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Struggles with Beast 5?


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Anybody else's otherwise mathy kid really struggle with Beast 5?


DS10 has never really struggled with anything in math. Even with Beast 3 and 4, he might have hit a patch of "huh?" here and there, but it was always short-lived.


But so far this year, he's just really been struggling with certain sections of Beast 5. Currently, it's the Sequences Chapter. He had some struggles with the Factors/Multiples chapter (mostly with the puzzle pages).


He's on track to begin AOPS Pre-Al after the holidays, but now I'm starting to second guess that.


I can't tell if this is a math issue (likely a lack of maturity in that he perhaps has not grown enough cognitively to handle some of the abstract stuff Beast is dishing), or if this is a 10 yr old distracted boy issue.


Anybody else's kid struggle through these books?

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  • 2 weeks later...

My DS#1 slowed down in Beast 5.  I don't know how much of that was the increase in challenge vs how much had to do with spill over from non-academic issues he's been working through, but it seemed to me that there was a noticeable step up in difficulty going from level 4 to 5.  He spent about 3x longer on level 5 than level 3, and probably close to twice as long as on level 4.  There was a 3- or 4-problem page in... 5B?  I can't remember now... that he seriously spent a solid two weeks on.  This is the same kid who did entire chapters in level 3 in 4-7 half-hour days.  BIG difference. 


5D was maybe easier than the other level 5 books.  Or, perhaps he'd just adapted to the change by that point.  5D went a lot faster than the other level 5 books anyway.


He's doing AoPS prealgebra now and it's going... alright.  Him doing it independently was rough.  I changed things so as to be more involved, and it's going better now, but not much faster.  It's looking like this book will take at least a year and a half, maybe two years for him to complete.  Sure it's challenging, but the big thing is that the problems are less kid-friendly.  They feel more sterile, maybe?  There's less buy-in with relatable and engaging characters.  He's not motivated with this like he was with BA.  He's a very distracted 9.5yo, yes, and there is certainly a miss-match between his maturity and AoPS pre-a, but there doesn't seem to be an alternative he's interested in either.  I'm still working the kinks out of our system and may be changing things up in the coming weeks.  I'm thinking of alternating AoPS chapters with other, less-main-track resources to keep math exciting and to take math-intensity breaks.  I'm thinking of it like interval training for mathematics, lol.

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