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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Our 2015-2016 Homeschool Year Part 5

Our 2015-2016 homeschool year is now officially complete!

What a blessed, busy, and productive school year we have had!

Having quite successfully completed our 5th year of homeschooling, I thought it would be neat to do a series of posts looking back over our year!

Be sure to read the previous posts in this series:

Part 1 - Spelling
Part 2 - English
Part 3 - History
Part 4 - Science

In today's post, let's talk about

Math

I cannot say enough wonderful things about Rod & Staff's math curriculum! It is simple, thorough, mastery based, and it just works! Big Brother is very confident in his math skills, and I am so happy he is getting a solid foundation in math. He knows his facts and he knows how to use them to solve real life problems.



Last year I wrote a post called Why We Love Rod & Staff Math if you would like to check that out!

This year in the textbook I alternated having him complete all the even rows for one lesson and all the odd rows for the next. This worked out extremely well. It gave him just enough practice each day to gain mastery but did not needlessly overwhelm him with too much work at once.

At this level with R&S, the student is expected to copy the problems from his textbook and complete the lessons on separate paper. For the first half of the year, I had Big Brother do this part all on his own. However, it did get to be a challenge for him since he really struggles with focus issues and tends to "zone out" sometimes. So many days I would sit with him and we would take turns. I would copy down a problem into his notebook, then he would write the answer. This really cut his assignment completion time way down, and it helped him stay focussed on math throughout the lesson. It took a lot of the pressure off of having to concentrate so hard on staying on task, and he was able to actually just focus on the math.

Near the end of the year, I started copying down most of the next day's problems into his notebook for him the night before so he could work a bit more independently.

The accompanying workbook also gave him extra practice in things not necessarily covered in the textbook like counting money, measuring, adding/subtracting fractions, and rounding. I assigned him just enough work from this book each day to make sure he was able to master these concepts as well. Since he wasn't having to copy the problems, he was able to complete this part of his math assignments more independently.

The teacher's manual has simple plans for daily drills, teaching, and board work. We enjoyed this part of each day's math lesson very much. I like that before Big Brother encountered any new concepts or facts in his textbook, we had already covered it during our teaching time together.

For some fun math practice, we made up our own Multiplication Go Fish game using index cards. We also used Multiplication Learning Wrap-ups!Check out the blog post I wrote about these here.

Big Brother is really doing well in math, and we plan to continue using Rod & Staff as our main math curriculum since it is working so well!

You won't want to miss my next post which will be looking back at Little Brother and his Tot Schooling this year!

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