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I'm completely messed my child up in math!!!

I'm completely messed my child up in math!!!

IDK what to do. My DD has struggled in math so much. We started with Horizon's 1 and it was way too hard, we moved on to MUS alpha and I got concerned it didn't cover enough. So then we tried saxon and she hated the fact sheets so much we never ended up doing them as they took her forever and loads of tears. Though we did finish grade 2. Then we tried BJU , which was too hard for her. So we tried Singapore which didn't work at all. Then we tried TT 4 as 3 wasn't available yet and it was expecting her to know grade 3 stuff after about 15 lessons and she couldn't do it. I downloaded Math Mammoth and immediately seen it wasn't for us. So then we tried MUS and saxon again. Neither feel like a good long term fit. I thought about ACE as it's colourful and self taught as she's a visual learner. But I keep hearing how poor ACE is and I feel like I'm going to mess her up even more in math, if that's possible.

So here we are, heading into 4th and she doesn't even have her basic facts up to 9+9 solid and her subtracting is pretty bad, Which is no wonder really. What do I do, put her in 2nd grade? How will she ever catch up? Her little brother is half way through 2nd grade in McRuffys and he's only a 1st grader. IDK if I should try McRuffy's with her or if it'll go high enough as 3rd is as high as it's out. She'd be so upset to know she's where he is. I tested them both on ACE and he tested further into 2nd grade than she is.

Ok, so to recap, she's going into 4th, doesn't have her basic addition and subtraction facts down. She gets concepts, like the concept of adding and dividing, but can't remember the facts. She can do all the other 'stuff' in programs, like graphs, measurements. But stuff just doesn't seem to stick. Plus she gets freaked out if she sees too much work to do. She struggled in other subjects, but has come around in all but math and spelling. She struggled in K with everything, I was in the class. She was definantly in the 5 most struggling kids.

I've really, really messed this girl up. How do I fix is and which math do I use for her?

re: I'm completely messed my child up in math!!!

One thing I would do over the summer is to work on memorizing those facts. Do games, copy the facts, drill her, whatever it takes. I have found copywork on math facts works well for my kids. But get the facts down. That will slow her down no matter what math you choose. I know others will have a lot of suggestions as well. Two math programs I like a lot are Singapore and CLE. I use them both with different kids. I love Singapore for how effortlessly they seem to get the concepts but I found for my dd that has special needs it was too much for her so the backward spiral review in CLE is perfect. But one thing I did was force her to get her math facts down. It's so key. Do whatever it takes, offer a prize do a game or competition whatever gets her going to get the facts down and it may be something you have to keep on doing for quite some time before they become second nature to her.

I know others will have good advice but hope that helps a bit. : )

re: I'm completely messed my child up in math!!!

Okay, your dd sounds a lot like how my ds was in those grades. We tried so many maths, but we never tried ACE math, though I really wish I had tried ACE or similar mastery math program. I think it might have been "the one" that could have worked for us. You know what they say about hindsight. lol

After all those years of math frustration, I came out of that with one main conclusion.... if you do happen to find one that speaks to your child -- and you said yourself that your dd says she likes ACE -- then by all means keep her in that one. If you had to adjust her up or down in the levels, find the one that she can do without frustration, and let her do that every day that you do school. You don't want to cause undue frustration by changing her math program yet again.

But to get her past the math fact issue that she is having, stop her math program for a while, maybe through the summer, and work regularly with her on memorizing her math facts. Start with the Addition and Subtraction facts, then work into Multiplication and Division facts. Use flashcards, games (there are freebies online, as well as ones you purchase like twist and shout by leapfrog, and I'm sure there are others that I'm unaware of), and have her write the facts out on paper every day. Use a one hundred number chart sometimes for her to practice skip counting. I had one that was reproducible that I printed for ds to color with a crayon whatever skip counting we were doing that day (by three's, four's, etc... he would color the 3, 6, 9 and so on in orange, or whatever color he wanted that day). Skip counting exercises are just one way of helping them remember their facts. Let her practice every day. Oh, there is another one we used in addition to the others called, math wrap-ups. Those really work!

If she is getting the concepts, then you know it's a matter of practice until she gets the memorization worked out. I believe that learning those math facts are more than half the battle in having a child who understands math and can move forward toward higher math instruction in the upper elementary and high school years.


re: I'm completely messed my child up in math!!!

Isn't that just like us hs moms- we try to fix something that appears to be broken only to end up making things worse. Well, I'm sorry you are feeling discouraged and stressed. This makes me realize that sometimes having too many choices only confuses the issue.

