First grade math curriculum comparison cattle futures market news

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So, I’m homeschooling my second first grader (Did that make sense? My second son has reached first grade) and we’re on our FOURTH math curriculum futures stock market bloomberg. Actually, our curriculum-hopping spanned second grade as well. Kind of embarrassing considering that I was an education major and all!

• Early math is best learned through a balance of both practical life experiences and book work – some programs focus on drill and others focus on building number sense and thinking skills. I think that you need both.

The other day, it dawned on me that first grade math can be summed up with a fairly simple list of skills, and most of the skills can be learned through regular life. Here is what I came up with. Keep in mind that I am not a school administrator or a curriculum writer – just a mom who has used a whole bunch of math programs!


• Write and recognize numbers to 100 (A list I read online said 999, but none of the math programs that we have used have gone up that far in first grade)

Saxon Math: We started with Saxon 1st grade in Kindergarten for both Aidan and Gresham (I think that Saxon runs slightly behind). Saxon uses an approach called an “incremental approach.” This basically means that in each lesson, your child will learn a little bit of new material and will review several different concepts – counting by fives, identifying shapes, and a few addition problems, for example. The parent notebook tells you exactly what to say and do during the lesson. The lesson part in the parent notebook includes hands-on activities, and then there are worksheets to complete.

Pros: Easy to use, covers everything that your children need to know, prepares children for standardized tests. I really like the Saxon “Meeting Book.” We are currently using this for Gresham. Every day, he gets out his math meeting book and fills in the date on the calendar and records the weather on a bar graph. So good for first graders!

Cons: Learning is disjointed because the concepts are presented in such little pieces. I feel like the kids never get to really delve into a concept and master it. It’s also fairly boring, especially if your child does not need a lot of review put option vs call option. Here is a good review with some more thoughts on Saxon and concerns with the program. The more I have thought about it, I think that my main problem with Saxon is that it has not been a good use of my children’s time. They do not need to “color the circles red and color the triangles yellow.” That doesn’t teach anything about shapes! That teaches how to fill in worksheets and take standardized tests hex editor freeware. I don’t want them to be unable to fill in worksheets or take standardized tests, but I don’t feel like we need to work on those skills every day.

Math-U-See: I didn’t finish 1st grade Saxon (his kindergarten year) with Aidan because we were both so bored to death. During the summer, I tried to figure out what to do for first grade! I decided to try Math-U-See. We borrowed the first grade Math-U-See and went through it quickly before staring second grade Math-U-See partway through his first grade year. Aidan enjoyed watching the DVD lessons for Math-U-See, and the hands-on approach was helpful for teaching borrowing and re-grouping. We still have the Math-U-See block set, and they are hands down the best manipulatives for teaching adding and subtracting!

Pros: Good for the visual and kinesthetic learner. It’s very different from other approaches, so if your child is struggling with one curriculum, it might be worth it to try Math-U-See, especially if you can borrow the parent book and DVD and just buy the student workbook stock connect morgan stanley. I like the manipulatives, because unlike cuisenaire rods, each unit is marked on the longer rods. One activity that I loved from M-U-S was building a 10’s fort. The child uses the blocks to build a tower with all of the ways to make 10 (a 2 block plus an 8 block, etc.) Very visual. The Math-U-See website has a great online drill program that you can use for free without buying their curriculum! We use it all the time.

Cons: Not comprehensive enough – does not give enough attention to time, money, and measurement. In the higher levels, the numbers get really huge. For example, instead of moving on to new material, the second grade book has students adding and subtracting 4 digit numbers (and I think it even went up to 5 digits) 1 usd to btc. This gets tedious for young children. Only one new concept is introduced per week, which was not enough for Aidan. Every workbook page is the same (not the same problems, but the same skills) for a week.

Horizons: While I was going through 2nd grade Math-U-See with Aidan and realized that it was not comprehensive enough, I started supplementing with Horizons 2nd grade because some friends had given us that curriculum. Horizons might just be my least favorite math curriculum!

Cons: The parent book was my biggest complaint. There are way too many learning objectives for each day. One or two of them would be new, and then there would be up to 5 review objectives. I felt like I couldn’t glace at the book and see what we were supposed to be learning that day, and for a busy mom, that just doesn’t work! The homework was also pretty long.

Making Math Meaningful: (from Cornerstone Curriculum) A friend introduced me to Making Math Meaningful from Cornerstone Curriculum, and I decided to give it a try. I ordered the second grade book for Aidan to use in his 2nd grade year even though we had already completed second grade Math-U-See.

**Quick Side Note: Although we started with 1st grade math in kindergarten, we did not stay a grade level ahead understanding binary. I have received advice from veteran homeschool moms to not get too ahead in math, even for “smart” kids. Even really intelligent kids are not often developmentally ready to do abstract thinking (Algebra 1) earlier than 8th grade.

