Catherine Posted October 26, 2008 Share Posted October 26, 2008 My ds, sixth grader and math lover, is finishing up singapore. My oldest went to Thinkwell Intermediate Algebra after singapore 6, and while he was able to grasp the material, he did not retain it well. This may mean nothing about the curriculum itself, but more about the presentation, his level of math-intuitiveness, whatever. The bottom line is that I am questioning the progression straight to algebra. Options I'm considering: 1. Straight to algebra. This kid loves math and has not met a concept yet that he wasn't all over in no time. He asked for algebra. Of course he has no idea what it is, but anyhoo...if I go this route-Lial's? Thinkwell? Others? 2. Lial's BCM first. Solidify concepts. Maybe needs this? I'm not sure. I do want him to have an absolutely solid foundation before progressing to higher math. 3. Keys to...we have not covered negative numbers yet. Any thoughts on "bridging" studies? Maybe we should just do NEM. I have no idea here people! Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

EKS Posted October 26, 2008 Share Posted October 26, 2008 You could do the Key to Algebra workbook that covers negative numbers (I think it's the first one) and then go to Jacobs Algebra. The first six (or so) chapters are what I would call "prealgebra". Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

KAR120C Posted October 26, 2008 Share Posted October 26, 2008 Actually we dabbled in a couple different things for a couple months and then just went to NEM. :) It covers negative numbers pretty early.. in fact the first four chapters or so are really heavy review of arithmetic (like "pre-algebra") with some added bits. Mostly review though. From there we did just the Algebra chapters (skipping geometry to keep the sequence the way I want it), and finished up those sections of NEM 1 & 2, plus a little supplementing (I wanted him to have seen the quadratic formula) in that first year. We also threw in a little bit of practice with the Keys To books and some extra challenge with Gelfand's Algebra. This year he's doing Statistics and some geometry (Zome), and some algebra review. Next year I plan to go back to NEM and finish Geometry (supplementing with Euclid and some straight proofs.. not strictly necessary but I like it that way!) Then we're going to continue alternating things. I don't think you have to alternate, or that you have to do Algebra as a single year and Geometry as a separate year... it just happens to be how we're doing it... but I like that he hit Algebra, plowed through, and is now getting to cycle back around through it in bits and pieces, both by using it in Statistics and by just having some straight review to do. It's been a good balance between having new topics to really sink his teeth into vs. coming back around to things he might not remember on one pass. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

jeri Posted October 26, 2008 Share Posted October 26, 2008 I think I am a year or so behind you but thinking along the same lines. My dd finished SM6, Russian Math 6, and just started NEM1 this fall. We are just finishing up with the prealgebra section (ch 1-4) and finally today I sat down to figure out where to go after this year. I am thinking abouut doing through ch 8 (dont' have it in front of me, but basically doing the alg but skipping geom), then doiing the alg chapters in NEM2. At this point, I;m not sure if we should do an American geom text (I have a 1970 one), a foreign geom text (Kislev through SM and I have Solomonovitch), the SM geom (basically go back to NEM1 andn NEM2 geom sections), OR go into alg 2 using Dolciani Alg 2. Anyy thoughts? Also, do you know if you have to do geom before trig? I think that's how I did it in h.s., buut that was many years ago. Thanks for your input! jeri Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

cbollin Posted October 26, 2008 Share Posted October 26, 2008 The bottom line is that I am questioning the progression straight to algebra. That sounds like me last year. My oldest was at the middle of 6th grade and finished 6B. I just knew something in me said "wait on starting algebra". It wasn't that I didn't think she couldn't handle the algebra concepts, it was more that I didn't think she'd be ready for longer day of math. Not that this is what you should do necessarily..... I ended up getting a prealgebra program for 7th grade in order to hold off for a while and let her get older for a few more months. That way she could get familiar with taking tests too and learning math from a traditional textbook and doing that more independently. That met more of my goals academically than just jumping ahead into Algebra. My dh and I didn't see a real need to rush into algebra at 7th grade. I did Algebra in 8th grade when I was in public school decades ago and still had time to take AP calc. My dh was put on a faster math track when he was in high school. By 12th grade he was taking differential equations (sophomore level college math) at a local university. Either way (algebra in 7th or 8th grade) was still an advanced track in our eyes. Just wanted to say that if you're thinking that you don't want to jump right to algebra for any reason, you're not the only one who didn't. And those were some of our reasons for why my dh and I decided not to. -crystal Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

