I think I have tried almost every single math curriculum out there.
- Modern Curriculum Press
- Math U See
- Christian Light
- Khan Academy
- Time 4 Learning
- Teaching Textbooks
and even a community college Elementary Algebra textbook (which DID work just fine for my then 8th grade daughter).
Yes, all of these. Some were long-standing and worked well. Others were fleeting and frustrating. Some became frustrating as we reached higher levels.
None worked out for every year, for every child.
There is no other area in my years of homeschooling that has been as frustrating to me as teaching math.
I’m not math phobic (any more). After teaching 5 kids elementary math, it’s rather hard to NOT get it. I do. I am even fine with algebra, although I’ve never taught beyond Algebra 1.
It just seems like there is one issue or another with every single program. One spends far too long on one concept. Another gives way too many problems. Another few spiral so much that it made our heads spin. One leaves major gaps. Another assumes a child knows many concepts they weren’t taught in this particular grade level, and doesn’t offer examples or review. And another works fine online but just doesn’t have any paper and pencil lessons.
The point here is that there is NO perfect curriculum. There will always be something with every single one. The key is to figure out what you really want or need from a math program, and then find that. If you can ignore or work around the annoying parts, then it’s useful.
I finally decided to get off the math curriculum merry go round and signed my boys up for an online math class with Live Online Math. Here is where I need to tell you that I have no relationship with them whatsoever, I am not an affiliate and I do not benefit from telling you about them. I’m just saying that this is the solution I’ve come up with.
Both boys are taking an online video math course, and while they aren’t saying “Wow Mom! This is awesome!” They ARE getting the concepts. They DO think the teacher’s recorded lessons are good and explain things well. They don’t hate it.
That’s a win for me.
After searching and trying out many different programs, the decision to delegate this subject to someone else was enlightening. It’s huge, people. Huge. You do know we can delegate these things, right? You are not a failure as a homeschool mom if you realize that teaching math just isn’t your thing. Or science. Or driver’s ed. Or whatever. Oh, but I do teach my kids to drive. That doesn’t bother me as much as integers do. Go figure.
Live Online Math is a great alternative to teaching them myself. They offer Live classes, live/video combo courses, and video only courses. The teacher and site owner is a homeschool dad from right here in my city, and he is involved in every aspect of his program. I appreciate the fact that when we had trouble logging in for the first time, I called the support # on the site and Mr. Bovey answered the phone. He is also available for additional tutoring (for cost but not overly expensive) if we need it. He teaches the lessons (my kids watch the video lessons), they copy their assignments down, do them, and check their answers when they are finished. Quizzes and Tests are done and graded online.
So I’m not going crazy. Any more.
How many math programs have YOU tried? What did you finally settle on that is working?