Making Math Meaningful is really different from other math curriculum. Since this post is about first grade math, I’ll focus on the first grade level.

Gresham’s first lesson was about equal and not equal. He cut paper strips out of his workbook and compared the lengths to see if they were equal or not equal. He learned how the write the signs and write expressions like A (paper strip A) = D (paper strip D). (For comparison, Saxon first grade lesson one is on counting to 10.)

We did activities with pouring water to see if different containers were equal or not equal (compare a tall thin glass with a short fat one – it blows their minds at that age!). Gresham built a Duplo tower that was “equal” to his favorite toy shark:

I noticed that Gresham was starting to recognize equal and not equal in real life – “Look, this stick is equal to that stick!” After several days of practicing equal and not equal, Gresham learned about greater than and less than. For that concept, one of his activities was to play a card game. We made two sets of cards numbered 1-10. Each player would lay down a card at the same time, and would take turns placing a greater than, less than, or equal sign between the two number cards gbp vs usd exchange rate. Gresham loved it! Math is fun when it feels like a card game! He is currently learning about adding and subtracting at the same time – I’ve never seen an approach like this, and I really like it overall.

Pros: Making Math Meaningful is a bargain at $45 for both the student and parent books. I didn’t buy their manipulatives because we have such an assortment of stuff from our zillions of math programs! Making Math Meaningful teaches kids number sense, logic, and to really think. It has a lot of real life application and hands-on activities. In the upper elementary levels (Aidan is doing 4th grade right now), it is strong on teaching kids to choose the correct operation in a word problem.

Cons: MMM can be too abstract at times. Abstract thinking is a developmental thing – not an intelligence thing or an instructional thing. That being said, Aidan cried over one abstract concept in 2nd grade, but when we came back to the exact same concept in third grade, it was no problem. It is also too light on drill – I love the thinking skills, but kids need to have their math facts memorized. To remedy this, I’ve been supplementing with Rod and Staff math usd rate today. Their math is very affordable at about $15 for the student textbooks (you don’t need the parent book), and it’s good math with a classic approach. I spent about $60 total to purchase two complete 4th grade programs for Aidan, and when MMM gets too abstract or he needs more drill practice, I pull out Rod and Staff. Gresham has been doing mainly MMM, but I’m getting ready to order first grade Rod and Staff for him.

Update April 15, 2013: After using MMM for all of first grade, I really like it! It’s tough at times, but develops really good thinking skills text to binary converter. I still recommend supplementing with additional drill.

To sum up, my current plan is to use Making Math Meaningful with Rod and Staff as a supplement for both Aidan and Gresham (and Owen and Jonathan when they get old enough) through the elementary years. When we get to junior high, we’ll see where we go from there!

• If you don’t like how your curriculum presents a concept, scrap that lesson and do it your way. You’re the parent, and you know how your child learns the best!

Thanks so much for the overview. We are just now trying to work out what programme to do for our four year old son, and have been looking three of your menitoned so it was very helpful. We are new to home edding. I had wondered about the maths you see, whether their manipulatives were enough! and I guess you have answered that one. It also helped you clarifying about the abstract side of things not being a matter of intellect. So now i will check out M M M and Right Start.

I have never seen Christian Light or Life of Fred, and I really need to check those out – mainly because I’m curious! We are still liking Making Math Meaningful. In fact, I can see the value of it more and more the longer we stick with it. My oldest is just finishing 5th grade, and I feel like supplementing MMM with Rod and Staff has been especially helpful at this age because it covers much more with fractions and decimals cnn after market futures. But overall, I love MMM!

Thank you for your reviews! I just started homeschooling my kindergartener 2 months ago and have been scouring the web to figure out something for him and his sister who will be in kindergarten next year. My husband really wants us to use Singapore for lots of reasons, so we’re going to make a go of that, but I think I’ll get the MUS manipulatives to go with it and supplement with something like Rod & Staff because I read that it’s short on drill. I’m sure it probably won’t work for both of them, as I read more and more stories that most homeschool families try numerous programs.

I have been reading about 1st grade math curriculum for weeks! My head is going to explode. I’m just not sure what our son is going to like. I really appreciate the confidence you give to know I can scrap a program and try something new! We are going to start with Saxon math from the recommendation of my Aunt who has been a math tutor for almost 15 years and homeschooled 4 children. My hope is to have a base curriculum of work off of and find supplements for how our oldest and his personality. Very helpful reviews of all the curriculum

[…] Both of these games were so simple, and yet so much more engaging than filling in worksheets. We have gotten to the point where Gresham’s math book needs some supplementing. We are using Making Math Meaningful from Cornerstone Curriculum, which is a great curriculum, but it needs additional practice on the basic facts, in my opinion. (In our five years of homeschooling, we’ve been through several different math programs – you might want to check out my comparison of four different first grade maths!) […]

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