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One of the biggest challenges of homeschooling multiple children or homeschooling children with learning difficulties is never having enough of you for everyone. Everyone needs you, and some of your kids can’t get the job done without you sitting next to them checking every answer. This is especially true with a subject like math. Finding an at-home math program that allows your child to be independent, to learn without you, to be guided and corrected, and to receive basic help for their math lesson can make a huge difference to your day. of school at home. Textbook Instruction is a home math program that allows your child to learn math independently, even if they have learning difficulties.
It’s also easy to refer to lessons from the course in e-book format. Although this e-book is not printable, it allows the parent to follow what has been discussed in the course without having to watch each lesson with the child or anxiously wait for what is going to be covered.
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Teaching Manuals Math at Home lessons engage the child with fun backgrounds, encouraging stickers for each problem (similar to a gif) and helpful tips from “friends” that the child can personalise. Another great feature, especially for a child with reading difficulties, is that the whole lesson is read aloud to them: all instructions and questions are seen and heard. A man’s voice (a real person’s voice, not a digital voice) provides the instruction or asks the questions while the text flashes on the screen. Every course, every level, throughout high school has this feature. I was very impressed, as many courses only offer this for junior levels. The font used throughout the program is also a dyslexia friendly font. The folks at Teaching Textbooks have put a lot of thought into helping kids with reading challenges succeed in math.
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For many years, Teaching Textbooks used a Flash-based system to implement their lessons. With their recent update to 4.0, they moved to an app-based downloadable program rather than a flash-based streaming system. While that move wasn’t easy, the update provided a lot more options for customizable backgrounds, stickers, and friends, and also has a notepad/calculator that students can use to correctly calculate the problems on their digital device. Although the app is not yet available for tablets (we use it on my laptop), I can see this notepad is an amazing feature on a tablet, allowing the child to solve a problem with finger or stylus, rather than on a separate piece of paper. Although the new update has vulnerabilities and bugs that the company is still working on, they have already made great progress. And I have no doubt that it will be a much better experience in the long run.
Although my three children all tried the program (Grade 3, Pre-Algebra Grade 7, and Algebra Grade 9), my youngest preferred it. In the half hour we allot for math, my third-grade student could usually work through two lessons. For my older children, classes took much longer, up to 45 minutes. at one hour for a lesson. In addition, the progress of the courses is slower; there is no need to skim over material you already know or speed up questions to answer them faster. For a child who tends to rush without learning, this deliberately paced lesson could be a very useful feature.
However, my older kids struggled with this deliberate pacing. During the lecture, they repeated the answer over and over until the lesson finally gave them a place to type the answers. They reminded me of the bunny in the movie Zootopia, waiting for sloths in the DMV. Their fast ADHD brains were very frustrated that they couldn’t set their own pace.
I intentionally placed my children exactly where their grade levels are right now so that I could compare the program to what they were learning in other home math programs. The older levels (pre-algebra and algebra) looked quite similar to their setting and had great application questions that really challenged my kids. They learned about income tax, net and gross income, and quilt construction (if a square has ___ dimensions and there are that many squares in each row with a 1″ border, what is finished quilt size?)
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The third grade course is probably easier than what my child is used to, especially in the basic math facts (addition and subtraction). Teaching textbooks at third grade level covered basic single-digit addition and subtraction facts, while my son added and subtracted three-digit numbers (regrouping) and learned basic multiplication facts/ division. In other areas, however, such as geometry, the program seemed to be similar to others we’ve used. As with any new math program, be sure to take the online placement tests to get the right level for your child. But overall, I was content to start at the grade level with each of my kids and add to the curriculum where the curriculum wasn’t quite where I wanted it to be.
Since this is a complete home math program with a spiral approach (as opposed to a mastery approach), putting a child halfway through a class is really not a good idea. I tried to skim through the e-book and skip the lessons I thought my kids already knew, but it was really best to start at the beginning. It’s not a program I would recommend using as an add-on. It is designed to be a comprehensive course and should really be used as such, starting at the beginning and working your way through each lesson, even when the child is somewhat familiar with what is covered.
As with any digital program my children use, they find it very difficult to pull apart a piece of paper and solve a problem. They tend to want to figure it out in their head or guess at best. Once the teaching of textbooks is available on the tablet, I really hope the “notepad” function will help them, because they can solve the problem directly on their device rather than switching from laptop to a laptop. Although notepad is available on my laptop, it doesn’t quite provide the same functionality: my kids can’t write on my laptop with a stylus.
If you need a curriculum to help you identify and close learning gaps, or if you have a child with asynchronous math skills, a fluency-based curriculum may work better. Textbook instruction is not ideal as a supplement and is in fact not adaptable to learning gaps. It works best as a complete program, starting from the beginning and continuing.
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However, at-home math lessons are a very solid option for a comprehensive math program, especially for those who need a child to work on math with some independence. For children with learning difficulties, this program allows them to learn independently. Especially if you have an older child who really wants that independence, it’s such a blessing. You will still need to follow up to make sure the lessons are completed and your child doesn’t move on without understanding the lessons. But if your child needs to get through a lesson without you having to go through every problem or if you’re drowning in math lessons that need to be graded, textbook teaching is a great solution.
Check out the placement tests and demonstration lessons in the teaching manual. Or sign up for their free trial of 15 lessons of any level! This could be just what you need to revive your homeschool day.
Our life is creative chaos, and our homeschooling is loud, busy, fun, challenging, and wonderful. My name is Tracy and I homeschool my group of three kids with ADHD/dyslexia, finding creative ways to use their strengths to teach their weaknesses. As a homeschooler, I enjoy adapting the curriculum and making adjustments to incorporate fun hands-on projects for out-of-the-box learners. Come seek grace for the mess and mistakes, and information to pick up the pieces and do something special. Let’s grow together!
I homeschool my group of three kids with ADHD/dyslexia, finding creative ways to use their strengths to teach their weaknesses. Which means I’m constantly making adjustments to incorporate fun hands-on projects for my out-of-the-box learners.
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Get ideas and encouragement for your homeschool challenges, from curriculum and planning to ADHD/dyslexia and learning disabilities. Find the grace and knowledge to help you overcome your challenges and grow. Looking for a different approach to reading and language arts in your homeschool? This online home language arts program is perfect for struggling readers.
Although there are many reading programs for homeschoolers today, most are specifically devoted to memorization and rote practice. (Think flash cards and sentences with sight words.)
For most children,
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