For those who homeschool, picking a maths curriculum is a very big decision
Parents and teachers alike do all of the necessary research, they consider all of their options, and somehow make their decision. Then, for whatever reason, they start to think twice. Whether or not you’re new to homeschooling, it’s not uncommon to interrogate your choice of maths program. Being flexible is one of many benefits of homeschooling. If you find that your current maths program is not working, it may be time for a change.
”Whether or not you’re new to homeschooling, it’s not uncommon to interrogate your choice of maths program. Being flexible is one of many benefits of homeschooling.”
It's important to remember that. YOU have the choice.
And, your kids can inform that choice. Ask them if they are understanding what they are learning, if they are enjoying it, if they feel they are progressing well.
My kids were always the real test to any program we purchased. If they didn't like, into the trash bin it goes. I'm not going to force them to do something they don't want to do.
Here are 6 clear signs that your program is NOT working:
1. It's Too Hard
Your student is beginning to dislike maths because of this curriculum. They are struggling everyday to remember the bit they learned the day prior. Perhaps the curriculum is going too fast, or maybe too much of their school day is spent doing maths. At this point, you have attempted to do everything you could and both you and your student are feeling disheartened. Maths can be a struggle!
2. It's Too Easy
In comparison, this may not seem that bad. However, if your student feels that they are not being challenged, this is another easy way for them to tune maths out. If your student does not love learning, or at least fee challenged by what they are learning, they are more likely to be agitated and will stop paying attention. Does your student rush through the maths problems on a consistent basis? With no pause to think through what the question is asking of them? It may be time for them to advance to the next curriculum, as they may have developed the necessary skills to handle more challenging work.
The Math-U-See program makes sure each student begins exactly where they are at, through the use of the Online Placement Test. This free diagnostic test determines exactly what you student knows - and what they have missed.
3. It Doesn’t Equip Parents with Proper Tools for Teaching
If your maths curriculum isn't making any sense to your student and its hard to teach, there's no point trying to force it! It's also hard when the maths lessons are different from the way you learnt it at school, so you can't teach it to your student with confidence.
So, make sure you find a maths curriculum that is easy for YOU to teach, as well as easy for your student to understand.
4. There’s Too Much Material
It is very easy to get overwhelmed, both as the instructor and the student, if there is too much information/work to absorb. Parents may feel the need to use all material as a way to ensure that we are getting all that we paid for, but no one benefits from overworking a student who has already mastered the material.
Therefore, it's important to take the Online Placement Test to first see where your student is at. Then you know where to start and what to teach, specific to each student.
Also, the Math-U-See program provides step-by-step instructions and worked solutions for each lesson, so you don't need to have any prior experience to teach maths!
5. There’s Too Much Teacher Prep Time
We should most certainly put in effort to teach our students. However, most of us need a curriculum where a good bulk of the groundwork has already been done. If we are required to spend too much time creating lessons, crafting materials for activities, or practicing the concepts ourselves, it can take time from making the class more enjoyable. Which leads us to our final point . . .
6. Nobody Is Having Any Fun!
Maths may not be the most fun thing in the world, but it should be just as enjoyable as it is challenging. If either of you find that you are not looking forward to maths everyday, something is not right. Throughout the Math-U-See program, games, activities and even maths songs are part of the curriculum - as well as plenty of student practice and end-of-lesson tests. It's important to have fun and also make sure your student has mastered the topic before moving on.
If you found that any of the above issues related to you or your student, you can take our free Online Placement Test here:
The Team at Maths Australia