So – 6th grade math. Here is where we are today. A walk of faith. Resourcefulness with our Resources. One thing we have lived by during this homeschool journey, is faith. Faith that God will provide the resources when there is a need. We have received/found an eclectic assortment. Sometimes the product comes the day after a thought is born, but a prayer has not been offered. Sometimes the day before. Our experience, after nine years of trusting – is that my God, is heavily invested into this journey with me. That said,
It is not always easy. I ask for advice and people give solutions that cost hundreds of dollars. I do have a wonderful source for scholarship money for necessities, and am not shy in asking. However, I want to make sure that when I ask – it is a proven block that is needed for the wall. Not a potted plant, or an ornate addition to the wall, but a building block. So –
I realize that if I were to purchase Teaching Textbooks 6 and 7 my struggle would mostly be over. However, I’m in the middle of the year, with no younger children to pass down. Purchasing a half year’s worth seems a bit much. Same with Math U See. I think it would help, but again, mid year. We may have the opportunity to receive a MUS product in the spring – but my eyes will be on Algebra 2.
What works? Videos for the instructor. Warm up exercises. Clear exercises to practice the new skill today. A few follow up problems for memory but not every day.
I downloaded the Table of Contents for Teaching Textbooks, Horizon Math and Saxon 7/6.
Sitting on the couch last evening – made up skill categories, and placed the lesson numbers in each section.
One comment from earlier this week – “Saxon isn’t spiral – It’s ADHD.” Can you see that in the lesson topics? Order of Operations is two lessons. #5 and #84. Huh? Factors moves from 19 to 30, to 56 to 88. What? Spiral Lessons, followed up by Spiral Practice. Fractions to Capacity to Area of a Triangle to Ratio to Bisectors? No wonder we hit a wall!
In Teaching Textbooks, the lesson topics are presented as Mastery, but the practice problems are given as spiral. At least every day, one builds on yesterday.
Horizons was harder to follow. It seemed to mimic more of the Pubic School Scope and Sequence – more words than explanations. More ideas than solid skills. Very strange combinations of skills presented. But this helped me as well. After looking at the Knowledge Map for Khan, the Table of Contents for EnVisionMath (Public school book), and many others – there really isn’t a clear path for 6th grade. Each publication had different ideas of how much time to spend on topics. Some were heavy on the basic 4 – add/subtract/multiply/divide. Some heavy on Fractions/Primes/Percents. Some heavy on Geometry. Khan seemed to be the most eager to set up the 6th grader to perform Algebra 1 the next year.
I’ll stop here – and write the next post on what we will actually do with all of this information. Still there with me? Cool.
How did this work? How did you test and quiz? How did you have them do the homework?
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Math and science were always my two diffilcult ones.
then i found an awesome math program. I can’t say enough good about this free program we’ve been using! It is advanced compared to American mathematic teaching, so if you decide to look here, know you might want to look a grade up and down from where your kiddos are really at.
It’s got worksheets, but there is a free teacher’s guide, projector copies (for those who want to utilize them), and more.
It’s got a kind of Charlotte-Mason-y feel to it. Very gentle and learning-inspired, rather than fact-memorizing and testing to score feel. In fact, we’ve never run across ANY tests in this having done 3rd-5th grades with it! Hurray! Every 5th page is basically covering what has been learned the week before, so they are showing what they know without having a test – and you as the parent already know if they are getting it or not, so you don’t really need a test.
The teacher guides are AWESOME. They guide you through every 4 lessons (as the 5th page is covering what has already been learned, there are no lesson plans). They are clear that you can be as strict in following it or as loose as you want. We go with our own structure, which is some of theirs and some of my own… it works out really well. How well do they guide you through? Well, it gives down to the minute how long each section of math class should/can last. There are pauses in the younger years (counted in the minutes) for singing or calm, focused play.
BEST of all… just like the other programs you’ve been using, it’s a testing period in the beginning of using the new curriculum. You might like it, you might not… but golly, it’s free, so trying isn’t going to hurt a thing! 😉
I am so so so struggling with what to do with math for a couple of my kids… so this is great… I still haven’t decided for the 6th or 8th graders…
We aren’t to this point yet – but I’ve heard great things about Saxon!
Wow! You are searching through a lot of material.
I don’t know how you did that- but what great info you have out of it!!
Being thrifty with my resources. 😉
I found math to be one of the hardest curriculums to settle on. After much research like your doing (my kids are younger) I finally settled on A+ TutorSoft Interactive Multisensory Math. I hope you find what works best. For me I needed something that made sense not only to kids but myself. I didn’t want anything too texty. Just straight to the point.
We love Saxon, but it’s not for everyone. Hope you find what works best for your kids!