So in my 8 month career as a homeschooling mom I have discovered I am super confident in Math. I can teach it. It’s logical and there is always only one answer (university math aside). I really feel that Tweedle E has gotten more out of his math this year than any other year and even though he hates it with the heat of 1000 burning suns, he is pretty good at it.
We have been using Saxon Math. I like it because it explains things really well and there is a lot of opportunity to practice what you have learned. I also like the basic facts drills which I strongly believe there is not enough emphasis put on in public school. What Tweedle E hates about Saxon is it is dreadfully long, tedious, and dry. First you do a 100 basic facts sheet, read a 2-3 page lesson (in all fairness goes quite quick, but can be overwhelming for him) then 2-8 practice questions from that lesson, then 30 mixed questions from current and previous lessons. It makes math a battlefield where there is no love. Sorry Pat Benatar.
I have taken to some modifications in the lesson because he was shortcutting and skipping just to get through it and that was leading to mistakes. So every other day we do the 100 basic facts then we do all the lesson practice and alternate evens and odds in the mixed practice. He doesn’t feel as overwhelmed. Because of that he has less mistakes because there is less shortcutting or skipping. Yay! 🙂
Sometimes we brake up the drills with XtraMath. All my boys like it. Its easy to see a bit colourful and has a bit of competition (main male motivator) built in, and it’s fast. Best of all it’s on the computer and they graph their progress so mom can visually see how awesome her kids are doing.
After the first placement test in addition facts Tweedles D and E had a score in the 60s and 30s now in three months of sketchy practice they have both increased 30 points at least. Tweedle 3 has even tried and just through repetition he now knows his “0”s addition facts and a few of his “1”s.
Just two more months to go, because in Canada we like to torture everyone by making school last until well into summer… ahem… and I am feeling confident in that Tweedle E is on track or grade level with his math.
P.S. If we do Homeschooling again next year, we will be looking for another curriculum that has the clarity of saxon but is a little more fun. And yes math can be fun.