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trishalinn

Math - where should we go from here?

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Hey there! 

I have a 9th grader (kind of- we decided he will do an extra year of high school before going to college, but that’s a long story, so maybe he is 8th?) who will be about 2/3 of the way done with Saxon Algebra 2 this school year. 

He has always been good at math, but he hates it. He doesn’t have any intention into going into anything that will require science or math. 

I had originally wanted him to finish Saxon algebra 2 and advanced math. I was homeschooled and after advanced math I went straight into my college calculus classes out of high school and had no problem acing them. 

However, I realize my son won’t need calculus so I don’t want to drag the torture out. Though he has no problems with the concepts, he is sloppy and distracts easily so math takes for-ever! 

Our goals are for him to be able to CLEP our of college Algebra and do well on either the ACT or SAT math portion.

Saxon is what I know, but I think we need other options. Where would you go from here? Can’t wait to hear your suggestions. 

Edited by trishalinn

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Most colleges expect to see at least three years of math during the high school years, regardless of level.  After Algebra 2 he should probably go on to advanced math, even if it takes him two years.  Then math will still be fresher in his mind in case he changes his mind about majors or if his college requires a math course of everyone, no matter what level they have already completed.  FWIW, my nephew hated math until he took calculus; he then went on to become a math major and later a Silicon Valley entrepreneur.  So, I encourage you to keep options open for him!  Maturation does amazing things.

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We are certainly planning to continue math. I’m looking for other options besides Saxon though. The last couple years have not been fun. The only way he gets through a lesson in a timely way is if I literally sit next to him and keep him on track through the whole thing. He hates math and he’s very distracted because he hates it. I don’t have the time to sit next to him because I have 4 younger kids. There are so many curriculum choices, certainly there is something we can find that won’t fee like torture to him. 

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2 hours ago, trishalinn said:

We are certainly planning to continue math. I’m looking for other options besides Saxon though. The last couple years have not been fun. The only way he gets through a lesson in a timely way is if I literally sit next to him and keep him on track through the whole thing. He hates math and he’s very distracted because he hates it. I don’t have the time to sit next to him because I have 4 younger kids. There are so many curriculum choices, certainly there is something we can find that won’t fee like torture to him. 

Have you ever tried anything but Saxon? Has he ever enjoyed any topic at all? I would definitely switch him out of Saxon given this level of negative feeling. Does he like puzzles or games? 

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We are open to book or video. 

Several years ago we did teaching textbooks and he did two lessons a day for over half the year because they were easy. So he went through two levels of that. But it didn’t feel like it was rigorous enough so we switched back to Saxon. 

He actually asked if we could do TT again but I don’t even know where he would go if we did that. 

He likes plenty of other subjects, just not math. 

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24 minutes ago, trishalinn said:

We are open to book or video. 

Several years ago we did teaching textbooks and he did two lessons a day for over half the year because they were easy. So he went through two levels of that. But it didn’t feel like it was rigorous enough so we switched back to Saxon. 

He actually asked if we could do TT again but I don’t even know where he would go if we did that. 

He likes plenty of other subjects, just not math. 

 

To me, he kind of sounds bored. Has he ever tried any more challenging math? Math contests, less traditional curricula, puzzles?  

ETA: in terms of topics, I meant was he ever enthusiastic about any mathematical topic? 

Edited by square_25

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7 hours ago, square_25 said:

 

To me, he kind of sounds bored. Has he ever tried any more challenging math? Math contests, less traditional curricula, puzzles?  

ETA: in terms of topics, I meant was he ever enthusiastic about any mathematical topic? 

 

No, he has never been interested in math. I’m certainly open to trying some less traditional curriculum. Any suggestions? 

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Teaching Textbooks goes through PreCal.  Have him take the placement test to see if it's a possibility, or if he is too advanced.  Mathusee might work for him, too, but I find at the upper levels, you need someone to be able to help/answer questions because Mr. Demme's teaching gets a little... vague at times.  Mathusee goes through Calculus.

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Mr. D goes through Precaluclus and is very straightforward. After that he could look at AP Statistics. The PA homeschoolers course reviews well. 

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10 hours ago, trishalinn said:

 

No, he has never been interested in math. I’m certainly open to trying some less traditional curriculum. Any suggestions? 

 

I might just look around at a variety of material and see what he enjoys first, personally. Try some puzzles, try some AMC 8/10 questions, try something like Life of Fred, try reading some entertaining math (Murderous Maths? Martin Gardiner?) I'd be curious about if there's any of it that will actually inspire him to put in the effort. It's hard to work at something that seems pointless to you! 

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