bmninada 7 Report post Posted June 6, 2017 (edited) My son is 9, grade - 3. Recently aced Noetic learning's contest. He's already in Higher Math at school. I taught him and would like to continue teaching him. For the summer - my plan is to complete Glen Ellison's Hard Math (Elementary School) and in which he has approx. 3 to 4 new topics only to learn. It will take him till EOM August as teaching time is limited. As and when he'll be in 4th. grade, in New Jersey and where I need some assistance is: - He'll need to practice the stuff I taught him using the above book and whatever school teaches as per their core curriculum (practice, practice and practice). Which websites is best suited for this type of review based practice? - As part of furthering and reinforcing the stuff and making it challenging too was planning to use (yet to buy) Zaccaro's Upper Elementary Challenge Math. - I am currently a little unhappy in how he approaches word problems so was thinking Zaccaro's Becoming a problem solving genius. Also debating if I should also purchase Ten Things all future .... by the same author. - 1 particular book which caught my attention is Math Circles for Elementary School: Berkley 2009 available in Amazon. But not sure if its worth it or should I use it instead of the above book? - Beast Academy text books I really liked but waiting for them to open up the online teaching in 2018. Any assistance / replacements recommended - highly appreciated! Edited June 7, 2017 by bmninada Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

elmerRex 167 Report post Posted June 6, 2017 (edited) I wrote a review of Hard Maths for Elementary. It is on this site some where, but I can't link. Use Google and search "Hard Math for Elementary Review elmerRex" and you should find it. If you want to have more practice for material in the HMfE book, then get the workbook that goes with the textbook. That is probably easiest way to add in more practice. There is a series called Process Skills in Problem Solving that is very good for helping students to learn problem solving strategies and builds up word-problem solving skills bit by bit. I have not used them before, but have read many recommendations. Beast Academy I have never used. I have been told many times it is great, but it seems very expensive too me. After Saxon Math 54 and Math 65, my children find the samples very easy and pass the placement exams very well. It's very popular, but too me it isn't worth it just for a supplement, yet many report that it's best as a supplement because of not enough practice to be all by itself but I guess that varies by child. My children need much practice for the fundamentals to gain full fluency and mastery. Then, they are able to go on ahead at much faster pace. We do a lot of work to have a very powerful foundation. But I have struggled to find a good next step for our children. Math Circle is more a social event in my country, so it'd be difficult to have a math circle with just 1 child. Do you have more children that you could begin to tutor with your son? If not, I would not get a book for Math Circles. Would you like other suggestions for resources instead? Edited June 8, 2017 by elmerRex Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

Renai 37,058 Report post Posted June 6, 2017 Here's elmerRex's review: http://forums.welltrainedmind.com/topic/548821-hard-math-for-elementary-full-review-part-2-in-16/ Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

bmninada 7 Report post Posted June 7, 2017 Hello - I am not a Mathematician and I work in technology. At the end of the day I have realized this - I learned geometry, algebra, calculus, etc., etc. and for the last +30 years the only Maths I do is using numbers, that too addition, multiplication, division and subtraction, in MS Excel! Long story short, I believe and strongly believe in fundamentals. I do NOT like the US approach towards division, fractions and found Hard Maths book to be good in the sense it does a very good job in nailing the fundamentals thru addition puzzles, base-8 intro, distributive property and in-depth fractions, decimals and divisions. I have the worksheet book and will be using it during the summer vacation. Question is: what will I use starting September, 2017? Practice makes perfect. School will go in its own merry way teaching division (again), etc., etc. but the stuff I already taught him I want to practice. Which is why was looking to see if there's any website which can gauge the student's strength and automatically up the exercises. I did hear about TenMarks but my son's school does not participate. In my opinion there might not be any physical books as it'll be too huge. Now - again from September 2017 till end of academic year 2018 I would like to do this: Re enforce the things taught in summer via work-sheets. Teach him problem solving skiils and THANK YOU: I will definitely look into "Process Skills in Problem Solving" Move forward to next topics, more advanced. THANK YOU: I have just now looked into Saxon 65 but nowhere they have samples of what's inside. Its difficult to buy something - blind! Was thinking of buying something similar to : Hard Math but for middle school IMLEM Plus Edition by same author. As it seems you are well aware of the Saxon 65 book can you compare perhaps with the ToC of the book I mentioned and let me know? 1 small problem I see is multiple books of this Saxon series. My son tends not to follow the set pattern, so I tend to jump from topic to topic. In other words when we attempted Permutations/Combinations he loved it but with distributive properties he had difficulty. So I dropped it and moved to area and then over time slowly came back to it off and on. Finally, he grasped it. THANK YOU: I'll avoid the Maths Circle for now as I don't have a group. On a side note - this organization has started something relatively new. For a $50 donation, they can send over the complete class notes. As they don't have online classes they have introduced this. Once again - thank you! Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

