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math & other "failures?" for lack of better word... ((super long)) **ETA: in green**

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My eldest is seriously smart.... at least she used to be.   I think she still is. However, as a muscle atrophes when you don't use it, I think the brain does, too.

We did k-12 when she was 5.   Wasn't serious about HSing then, but we lived in a bad school district.

Moved six months later (at 5 1/2) and put her in public school.   The school felt she needed to go to first grade (not kindy) because of how advanced she was.   Totally not my suggestion... all led by the school.

She liked it at first, but quickly turned sour.   She ended up with very little friends, picked on, etc... major social issues that had her talking about dying and going to heaven all the time.  As those early years moved on, she got worse and worse and started shutting down into books and ignoring pretty much everyone.  Refusing to do work, refusing to do anything.   

FFWD... we pulled her out after third grade started over with the same issues.  ((She was a grade ahead, remember... so should have been a second grader.))

We popped her on time4learning.com, which she liked for about a month and then it was like pulling teeth.  She kept scoring really low on everything that didn't involve stories and make believe.... (just skipping and not doing the work.)

 Ok, so following year, we tried Saxon.   This would have been her third grade year (by age cut off of the school districts).   She tested successfully into Saxon 6/5.    So we, thinking maybe her probs is partly due to boredom and being held back... let her do 6/5.

She did swimmingly well... for about a month....  then it became gruelling...   She'd do great in front of me, but if I left her to do a couple problems (not even a bunch, but just a couple)... she would pick at her lips or draw circles in the air.   Complete refusal to do the work.

So, the following year, we decided to do 6th grade Rod and Staff.   Even though the Saxon was actually more advanced, I thought Rod & Staff would lay a better foundation of setting up the problems and writing them out more consistantly.   Yeah... lasted about a month.   She got bored.

During that year, I lose a baby, relocate once, get pregnant and relocate again the next year.

So that next year, with new baby, I decided to go back to time 4 learning and supplement english and library books.   I put her on their 6th grade math and tell her that if it's too easy, we'll change it to 7th grade.   This is technically her third year in the 6th grade math, just different curriculums.

Yeah... they did the work this year... but my daughter kept hitting the arrows to skip without listening to stuff.  She didn't pay attention to it, and therefore retained pretty much nothing.

FINALLY, we come to this year.   I threw my hands up and decided to pay for a curriculum that might work.

We pick Math U See.   Terrific curriculum.   I love it and it's working for my second oldest.   Seems to be working for her during the easy first several lessons.   She is doing Zeta, which is about sixth grade level.   Ok, fine... so we've done something in the sixth grade level for four years.  However, she is now the age of a sixth grader, so I'm ok with that.  She's still not behind.

Ok, MUS lessons are getting where they are still very easy (comprehension wise)... but she actually has to write out some problems and do the work... woe is me... we are back to pulling teeth again.


Here's my issue.  I don't want her in the habit of taking 3-5 hours every day to get about 1 hours worth of work out of her.    BUT... that being said, she has a 97% average in the class so far.   And I don't let her fix it for a better grade.  She gets the grade she gets.   Out of all the errors she HAS made... none of them have been over not understanding... but of not paying attention.   She will not put in the decimal, not write the "word" part of the answer for a story problem, she will just up and forget to borrow from the other number, transpose numbers in her head, etc...   She just really doesn't care about her work.

So... what is your opinion ladies?  she obviously KNOWS the work.   However, I'm concerned about moving into algebra and higher maths if she cannot work it out on paper.    

I guess what I'm asking is, would you start having deadlines or giving her zeros?  Or is that too much?  Because she will honestly get a zero every day.    Or, let her just keep being slow and miss a lot of other things in her life?


***EDITED TO ADD***

Thank you ladies!!! I am feeling a LOT better about this and have a plan of action.   I think I'm going to let her do the following with MUS Zeta:

1.  Watch video.   

2.  Complete the Final application and enrichment page (neat page that usually has extra concepts and ways to apply math).

3.  THE NEXT DAY: (to show retention of stuff learned) take test.   If showing confusion on any portion of the test, or if score under a 90% on the test, then the child will go back and do the work they skipped.

I think the kids will be elated, and with not sitting at the table pouring over math (needlessly?) for those extra hours, we will have more time to LIVE and learn other stuff.



 






by on Sep. 25, 2013 at 7:55 PM
Replies (11-20):
KrissyKC
by Silver Member on Sep. 25, 2013 at 11:23 PM

Very awesome advice... thank you!

I really have no clue figuring out how she learns best in regards to math.   I'm not sure which approach works best, because she actually LEARNS it VERY quickly.   It's just a matter of getting her to go from learning and knowing into DOING.

Yes, I asked what she wanted out of a Math Program.  Her answer?  No work.   She seems to actually not mind the Math U See approach.  

Since she's doing sixth grade again, (and honestly, we almost did pre-algebra instead of Zeta), I like the idea of testing out of the work.   However, since we want her to start paying attention to the details and accuracy, maybe I should say the test has to be 100% perfect to test out of the work.   Would that be asking too much?  Or at least 95% or above. 

If she did that, I bet I'd be having to buy algebra curriculum by Christmas.    Hey, I could even make it a present!!!   LOL!!!   Just kidding!



