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Life of Fred - Full Math Programme or Supplement

Could Life of Fred be used as a complete Math Programme?  

  1. 1. Could Life of Fred be used as a complete Math Programme?

    • Absolutely!
    • Yes, but only with a slower learner
    • So long as arithmetic drills are included as well
    • Nope, it's a supplement only

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So the question is 'Could' Life of Fred be used as a full Math programme, or would you consider it to be only a supplement?


I'm asking mainly on behalf of my daughter, who struggles with all academics, slightly autistic and is dyslexic. She's currently working through TT Geometry, but it is reaching a point where it is becoming quite frustrating for her. We can probably battle on, but I'm wondering if Life of Fred may not be better for her.


But, can we use it as a complete Math programme?

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the story is very good and funny but the story problems require thinking strategies that if you do not have the basics really down can be confusing. He really strecthes your thinking and this is good, if you can help them along. We did call once but still could not understand it. My math skills are clearly not great so I do not blame him.


My daughter who is the most dyslexic did well with MUS, while she cried through Horizons. Now heading into 9th she may go onto to Videotext. My son who is more dsygraphic does very well with Horizons as it is just good solid formulas and repeat practice.


My son did do the first two LOF books (about half way) and did okay with it, just often frustarted with the lack of explanations. Many people have done very well with it, it just was not a good fit here. :)


I think there are so many good choices out there and each child is different-the difficulty is just finding what works for them.:tongue_smilie:



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Oldest dd tells me that she thinks it could be a complete math program. She would prefer to do only LOF. I'm not positive yet so I have her supplement with another math program just in case. My oldest dd struggles with math as I did (and still do) but LOF works better for her than using straight textbooks. I, on the other hand, do ok with LOF but feel I need more review to fully understand some concepts than what it offers for the first two books. It has never taken dd the full 5 tries to pass her bridges but I've had to do it once.

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You mentioned dyslexia. I am not knowledgeable about that, but I'm going to blow some hot air at you anyway, please forgive me! Fred is a very reading-intensive program. If there are reading difficulties, it might not be a good choice. The books use numerous font sizes and styles, the page layouts vary widely, and I find some of it very difficult to read, just physically speaking. But I'm old with the vision issues of someone 15 years older than I am, even, so take that for what it's worth.


Other than that, I can't say enough good about the Fred program. We have used it for Algebra and up, and I do supplement with another program for additional practice problems (biggest weakness IMO). They offer Home Companions for some levels that add practice also. The approach is unique, the stories are wacky, and finding the kid reading it in bed was the deal-clincher for me.


Others have mentioned that Fred's author assumes you have a rock-solid foundation ... yeah, if that isn't there, changing programs probably won't help.


All the best,


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I am not voting in the poll because I have only used the Fractions and Decimals books. IMO, they are supplements for teaching those specific topics. However -- if the student already knows the basics of fractions and decimals from lower math grades, this would be a solid Pre-Algebra course IMO.


That said -- mine are younger, and we haven't hit the higher level books, so I'm mostly just posting so I can find this thread easier in the future when I'm trying to decide whether we need to supplement Fred or not.


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I voted "absolutely" but I need to add a caveat that you didn't put on the poll LOL. If LOF works for your child, then it is definately a complete program. Like any math program, it doesn't work for everyone. I can completely understand that the above poster with the dyslexic student had trouble. It is definately not set up to benefit a student with those types of challenges.


I have used Fractions, Decimals/Percents, and Beginning Algebra and I own the rest - planning on Geometry with my oldest and Beginning Algebra with my middle next year.



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I'm asking mainly on behalf of my daughter, who struggles with all academics, slightly autistic and is dyslexic.


My partner loves math, was advanced all through school, and tutored it in college. He is, like your daughter, dyslexic. (He also has Tourette's Syndrome but I wouldn't call him academically challenged, just twitchy-while-learning. ;)) He says the drawings and font changes in the Fred books make it difficult for him to read the text. He gets a headache every time he peeks in there. The lines move around on him like crazy.


Despite that, he wants us to use it to teach our kids through twelfth grade. He thinks it's the only math program that communicates all the math ideas kids need to understand why mathematicians think and work the way they do.


I don't believe he'd recommend Fred for a dyslexic child, though, purely because of the layout issues.

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