Cake and Pi 615 Report post Posted June 7, 2017 If you're looking for enrichment during the school year, particularly with engaging worksheets, mostly focused on problem solving skills and not rote computations, I think you should look at Beast Academy again. It sounds like exactly what you're looking for. It wasn't clear to me from your posts what level math your kiddo is working on now, as I don't know what "Higher Math" at school looks like where you are. Did your 9yo find the level 5 C and D Beast placement tests easy? If so, it's probably time to move on to pre-algebra and beyond. After Beast Academy, Art of Problem Solving has a whole online practice component and textbooks, etc. if you were really wanting something online. I have a kid who did grade 4 Saxon math in PS this year. After experiences teaching several other math programs (RightStart, Singapore Primary Mathematics, MEP, Beast Academy), I was very much not impressed. There was sooooooo much repetition and review. It built soooooo slowly. There was hardly any actual problem solving, and certainly nothing I would consider challenging for the grade level. I can see Saxon really drilling into a child how to compute answers, but like you said, we have Excel and numerous other programs for the grunt work. Problem solving seems like a more valuable skill these days. Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

bmninada 7 Report post Posted June 7, 2017 @Lace - Thank you. This is going to be my strategy then: Continue with Hard Maths and finish it off over the summer. Already enrolled in Challenge Maths (noetic-learning) from school summer program and he's getting 4 assessments/week grade 4 level which gives him additional practice stuff over summer. Purchase work books from Beast Academy to further the learning during Sept. 2017 till June 2018 and buy them based off assessments (free) in Beast Academy. Do the assessments at end of August/early Sept. since by then he would have completed Hard Maths. If assessments say he's clear for (say) 3D then purchase for 3C as I want this to be more for practice of existing/known stuff. For further enrichment, i.e. next after August still debating between Zacarro or Glen or buying the complete Beast Academy NEXT set. For problem solving go with the suggestion made earlier i.e. with the Rainbow publication stuff "Process Skills in Problem Solving" as a supplementary read. Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

elmerRex 167 Report post Posted June 8, 2017 Hello - I am not a Mathematician and I work in technology. At the end of the day I have realized this - I learned geometry, algebra, calculus, etc., etc. and for the last +30 years the only Maths I do is using numbers, that too addition, multiplication, division and subtraction, in MS Excel! Long story short, I believe and strongly believe in fundamentals. I do too. I come from a country with a strong respect for fundamentals and hard work. For us, we find it easier to teach very intensive and in detail in the early years and then relax once child has a strong foundation and mastery of the basics. This means that child can focus on strictly problem solving sooner. I do NOT like the US approach towards division, fractions and found Hard Maths book to be good in the sense it does a very good job in nailing the fundamentals thru addition puzzles, base-8 intro, distributive property and in-depth fractions, decimals and divisions. I have the worksheet book and will be using it during the summer vacation. I do not remember how HMfE does fractions, decimals, divisions because we taught those things at home, and used Saxon Math also for those topics. I really did not like the way that HMfE talked about distributive property though. Which is why was looking to see if there's any website which can gauge the student's strength and automatically up the exercises. Have you heard of KhanAcademy? You might like that as an option for your family. Now - again from September 2017 till end of academic year 2018 I would like to do this: Re enforce the things taught in summer via work-sheets. If you like HMfE then go to the next book. If you finish HMfE and did NOT like the book, then begin to look for a new series. There are many out there. Some series that are about topics can be great for focusing and building up skills step by step to mastery. Teach him problem solving skiils and THANK YOU: I will definitely look into "Process Skills in Problem Solving" If child really struggles with understanding word problem, it is helpful to go down 1 or 2 levels lower than they need to be by grade. The Process Skills books are not long books and you can finish each book in 1 month if you do 1-2 pages a day, but it will provide much practice with reading and understanding word problems. Move forward to next topics, more advanced. THANK YOU: I have just now looked into Saxon 65 but nowhere they have samples of what's inside. Its difficult to buy something - blind! Was thinking of buying something similar to : Hard Math but for middle school IMLEM Plus Edition by same author. As it seems you are well aware of the Saxon 65 book can you compare perhaps with the ToC of the book I mentioned and let me know? Saxon Math books are lesson-based and Saxon Math 65 does not have chapters by topic. Some book selling websits offer samples of the book. Many schools have the books online for viewing so you can do a google search for Math 65 PDF and find it on a school website, I'm sure. 1 small problem I see is multiple books of this Saxon series. I do not know this. My family uses exactly 3 Saxon books. Saxon Math 54, Saxon Math 65 and Saxon Algebra 1. We do not have multiple books to go with them. My son tends not to follow the set pattern, so I tend to jump from topic to topic. In other words when we attempted Permutations/Combinations he loved it but with distributive properties he had difficulty. So I dropped it and moved to area and then over time slowly came back to it off and on. Finally, he grasped it. I do not know which topics your son has mastered yet, or which need more work. Saxon Math books are lesson-based. So Math 65 does not have chapters by topic. Saxon Math is meant to be done by the book. Every problem in every lesson, is to be done in order. Saxon Math 54 has more than 4000 problems in it for the student to solve. Our children solve each and every one of them. THANK YOU: I'll avoid the Maths Circle for now as I don't have a group. On a side note - this organization has started something relatively new. For a $50 donation, they can send over the complete class notes. As they don't have online classes they have introduced this. My son is thriving in problem solving books now that he is firm in all the basics and knows his fundamentals fluently. He is able to think through the problem closely and carefully. He is never straining to remember how a concept goes and when he identifies a calculation to be done, he knows how to perform it correctly and quickly. Once again - thank you! Many seem to think that Beast Academy is best as a supplement, not the main program, because it doesn't include enough practice. In my opinion Saxon Math is NOT a supplement. In my opinion, success with Saxon Math means accepting it as "all or nothing" method. Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