KAR120C Posted October 26, 2008 Share Posted October 26, 2008 At this point, I;m not sure if we should do an American geom text (I have a 1970 one), a foreign geom text (Kislev through SM and I have Solomonovitch), the SM geom (basically go back to NEM1 andn NEM2 geom sections), OR go into alg 2 using Dolciani Alg 2. Anyy thoughts? Also, do you know if you have to do geom before trig? I've gone around and around on the geometry text question... they all look so good... :) The reason I think we're going to go with NEM is less to do with it being "better" (although I think it is very strong in the critical thinking side of things -- my favorite part -- even without formal proofs), and more to do with knowing that Singapore has been a good fit all along and a predictable success in that regard. Because I like the formal proofs, and because I think Euclid needs at least a nod (and because of our family motto: "whatever's worth doing is worth overdoing" followed immediately by our other family motto: "oh look! something shiny!") I'm adding in two things for geometry. First, Zome. It's not a complete program by any means, but it touches on a LOT of the major concepts, and it's fun. We have a group doing that together this year as an "enrichment" class. And second, concurrent with the NEM geometry sections next year, just reading through Euclid and doing constructions. I have a study guide (Euclid: The Creation of Mathematics by Benno Artmann) which makes it fairly painless, and helps with the pacing. I like Euclid because it's completely "undigested" -- just the straightedge and the compass and the proof... and you have to wade through it and discuss and try things. What I've not liked about other geometry books in general is that some of them tend to spoon feed predigested geometry... which for someone who has trouble with math could be ideal (just so they get the general ideas and know how they fit together), but for a kid who does really well in math I think prevents him from really sinking his teeth into it (to extend the metaphor to its extreme! LOL) On the trig question, I'd definitely do geometry first. What constitutes "basic trig" for SAT prep or whatever is very minimal and could be done early, but to really get into it you have to understand some things about triangles and circles that are covered in geometry... and I'd like to have the idea behind a proof solidly established before then. Generally with trig problems there are eight different, valid ways to get to an answer, but they depend on your having taken neat, reliable steps through the problem. Each step relies on the ones before, and on the relationships among the different functions... Just like a proof. :) The other thing I like about geometry before Algebra 2 is it gives us more time to review Algebra 1 and make sure it's absolutely positively solid and that basic manipulations (including factoring) are second nature. Because DS is on the ridiculously-young side, we have a lot of time to go around in circles.... hence our "alternating year" plan -- Algebra 1, Statistics, Geometry, something else, Algebra 2 & Trig, something else, Precalculus or Calculus. So he gets three years of reviewing and using Algebra 1 before he officially moves on to Algebra 2. And a chance to do some really interesting stuff... I'm voting for Cryptography myself. ;) But in a general sense I do like having (at least) a year in between Algebras just so it can be reviewed and applied for a while. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

AngieW in Texas Posted October 26, 2008 Share Posted October 26, 2008 When my dd finished up 6B in April of her 6th grade year, I had her do a one month free trial of aleks pre-algebra (she hated it) and work through Math Smart Junior. After that, she started in on a combination of Kinetic Books Algebra I and Jacobs Elementary Algebra. She switched from one program to the other at the end of each chapter all the way up to chapter 8. At that point, she decided that the instruction in Kinetic Books was much better than in Jacobs and switched to using Kinetic Books exclusively. She'll finish Kinetic Books Algebra I some time in December. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

Catherine Posted October 26, 2008 Author Share Posted October 26, 2008 For those of you who used NEM, what is your plan after completing it? A traditional math program, and if so, what level? Does it end roughly after a traditional Geometry program would? Thanks! Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

KAR120C Posted October 26, 2008 Share Posted October 26, 2008 For those of you who used NEM, what is your plan after completing it? A traditional math program, and if so, what level? Does it end roughly after a traditional Geometry program would? Thanks! NEM covers most of Algebra 1, Geometry and Algebra 2. It's not identical to the US sequence, but it's close. There's a Singapore book called New Additional Math (to be used concurrently with NEM 3 and/or 4) which I've been told pretty much makes up the difference... and there's Singapore's College Math, which apparently gets into calculus... but at that point I think I'll probably use US college texts... either with a distance ed type setup or with the intention of prepping for the AP Calculus exam. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

dragon_horse_0002 Posted October 31, 2008 Share Posted October 31, 2008 What Eulid book is it? How is it compared to Kiselev's Geometry?How much do you like Zome:Geometry? What are the strong points of each book? What grade do you start your kid with Gelfand's Algebra? To me, it is a great supplement, but I dont know when is the good time to introduce it to my ds. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

KAR120C Posted October 31, 2008 Share Posted October 31, 2008 What Eulid book is it? How is it compared to Kiselev's Geometry?How much do you like Zome:Geometry? What are the strong points of each book?What grade do you start your kid with Gelfand's Algebra? To me, it is a great supplement, but I dont know when is the good time to introduce it to my ds. Sorry - by "Euclid" I meant "The Elements"... I guess he did write other stuff, but The Elements is his major claim to fame. It's technically a textbook, but it was written what, like 2200 years ago? so you know... not particularly modern. ;) Things have changed a bit (but just a bit) since then so I don't know that I'd use it as a primary textbook, but it's an excellent supplement, especially with the Benno Artmann book as a guide. I think it's a particularly good illustration of geometric proofs. I've not looked at Kiselev closely enough to compare it to anything, so I'm afraid I can't help you there. I've only seen the excerpts available online. Euclid, though, is available online in full text if you want to glance through it yourself. Zome is fun... it's also not a full primary textbook, but a really excellent supplement -- lots of hands-on stuff, building polyhedra of various types, with a good balance of instructions and space to discover. Very proof-oriented, although in a less-formal way that I would do if it were my primary text. The sequence of activities has been perfect, although I'd say the pacing is a little uneven. Some lessons take several hours to complete while others are very quick. Again, good for a supplement but maybe not ideal for your primary work. We started Gelfand when we started Algebra... so directly after Singapore Primary 6B. It's heavy on discussion and light on written work/ practice, which was just what we needed at the time. We did about six months of that and one other (much lighter) program, and then switched to NEM full time and kept Gelfand for extra on-the-side work. I hope this helps! Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

dragon_horse_0002 Posted November 2, 2008 Share Posted November 2, 2008 What website is that I can read the full text of Euclid online? I think Gelfand is more difficult than normal Algebra textbooks. It is a good supllement, but does not cover enough all topics for the textbook. I think the Gelfand's is more difficult than Introduction of Algebra of AOPS. Thank for your reply. Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...

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