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How do the homeschoolers deal with math curriculum?

Original post made by LT, Midtown, on Apr 29, 2009

I would like to find out if the homeschoolers in our community use math tutors, online resources, parents, or any other ways to master math curriculum and be competitive with other kids.

Could you please share the information?

Thank you!

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Posted by Afterschooling Math
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 29, 2009 at 7:14 pm

I am not a homeschooler, but have been "afterschooling" my math-anxious child in math since my child was in second grade.

Here are some resources/reference material that I have found helpful:

Singapore Math
You can purchase the books at the Singapore Math website and you can search Yahoo Groups for helpful advice from folks who already use the curriculum.

Rather than having to generate your own math fact practice worksheets you can have your child practice online for a monthly fee. My child was initially very anxious about timed math tests and dreaded the little slips of paper that the second grade teacher sent home for us to practice with. However, after a LOT of practice on MathScore timed tests are not nearly so irksome. My child actually now enjoys beating the clock and working towards the goal of accumulating points, ranks and awards. The site will send a nightly email to parents documenting all the work that the child does on a given day. Web Link

Whizz Education
Whizz Education is the leading online math tutor in the UK. My child was very jazzed about this when we used it one summer. Children have a virtual bedroom that they can decorate with stuff they buy in the Whizz shop using points that they earn by learning new math topics and taking quizzes. I like this site a lot because it presents the topics well and requires mastery of each topic before advancing in a particular area. However, it is very expensive. Also, my child lost interest after a while when there were no new things being added to the Whizz shop. If you choose to use it, just be aware that your child's initial enthusiasm may wane after a while. Web Link

Life of Fred (For older children, pre-algebra and up):
I found out about this book series on the Well Trained Mind Forums. (The WTMF is a good source for curriculum reviews, but be aware that that it trends toward a Christian homeschooler slant.) I purchased the first book: "Life of Fred: Fractions". My child thinks the first few chapters are funny, but we haven't gotten very far into the book. I can't give a thumbs up or down yet, but you might want to take a peek: Web Link

Japanese Math Curriculum
I think that the Singapore Math curriculum is very good, but I recently learned about this textbook series, and about the Japanese concept of "lesson study" from the Kitchen Table Math blog. Web Link

Ever wondered what specific topics were covered on the Trends in Mathematics and Science Study? Released assessment questions can be found here: Web Link

Good luck in your quest to find the right math materials for your children.

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