First of all, it seems like you have certainly tried enough math programs to find one that fits IF finding the right fit is indeed the problem. It sounds more like you have a hesitant "Mather" on your hands and no curriculum is going to solve that. There are times in the course of homeschooling when children simply must do something against their wishes and liking. At that age working at a task outside of the child's comfort zone is threatening and discouraging. This is where you have to be sensitive and discerning - sensitive to her feelings of self-worth (for lack of a better term), and discerning to know just how hard to push her.

Sometimes when kids know that Mom will just buy another curriculum if they don't like the present one, they don't learn to perservere and reap the rewards of a job completed to the best of their ability.

As far as math goes, DON'T GO ANY FARTHER until she knows her add., subtr., mult., and div. facts VERY well! Take it from me, Missed that boat with my dd and we ended up reviewing her 8 x 7, and 5x 4. Etc. right before her GED math exam!

So, hang in there. Work on those facts in lots of fun ways and stick to the math program that brings the fewest tears. She will not thank you now for pushing her a not, but she will thank you some day!


re: I'm completely messed my child up in math!!!

First, you haven't "messed her up." You have learned a lot in this process, about both of you.

And, can I ask where you heard, "But I keep hearing how poor ACE is..."

First, you just need to get those facts down. Honestly, once you do that, the other stuff will come right along, fairly easily, too. ACE will do exactly this!!! It's gentle and very methodical - which is exactly what several dc need. (Obviously, ACE works and does a good job or it wouldn't have lasted over 40 yrs!)
I like the way Schoolaid teaches the facts. They basically use triplets and learn all the fact sentences for those 3 numbers. (So, you get this ... (11) 2 9 ... and you make 4 problems out of them. You only have to remember that these numbers go together, not 4 different problems.)

These books have worked very well for my dc. There is a nice variety of things to do in each lesson, so there isn't that "bored" feeling - at least not as much. LOL The Study Time math has only 2 pages of different problems, 4 lessons/wk w/ 1 practice page and a review lesson for the 5th day. Not a lot of extensive teaching either, but plenty of practice and/or other things to keep them fresh and not sick of the same ol' thing. You might be able to use the gr 3 book and really get those solidified.

Why can't you just use some flashcards and run through them each day? Oh, Times Tales may help, too. And, I think they have a set for Addition.


re: I'm completely messed my child up in math!!!

Hi There:
First off I do not think you messed up anything : ) many of us try for a good fit.
I have not read the other replies but would like to offer my two cents if that's okay.
Last year I found myself doing lots of math research as well, looking for that perfect fit, so I know how that feels to be up in arms and hunting for that one great math.
This year, just over the past month or two actually we have approached math in a very different way.
I'm using Robinson curriculum and the way he approaches math really appealed to me.
I stopped all math and began to use a flash card system that I put together to have both my older dd's 6.5 and 8.5 master all the facts of all 4 operations up through 12.
Once they have done that, they will either use MUS (which we have used in the past and I love though I will have them take the placement test to see where they'd place) or they will both go into Saxon 54. Either of those math choices they will be using self directed without my doing the teaching.

Interspersed with the flash cards they are using worksheets from 2 plus 2 is not 5 and Five times Five is not 10 on days when I want to give them a sheet of math to go over.
I have what we are doing for flash cards here if you wanted to check it out:

Best of luck to you.

re: I'm completely messed my child up in math!!!

I agree that she needs to get her facts down, or any math will frustrate her.
My oldest dd didn't know her facts well. Some, but not well, so switching to BJU in 3rd *did* help us, as that's what the first few chapters are all about.
But I can see the frustration if she's not learned them well, and I can see how that can easily happen. It happened to us w/ ABeka because it moved faster than *we* needed -- plus I didn't do all the TM said w/ the drills and everything. Hard to do when you have younger dc, plus it can be demanding to do everything the TM says. =( ugh.
ABeka is a great curriculum! I grew up w/ it. The math just didn't work for us, although it probably would work for one of my dc, but not the other 2.

Not sure when you will work on multiplication with her, but after she has begun to understand and learn them, a good online free game (best free game I've ever seen IMO), is Timez Attack.
It has great graphics, and will review if she misses facts.

I agree w/ the Times Tales, as well. We used those w/ ds and then moved on to Timez Attack. They both really helped him a lot.

Marty =)
(formerly HSfromthestart)

re: I'm completely messed my child up in math!!!

I know a lot of posters mentioned memorizing facts. But, I guess what I would do, because you also want to help her "make up time" is not worry about memorizing the addition and subtraction facts. I know that sounds bad, but really when you think about it, those could just be quickly counted up in your head.

I would just make sure she can add and subtract three digit numbers on paper, see if she can figure them out. Teach her how to re-group and borrow.

Then start your focus on memorizing the multiplication facts...and go from there.

Not saying that's the perfectly right thing to do...just saying what I would probably do.


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