calbear 1,379 Report post Posted June 15, 2017 (edited) Are you thinking about skipping 3A and 3B because of placement? There's good stuff in all the books. In particular, 3A's geometry was pretty challenging for both my husband and I as it introduced topics neither of us have ever seen. They are worth doing IMO. I use Beast a level behind where my son is in Singapore on purpose so that the focus is on problem solving skills and not mastering fundamentals. Edited June 15, 2017 by calbear Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

wendyroo 6,470 Report post Posted June 15, 2017 Are you thinking about skipping 3A and 3B because of placement? There's good stuff in all the books. In particular, 3A's geometry was pretty challenging for both my husband and I as it introduced topics neither of us have ever seen. They are worth doing IMO. I use Beast a level behind where my son is in Singapore on purpose so that the focus is on problem solving skills and not mastering fundamentals. :iagree: My son is in Math Mammoth 5b as his spine, but does Beast Academy 4a as a supplement and it is still plenty challenging. I think I would almost always start a kiddo at the beginning of a Beast Academy year (in an A book). Normally 3A (until level 2 starts coming out) unless the child comfortably placed into or above 4A or 5A. Beast Academy "covers" math topics in such a wildly different fashion than other curricula, that I would not worry about a child being bored or already knowing what BA was introducing, no matter what level I placed them at. Wendy 1 Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

bmninada 7 Report post Posted September 13, 2017 All - now that September has started I wanted to update all of you - very good people!! My son goes to school and he's in UL maths (some states call it Accelerated Maths). His school is tracking his progress using Study Island and Ten Marks. I leave it up to the teachers at school to keep him practicing with basics and what he already knows. The best part I feel, after speaking to the teacher, he told if my son is already doing jamming sessions ahead of most in his class then he'll push him ahead!! I already see it in Ten Marks. At home - I went for Beast Academy and currently he's tracking to 3D but just 2 chapters following which from October he'll start with 4A. My son found the guide and practice books extremely good and interesting. I strongly believe in applied maths and how to project ideas where maths can be applied. To this effect I took this TRIAL program: Redbird Mathametics Advanced as independent study. Wanted to get some feedback from you guys on this program. My intention: is for him to "play" around and progress thru the program starting at 3.5 grade with the notion for him to understand the APPLIED side of maths. Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

Rush 183 Report post Posted September 13, 2017 I strongly believe in applied maths and how to project ideas where maths can be applied. To this effect I took this TRIAL program: Redbird Mathametics Advanced as independent study. Wanted to get some feedback from you guys on this program. My intention: is for him to "play" around and progress thru the program starting at 3.5 grade with the notion for him to understand the APPLIED side of maths. I wish to have the feedback for this one too. They have a discount today and I want to buy it for my not-maths-orientated kid, who needs to practice more and I wish to get something for an independent learning as we simply do not have more free time at all :( Share this post Link to post Share on other sites

bmninada 7 Report post Posted September 13, 2017 All I can say here is its unique in its approach. My son has been doing multiplication for sometime now but some of the practice stuff made him think. They associate a project and then almost all the questions are using that project as an example. At the end of the module that project is tracked full blown by asking my child how to solve this and that. They have good video introductions, etc. I personally found it interesting and they approached multiplications from various angles. Finally, its adaptive. I saw suddenly my son getting same type of questions over and over again and in the next module he flew thru it. 1 Share this post Link to post Share on other sites