When you hear the word math what comes to mind? Something painful, frustrating, and confusing perhaps? My children feel the same way when they see a math worksheet. They like what I call “living math.” Living math is easy to understand because children can see examples of it in their everyday life.
What is Math-U-See
Our daily math lessons have become my daughters’ favorite part of their homeschooling day. With Math-U-See, learning new math concepts is easy because my children visualize the problems and concepts with manipulative blocks. The dvd lessons also provide teaching support and reinforce the concepts in each section of the workbook. This takes tons of pressure off of me to explain new material.
Each Math-U-See program has 2 sets; an instruction pack and student pack. The instruction pack comes with a teacher’s manual and instructional dvd. The student pack comes with a workbook and tests. The manipulative blocks are separate, but essential to the curriculum, and you only have to purchase those once.
If your child is in preschool, you will want to start with the very first level called Primer. This will introduce your child to basics of mathematics including counting, number recognition, place value, and basic addition and subtraction.
If you are unsure about what level your child is at there is a simple online assessment. My youngest daughter is 5 and assessed at the Beta level. My eldest daughter is 7 and assessed at the Gamma level. I choose the Beta level to review because both my daughters could use it. My youngest would be learning new concepts and my eldest would be strengthening her skills. However, I plan to get Gamma for my eldest daughter next year!
The BEST Thing about Math-U-See
The first thing we do with every math lesson is to get out our blocks and review the previous lesson. ALL my kids LOVE the blocks. Just playing with them teaches basic skills like patterning, sequencing, and value recognition. The combination of the instructional dvd and blocks really make this curriculum different from all the rest.
Homeschool dad and teacher, Steve Demme, does an amazing job connecting all of the concepts in this program to real life while using the blocks so children can actually SEE the problem being solved. You can view samples of his instruction on the Math-U-See website.
In the first lesson, my children learned about place value. Mr. Demme explained it by drawing a road he calls decimal street. What a great idea! Each house has a different family (units, tens, hundreds, ect.) and the houses are only so big, so if a house gets too many units in it, someone has to move over to the next house. Check out the explanation for yourself below!
That is just one example, but Mr. Demme has lots of other great methods to explain confusing concepts to young children.
Another great new feature, is the Math-U-See Manipulatives App. It is a virtual version of the physical manipulatives so children can practice what they’ve learned while on the go.
There are so many great benefits to the program, but my favorite part is seeing the smiles on my daughter’s faces when they solve a problem correctly. My eldest quickly solved a triple digit addition equation mentally after practicing with her blocks. My jaw dropped, I was just so surprised! Math brings joy to my children which means they are learning to love learning; a priceless gift!
One lucky True Aim reading will win a Math-U-See curriculum of their choice!