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Thread: choices between Math curriculum

  1. #1
    We are looking to switch from K-12 Math to either Saxon, Singapore or Math U See. What are pros and cons of each of these?

    Our favorite part of K-12 is the spiraled learning approach (review at beginning of each lesson of previous material). Our least favorite part is the cost, which is why we're moving away.

    "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world"
    -- God through Paul to the church in Rome

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Central Texas
    We use Math U See and have been very pleased with it. I have taught 4 years of the program (Gamma, Delta, Epsilon, and Algebra 2). The videos are not exciting or anything but are well done in terms of content. The kids "get it" because topics are covered in a methodical way that explains the WHY not just the how. The blocks are great too, especailly for the kinestetic and visual learners.
    Homeschool Parents to:
    Kaitlyn (10)
    Brynalise (9)
    Caleb (6)
    Ian (4)

  3. #3
    We are using Singapore Math. So far I really like it. You can buy supplementary books to review with - that's what I'm doing. The yearly cost is about $85. That covers teacher manuals, textbooks, workbooks and intensive practice workbooks.

    I chose it because it too teaches the why. Singapore students score highest in the world in math. I also like the price. However you might really miss the built in review. It does move pretty quickly without much review.

    I think Saxon has a spiraled approach for a very similar cost. I have heard some complaints that Saxon has so much review that it moves too slowly. I believe this gets better after their third grade math. I don't know much about Math U See but I think all three are pretty solid programs.
    Mom to 5 kiddos age 2-9

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    I absolutely love Singapore. Last year my 12 yo, 6th grader took the AMC 8 a national math test for 8th graders. Imagine my surprise when I learned he scored better than the average 8th grader taking the test. That's the power of Singapore. As Tracy notes above they score with the best in the world, but more important to me the top 40% of Singapore students score in the top 5% of the world which means their program takes average students and raises them to the level of gifted students.

  5. #5
    We have used Math U See for a few years now. we have used levels Primer thru pre algebra. This is my favorite math. But it does have some con's as all math's do. I love that the kids are learning the why to math not just how to do a problem. He uses a different approach to teach math problems and most of the time this works great but sometimes it confuses my kids. That doesn't happen too often. I would still choose this math over any other. We used Saxon math for a while. I really enjoyed the younger grades (up to 4th grade) It seemed in year 5 that concepts were being introduced too fast without a chance to master them. My daughter was learning a new concept every day and expected to remember it. Math U See does not move on until the child has mastered a skill and then builds on that skill. I am rambling but I hope this helps.
    Mom of four -Training the hearts of Sara, Hannah, Grace, and Silas for the Lord.

  6. #6
    MathUSee is our all time favorite. In addition to what has already been said, my kids enjoy the on-line Math Drills. I like knowing I can print off extra worksheets if they need more. It is also easy to re-sell. Check it out on-line

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Lancaster County, PA
    Sorry to bring in another choice but when we switched from K-12 math 4 years ago, we went to Horizons. It has been the perfect fit since it uses the spiral approach, just the right number of problems to work daily, has color workbooks, makes use of manipulatives, has lots of puzzles, games, etc. built in, plus includes something from Scripture frequently.

    However, it only goes through 6th grade. I've been agonizing over what to use next year when my eldest will be in 7th grade. Nothing I've seen yet has hit that "just right" balance of things that have worked in our house.

    "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2008
    New Jersey (south)
    We use Saxon for our oldest and he excels with that program. However, it did not work well for our 9 yr-old and it showed in his attitude toward the subject and on his standardized test scores. The excessive review made the material far too dry for him. So, we switched to a combination of Math U See and Singapore Math last year. What a difference! Not only does he actually enjoy math more, but he answered ALL the math questions on the 3rd grade standardized test correctly!!

    So, I think it just depends on your student. Give one a try and if it doesn't work, then you can always change it

  9. #9
    I'll throw in my two-cents worth, too.
    We use MathUSee through pre-algebra or algebra & then move on to Teaching Textbooks.
    MathUSee has really helped my 2 (9 & 13 yo) grasp the why & how of math. One thing to be aware of: at some levels, they may not score as high on the standardized tests because MathUSee tends to cover ALL of multiplication 1 year, ALL of division another, & ALL of fractions another. I have no problem with this, because the kids have a solid foundation & scores level out or excel at around the 6th grade level, since they've been exposed to each concept by that time.
    Teaching Textbooks takes a very conversational approach & has worked well with our 13 yo, who is now in Algebra I. They also offer CDs that work out ea. problem individually, so if it's been YEARS since you've done algebra or trig., it's pretty easy (as a mom)to pick it back up.

  10. #10
    Thanks everyone for the suggestions! We are heading to a big convention in April and are planning to dive into Saxon, Singapore, MUS, Teaching Textbooks, and Horizons.

    "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world"
    -- God through Paul to the church in Rome

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