.  Would you switch them to a different math curriculum?  Which one?  Or switch them for their senior year...maybe to an online class...would it be precalculus or what???? 

 

Say this dc routinely gets about 10-12 wrong on his homework, as well, but always corrects them in the end.  And then you started giving them second chance 1/2 credit for right answers on test questions.  Sigh...

 

Any ideas or helpful input would be great!

 

Also, say this same dc wanted to do Physics next year.  I assume the recommendation would be an algebra-based one.  Any ideas here as well would be welcomed!

 

Thanks! 

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We use Art Reed DVDs and he has recommended that Lessons 60-90 should be repeated the following year (taking 1 1/2 to 2 years for Adv. Math).  With that understanding, I decided that, rather than give partial credit, I would take off all 5 pts. and give dc a chance to get half credit if they get it all right.  By that method, they have managed to go from a D- or even a F up to a C+ or even a B.  But I am not so sure I am doing this dc any favors, although I don't fully get how you are supposed to do the same lessons twice (as we are approaching lesson 60).  This dc has also insisted on doing all 30 problems at a time (rather than 15 as Art Reed might suggest).  At the moment, the overall grade average is still a B, but I see it start to tank and I need to implement corrective measures.  Many errors are silly, but certainly not all of them.

 

Okay, so I actually have 2 dc taking this course and one of them is getting A's with few errors on hw, and the other has a propensity for carelessness and just is not as naturally gifted in math.

Edited by Omma
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...and they were more than 1/2 way through their junior year in high school, what would you recommend doing?  

 

Say they were on Lesson 50.  Would you switch them to a different math curriculum?  Which one?  Or switch them for their senior year...maybe to an online class...would it be precalculus or what???? 

 

Say this dc routinely gets about 10-12 wrong on his homework, as well, but always corrects them in the end.  And then you started giving them second chance 1/2 credit for right answers on test questions.  Sigh...

 

Any ideas or helpful input would be great!

 

Also, say this same dc wanted to do Physics next year.  I assume the recommendation would be an algebra-based one.  Any ideas here as well would be welcomed!

 

Thanks! 

How long has this student used Saxon Math? Assuming this same student used Saxon for Algebra 1 and Algebra 2, then how did they do in those courses?

 

Are they showing all of their work for each problem the first time around? As problems become longer, students try and compact and do 2 and 3 "familiar little steps" in their heads and often introduce errors into their work flow, I would encourage require students to instead show ALL of the work, on the page, even if it took 7+ lines for each problem.

 

Some times I have to explicitly tell students that after they write out the solution, they need to LEAVE the work on the page, as some students erase the work after working each problem. This makes NO sense, but I've seen a lot in my years as a math teacher...

 

I have to tell algebra students all the time: You aren't saving paper, you are learning mathematics. It is difficult to understand what the student is missing when they perform multiple steps in their heads.

 

 

If this a "hiccup" I wouldn't really switch curriculum right away. Here are all of the things that I would try first:

  • Back up several lessons. To the last point that they had a strong first time performance.
  • Have student write out all steps neatly
  • Do math in 2 sittings
  • Have them teach the lessons at a whiteboard so that we could pick out what is tangled and perhaps why
  • Every time that they made an error, I'd have them highlight it and make a note in the margin what they SHOULD have done.
  • Do math 6 or 7 days a week

If none of this helped, then I'd have to come back and re-evaluate.

Edited by mathmarm
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Hi Mathmarm,

 

I am sure your tips will be helpful for many, many moms reading this today.  Thank you for the suggestions.  Although I am sure that this dc of mine would do all of the above tips for YOU, I am not so sure they would do them for me.  I did implement some of these tips earlier on in Algebra (going back 5 lessons, showing more work, teaching part of the lesson), but somehow it feels too late in the game to start that again now.  This dc does like to go over to Khan Academy to try and learn things (as they're a strong audio learner), but I don't really understand the whole idea of going back and redoing sections of the Saxon Adv. Math textbook again, as Art Reed suggests.  I thought it might help if we switched to something else for next year, but I am not sure what that would be.

 

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I think what is starting to bother me right now is that some mastery at this point would be useful (instead of just incremental).  How do you tutor/teach when the problems are hitting 20 different areas in each lesson?  You can coast for only so long and then you just start to tank!  I know this dc is determined to swim and not sink, so we'll see (it's just that they sometimes can't see that they really are starting to sink). 

 

I just really wanted to get some recommendation for switching to a different curriculum/online program in case we needed to...what could work?

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I think what is starting to bother me right now is that some mastery at this point would be useful (instead of just incremental).  How do you tutor/teach when the problems are hitting 20 different areas in each lesson?  You can coast for only so long and then you just start to tank!  I know this dc is determined to swim and not sink, so we'll see (it's just that they sometimes can't see that they really are starting to sink). 

 

I just really wanted to get some recommendation for switching to a different curriculum/online program in case we needed to...what could work?

 

This is exactly why my youngest needed different curriculum. Algebra I wasn't great, and she failed Algebra II with Saxon. She felt like she never completely mastered the concepts. It got so overwhelming that she went into a tailspin.

 

I put her in Geometry with an outside teacher using Jacob's. She got an "A."

 

This year she's in Algebra II with the first half of Foerster and has a solid "A."

 

We both really like Foerster. I don't know how the second half would match with your goals, but it's a really good math book.

