Math-U-See

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Alyeska

  • Reviewed on Sunday, April 6, 2014
  • Grades Used: Pre-Algebra-Algebra
  • Dates used: 2012-2014
My dd has struggled with math for years. We attempted to use the old version of MUS when she was in 3rd grade but it did not have enough review for her.

After having used the new pre-algebra and algebra, she is retaining and excelling. We plan on continuing with MUS through high school.

Also, my ds is currently in Gamma and is doing very well. The revised version of MUS contains just the right amount of review to help retain information without being overwhelming.

This math just works! It is mastery, the lessons are short, and Mr. Demme teaches in a way that kids understand. I also appreciate the cost. It is very competitively priced and the teacher's books and DVD's have great resale value.

melanie.newlife

  • Reviewed on Thursday, April 3, 2014
  • Grades Used: K
  • Dates used: 2013-2014
We are using Math-U-See Primer and my son is so excited to do math everyday! We have had nothing but positive experiences with Math-U-See. I want to respond to some of the criticisms others have had.

First, some have complained that it relies heavily on manipulatives and should be more abstract. This may be a legitimite complaint for middle and high school, but for elementary students math NEEDS to be concrete because they are not developmentally ready for the abstract. One of the things my son loves about the curriculum is "playing" with the bars. He now, at the end of kindergarten, can already do many of the problems without the bars, but he thinks it is fun to "check" his answers with them. He also loves all the games you can play with the bars. His favorite is "Race You to One Hundred."

Second, some have complained about the memorization. Again, the elementary years are the time for this because kids are like sponges at this age. Memorizing skip counting and addition facts can help them greatly later on. It is laying a foundation.

Both of these issues are addressed in the book The Well Trained Mind. I know some people disagree with the classical method, so if you are one of them, Math U See may not be for you.

I know some people wish Math U See were more spiral, like
Saxon math, but that is why my husband and I like Math U See as opposed to Saxon. My husband has taught math to homeschool teens for the past 4 year, and the first two he used Saxon. He told me in no uncertain terms that I was NOT to use a spiral curriculum. He feels math should build on itself, not constantly repeat. My husband does math with our son sometimes, and also gives Math U See high reviews. The only thing my husband disagreed with was the suggestion to say onety-one, onety-two, etc. instead of 11,12, etc. He saw the point that it can help kids understand place value but didn't want to confuse our son with silly names for the numbers that aren't even real.

Some said they and their kids hated the songs. My son loves them - when we sing them ourselves, that is. For some reason, he doesn't like the cd version. Maybe they are too fast? So we listen to the CD once to learn the song (I am not musical AT ALL), and then just sing it ourselves. I am a Christian, but I opted for the science and literature songs. The Christian ones seemed too difficult to sing. I think they were trying too hard to get something Christian into the curriculum.

Finally, we have had no problem with the quality of the Primer workbook. It has held up great all year.

I also bought my teacher book used and it did not come with the DVD. I haven't missed it.

marie543

  • Reviewed on Monday, September 9, 2013
  • Grades Used: Primer-Pre-Algebra
  • Dates used: 2009-2013
After checking out math u see from my homeschool assistance program for several years, I decided to invest in purchasing my own copies this year because there were new editions (2013).

However, I am disappointed with the quality of the paper in the workbooks. The new enrichment pages (that were part of their selling point for a new edition) are see-thru and therefore the coloring and other activities in the second-grade-level book are useful only on one side as any colors show through and even pencil and the printed info is visible.

I find it distracting and disappointing as I feel I trusted math u see as a Christian company. I would like to see them succeed, but feel that cutting such corners is not honorable or doing the best by kids.

kinesiol

  • Reviewed on Saturday, August 24, 2013
  • Grades Used: 1st - 5th grade
  • Dates used: 2010-2013
DO NOT GET MATH U SEE!

Except for the blocks, which are excellent, do not use this curriculum. It is awful, once you get up to 3rd grade, and gets worse from there.

It is so bad that I almost wonder if the creator of this is part of the "Deliberate Dumbing Down of America" program (see http://www.deliberatedumbingdown.com - written by a woman who worked for the Reagan administration).

To learn maths a child needs lots of practice, in lots of different ways of using numbers, in slowly increasing complexity. Plus you must teach easy division soon after easy multiplication, as the two reinforce each other. Plus there are lots of little things that should be taught and explained fairly early on , because they reinforce each other (eg money, decimals).

This guy does not do this. And he does NOT do what he said he would do - there is very little revision, if any, and SO MUCH is left out.

Plus there are newfangled ways of learning multiplication which are ridiculous. And the child totally forgets all the previous stuff they learned. And he throws really tough words and concepts in to really small children. On purpose? Maybe. Read this article on the 4 barriers to learning:

http://relfe.com/2013-2020/learning_theory_children_adults_disabilities.html

and as you get more and more into mathusee you will see that he violates these rules over and over again.

And also read this article, "55 reasons why you should homeschool"
http://relfe.com/2013-2020/why_how_homeschool_what_is_home_schooling.html

Stick with Saxon math. I had my son doing mostly mathusee plus a little saxon. I could not understand why we were having so many problems, since I know that my son is very smart. Maths is EASY! If it is not, the curriculum and teaching is wrong.

By 5th grade I threw out the mathusee and did only saxon, getting him to read the brilliant introduction to each lesson, out aloud to me. Now that we have been doing saxon for a month, he is getting marks in the 90s, which is what should have been the case all along, and is now begining to enjoy maths, which is the way it should be. Only NOW has he realized that "math is easy!".

ALL THE CONFUSION IS GONE. Get the mathusee blocks and Saxon curriculum. The early books may look great - but that it just to sucker you in.
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