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Switching from Abeka to Saxon math

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It would be almost impossilbe for a student to go from ABeka Algebra 1 into Saxon Algebra 2. The programs are just that different--and (gently) ABeka is not a strong program.


In your situation I would suggest moving into a Geometry program (please do NOT use ABeka and you can e-mail me if you need specific reasons). While your student works Geometry have them 'review' Algebra 1 either using a computer based program like ALEKS or using a solid Algebra 1 text. Geometry programs to consider: Jacobs, Larson (Chalkdust) and even Teaching Textbooks.


After the year of Geometry and a bit of Algebra 1 review, your student will be ready to move into any Algebra 2 program (other than Saxon).


Saxon has a unique method and scope and sequence. It is nearly impossible for the average student to 'join in' after Algebra 1.


I've taught ABeka Algebra and Geometry before (private Christian school). I've also taught Saxon's high school texts many times.



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Oh dear, I guess I have a lot more research to do. I've really messed things up with this eldest son, changing math programs constantly. He's not strong in math, but has done decently the last couple years with Lial's BCM and now Abeka Algebra. He's currently a third of the way through Algebra 1.


So should I switch to a different Algebra in the fall? Or sooner? Can you recommend another program? What about switching to Saxon Algebra 1 right away?

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I would not suggest switching over to Saxon--especially for a student who is not strong in math. The majority of week to average math students do better with a more traditional text.


There are LOTS of choices when it comes to good, solid math programs for high school.


Your son is only 13--so he is not behind at all.


Are you needing a program with video/teaching support--or are you comfortable teaching the material (or have access to a tutor)? Is cost an issue?


How does your son learn best?

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I would suggest looking at Jacobs for Algebra 1. It flows nicely into most other programs (Foersters is suggested by the author for Algebra 2).


Even though you say your son is not a strong math student, I would still suggest using a strong curriculum--and adapting it if necessary. I'm using Lial's with my oldest dd. She worked BCM over nearly 2 years and wanted to continue with that style of text. SHE IS NOT A MATH PERSON! In fact she has some learning differences. She also learns by reading and has had success with the Lial series. I rarely have the opportunity to teach or help her as she is learning quite independently from this program. She is now working in the Intermediate Algebra text and she is doing much better than I ever though possible. I'm very glad that I did not go with a watered down math program!


The text-based programs I recommend the most are Foerster, Lial, Larson (what Chalkdust uses) and Jacobs (for Geometry and Algebra 1). All of these meet competitive state/national standards.


There are new math programs becoming available to homeschoolers all the time. The trend is for video based courses. Having a variety of choices is a good thing--but it can also cause LOTS of headaches and confusion until the decision as to which text to use is made!

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