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This is exactly why my youngest needed different curriculum. Algebra I wasn't great, and she failed Algebra II with Saxon. She felt like she never completely mastered the concepts. It got so overwhelming that she went into a tailspin.

 

I put her in Geometry with an outside teacher using Jacob's. She got an "A."

 

This year she's in Algebra II with the first half of Foerster and has a solid "A."

 

We both really like Foerster. I don't know how the second half would match with your goals, but it's a really good math book.

Actually, I am going to move my younger dc to Jurgensen's Geometry for next year, per Wilson Hill Academy's suggestion.  Since that dc has a natural love for geometry anyway and they are so young, I am hoping it will be a good fit.  I'm glad to hear that your youngest did so well when you moved her out of Saxon.  I can understand the frustration she must have had as I personally love to 'master' something in a linear, sequential fashion.  But not so with everyone. 

 

For my older dc who only has one more year to go before college, it is more difficult to figure out as I do not remember as much about trig as I did about algebra (which I loved).  Thus, I am not as much of a math help as I used to be...Sigh...  Too bad I am only just realizing this now. 

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My ds completed most of the Saxon Advanced Math book in 9th grade, but with more errors than I liked. I had him do Derek Owens pre calculus the following year (he aced the class...I think his Grade was around a 98%). He then went on to take AP Calculus AB his junior year, and AP Calc BC his senior year at PA Homeschoolers and did fantastic. Not sure if repeating pre calculus is an option for you, and looking back I am not sure it was needed for ds (he felt he DO class was easy after taking Saxon Advanced Math), but it made me feel better knowing he had a firm background before moving on to Calculus.

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I wonder if you switched him over to Derek Owens Alg 2 for the rest of this year (either starting at the beginning or 2nd semester) to cement concepts & make things clearer if that would help. Or, you could try Pre-Calc. I'm not familiar enough with Saxon Adv. Math to know where to go around Lesson 50. D.O. offers a half-priced option if you grade it yourself. It is definitely more audio/visual.

 

There are other options for at-your-own-pace or live classes, but if you want to try one right now - D.O. is probably the way to go.

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Caveat: my daughter will not be moving into pre-calc or calc at this point, and shrieks in horror at the idea of taking physics of any sort ;). Definitely a humanities kid.

 

Our original plan had been to follow the two year plan Art Reed lays out for Advanced Math, but we've changed our minds. My daughter is currently almost to lesson 60 in Adv Math and is pulling a low A. Our plan is to stop at lesson 60, the portion that Art Reed says will cover a "Geometry with advanced algebra" credit, and I am going to have her try a practice CLEP test for College Algebra. She will take statistics in dual enrollment at the community college next semester, so her math credits for high school will be algebra I, algebra II, geometry with advanced algebra, and statistics. 

 

In your case, you might consider finishing through lesson 60 for the geometry credit, then switching to a different program for trig/precalculus (which is what is covered in the remainder of the Advanced Math book). If dual enrollment is an option, you might look at College Algebra (which is an advanced algebra class). Definitely algebra-based physics. I jumped into a calculus-based physics class at the same time I was learning calculus and it was challenging, even though I had had an algebra-based one in high school.

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Thanks, Karen.  I couldn't remember when Art Reed said Geometry would be covered.  That is great to know that it is at Lesson 60.  Somehow I was thinking it might be 90 and then I would be in a bit of trouble!

 

The 1-90 was to give enough lessons at one every other day to fill out an 180 day school year, then for the second year repeat 60-90 for review, finish the book, and do the first 25 or so of the Saxon Calculus book.

 

Here's what I'm using for my rationale:

http://usingsaxon.com/newsletterpage-2015.php

 

In the Oct 2015 section:

 Advanced Mathematics: Use “Geometry with Advanced Algebra" (1 credit) after they have completed lessons 1 - 60.

     Advanced Mathematics: Use Trigonometry w/Pre-Calculus (1 Credit) after they have completed lessons 61 - 125.

 

And in the Aug 2015 section:

The DVD tutorial series for the second edition of John‘s Advanced Mathematics book that I have prepared allows students three different choices based upon their needs and capabilities.

    1. They can follow my advice and take the course in two years (doing a lesson every two days). Thereby gaining credit for the first academic year of “Geometry w/Advanced Algebra,†with a first semester credit for Trigonometry and a second semester credit for Pre-calculus in their second academic year. Or -

    2. They can take the course in three semesters. Their first semester credit would be titled Geometry, followed by a second semester credit for Trigonometry w/Advanced Algebra; ending with a third semester credit for Pre-calculus.

      - or-

    3. While not recommended – they can take the entire 125 lessons in the Advanced Mathematics book in a single school year gaining credit for a full year of Geometry along with a semester credit for Trigonometry w/Advanced Algebra. In all the years that I taught the subject, I only had one student complete the entire Advanced Math course of 125 lessons in a single school year – with a test average above ninety percent - and she was a National Merit Scholar whose father taught mathematics with me at the local university.

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Okay, that is EXTREMELY helpful, Karen. 

 

I'm trying to involve my dc in the solution, and that dc 'doesn't know yet' what they want to do.  Ideally, I think they'd like to continue with the same book, just so they aren't presented with new things they don't understand, so we're walking a bit of a tightrope at the moment.  I think it might be a good measure to see how they do going forward to Lesson 60 and taking a couple more tests in the process.  Then we should all be ready to make the best informed decision whether to break or stay on this course.

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