Math Mammoth

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  • Reviewed on Friday, March 28, 2014
  • Grades Used: 1-3
  • Dates used: 2012-current
When I purchased this math curriculum I was a 'refugee' from "Right Start Math". I was switching mid year and needed something that was straight-forward, appealing, and student-led. We had just adopted a 12 year old non-English speaker who was at about a 2nd grade math level, and I also had an on-target 8 year old.

Both kids love this curriculum. It moves at a nice pace, is easy for the kids to do independently, gives a lot of 'thinking' skills, math-in-your-head stuff, etc. The price is amazing. Just have your kids prepared with 3-ring binders. I get 'scrap' paper from my church, and my husband brings it from home - paper that has been printed on one side and discarded. You do have to keep up with printing out the next chapter.

Faults - The answer sheet is not in the same format as the text and is a PAIN in the patootie to follow. The cumulative reviews and tests all come in different files so you have to remember to go to each one to get everything printed out and ready for your child.

Also, the facts practice is done 'ad-hoc' by the mom, is not written into the curriculum. "Now I know all you folks are the right kind of parents.." but I home school 3, one being special needs and doesn't speak English, and work part time. Plus, I'm an accountant, a list-girl. I need it spelled out for me. I'd prefer that the facts practice was written into the curriculum every day.

I supplement with speed drills every day - worksheets I get off line that all my kids do together. Every day their time improves they get a poker chips. Enough chips and they can go to the corner store and get an ice cream. They love it.


  • Reviewed on Monday, January 23, 2012
  • Grades Used: 1st-4th
  • Dates used: 2011-2012
I absolutely love this Math. I have three children. We have used Abeka, CLE, and online tutoring. This one is my clear favorite and we will stay with this one. I would still recommend CLE as a solid program--and it was hard to leave, but for my dyslexic, who also seems to suffer from dyscalculia, I found that a less spiral/more mastery approach was better. (Math Mammoth is spiral in the sense you build on your understanding and review each year, but not spiral in that you review each type of concept each day.) So, Math Mammoth works fantastically with all three of my children: one mathy child, one average, and one struggling.

Here are some of the Pros for Math Mammoth:

1) It works. My children are enjoying Math, are grasping the concepts, and can easily do the assigned amount without complaining or feeling overwhelmed. (A big difference for us)

2) There is a lot of mental Math help. Much of the teaching is how to break numbers down, round to the nearest 10, then subtract, etc. So, it is not just rote learning. Love this component to the teaching. They are understanding Math, rather than just memorizing it (though she has a great plan for memorizing as well.)

3) The way it is presented with colored borders and a few colored samples is not overly visually distracting, but keeps it from being boring.

4)I like how it is divided into sections so you can do the year in any order. If I want to take a break from multiplication and do measuring, then we can do measuring for a week, then go back. It is also easy to move a child at their own pace, whether slowed down, or quickly by skipping an unnecessary section they already know well.

5)We have seen huge success with her methods for learning addition and multiplication facts.

6)There are videos online if you want to see Maria teach some of the concepts and explain the parts she asks the parents to do.

7)I love her approach to story problems. They mix different operations, and are not "fake." The child can't just use multiplication every time. They have to think and fully understand the problem. There is a lot of practice on these.

8) You can choose the Dark Blue series to just focus on a particular area that your child struggles with instead of keeping them back a whole year and reviewing what they already know.

The Cons:

1) My mother had to take over the kids' schooling for a time and didn't like all the manipulative ideas and base 10 pictures. She preferred a more traditional approach such as just memorization.

2)It could take a lot of ink to print. (Though it was worth it, since it is so cheap and is re-usable for all the kids.)

3)No teacher's manual. (Though answers are provided, and I haven't needed any explanations yet, it may be useful for someone who struggles in Math.)

Wish it was used in the Public Schools.


  • Reviewed on Wednesday, September 7, 2011
  • Grades Used: 1st, 2nd
  • Dates used: 2011
I recommend this curriculum for occasional use especially if your child struggles with a particular concept. It is easy to download an inexpensive unit on a particular topic and work through it before jumping back into your regular curriculum.


  • Reviewed on Sunday, October 24, 2010
  • Grades Used: 1, 2, Fractions
  • Dates used: 2009-2010
Mammoth Math has been my 2nd grade son's only math curriculum. In addition, I bought Fractions and had my 6th grader work through it.

I definitely recommend Mammoth Math for the younger grades. It is not always easy, so we do 1-2 pages a day max. We used connecting cubes, a toy clock, and an abacus as manipulatives. I used to write the answers for him sometimes if he got tired, when writing was still a skill he was learning. My son has a very good understanding of the relationship between addition and subtraction, and knows his math facts without having used flashcards. We are in the section of mastering facts right now, and I do sometimes have him do mathblaster or IXL Math drills instead of on paper, just to reinforce.

Fractions was very challenging for my son. I think it was good material, but I left him to do it himself, which wasn't right. This is a curriculum that needs the parents sitting there and working with the child. Many times he called me over because he "didn't get it", and I realized he had needed me from the beginning of that unit to explain.