Quoting AutymsMommy:

Have you assessed HOW she best learns math? All of the curricula you listed has an entirely different approach/method: Saxon is spiral, dry, and grueling (we hate it here), the others you listed are "mastery". Does she need consistent review, moving very incrementally, or does she learn best with mastery - mastering one skill area in math completely before moving on to the next topic, with little review of previously learned concepts/skills?

Have you asked her what SHE wants out of a math program? Does she want color, small books or one big text, etc.

Finally, I might suggest striking a deal with the kid. Allow her to test out of chapters/sections. If she can pass the end of chapter/section test, she doesn't have to do the chapter. The benefit is two-fold; it would make her feel in control of her education (VERY important as you reach these upper years - SHE needs to own this!)... and it would allow you to sincerely see where she is in math. Once she finally hits a roadblock, let her do her math at the whiteboard, or type it on the computer, or do it WITH you (do not sic a hormonal preteen on her own math work; not when she's already unmotivated about it, lol; that's asking for trouble).

She DOES need to work things out on paper, but I wouldn't push writing out entire problems right now. She needs to enjoy math first. She sounds naturally advanced in the subject - she just lost her zest for it (joy for it) somewhere along the way. I do agree that before hitting algebra, she needs to write things out... but if she has ANY learning differences (i.e. dyslexia, working memory issues) she may not be able to without significant help. Sometimes *these* children see things in a different way than we do, or even automatically, without KNOWING how to work the problem or HOW they got that answer. My daughter was infamous for it <---- big picture thinker; she would look at a problem, spout off the answer... when I asked her to show me how, she would trip up, not know how to put it on paper, and then end up with the WRONG answer. Lol.

Finally. Bake some brownies with the kid and let her get crumbs on her math work. Brownies fix EVERYTHING.

ETA: Have you looked at Math Mammoth? She could pick her own "topics" since it's a mastery program. In other words, she can say "I want to do division today!" or "I'd like to learn about negative numbers today!" <---- the chapters do not build on each other really. It's very "topical".



PurpleCupcake
by Cynthia on Sep. 26, 2013 at 8:09 AM

Just my opinion...and I could be wrong...but she sounds like a gifted child. Teaching gifted children is much different from teaching the average child. 

Do you think she may be gifted?

Christie1952
by on Sep. 26, 2013 at 6:06 PM

Try a different way of teaching the lesson. White board, hands on etc.

KrissyKC
by Silver Member on Sep. 26, 2013 at 7:56 PM

Thank you so much for your suggestion.   I'm concerned, though, that it won't help her sit down and "put it on paper" to learn it through video games either.   However, I think that might be a terrific supplement.  I'll look it up soon and see if she would enjoy that.



Quoting usmom3:

 I cut & pasted this from the OP "So... what is your opinion ladies?  she obviously KNOWS the work.   However, I'm concerned about moving into algebra and higher maths if she cannot work it out on paper."

  She says she knows the information but doesn't like to work things out on paper wouldn't something like Dragonbox be great for her if she likes video games?

Quoting AutymsMommy:


I think Krissy is saying that she isn't ready for algebra yet - that she's worried about her moving into algebra without having really retained the necessary foundation in arithmetic.

Quoting usmom3:

 Dose she like video games? There is an app that teaches algebra in a fun video game I don't remember what it is called but I know a lot of homeschoolers & unschoolers use it for their children.



 



KrissyKC
by Silver Member on Sep. 26, 2013 at 7:59 PM

She very much might be.   I've read somewhere that mentally gifted kids can have serious issues in other areas of their life and development, and she definately fits that.   This poor child can struggle very hard socially and in other areas (I'll protect her privacy and not get into those)...



Quoting PurpleCupcake:

Just my opinion...and I could be wrong...but she sounds like a gifted child. Teaching gifted children is much different from teaching the average child. 

Do you think she may be gifted?



usmom3
by BJ on Sep. 26, 2013 at 8:08 PM

 Why is it so important for her to put it on paper if she knows it? If it is to prove to you that she knows it isn't it enough for her to get the answers right?

 

Quoting KrissyKC:

Thank you so much for your suggestion.   I'm concerned, though, that it won't help her sit down and "put it on paper" to learn it through video games either.   However, I think that might be a terrific supplement.  I'll look it up soon and see if she would enjoy that.

 

 

Quoting usmom3:

 I cut & pasted this from the OP "So... what is your opinion ladies?  she obviously KNOWS the work.   However, I'm concerned about moving into algebra and higher maths if she cannot work it out on paper."

  She says she knows the information but doesn't like to work things out on paper wouldn't something like Dragonbox be great for her if she likes video games?

Quoting AutymsMommy:

 

I think Krissy is saying that she isn't ready for algebra yet - that she's worried about her moving into algebra without having really retained the necessary foundation in arithmetic.

Quoting usmom3:

 Dose she like video games? There is an app that teaches algebra in a fun video game I don't remember what it is called but I know a lot of homeschoolers & unschoolers use it for their children.

 

 

 

 

 

 

KrissyKC
by Silver Member on Sep. 26, 2013 at 10:15 PM

She is leaning toward a very mathematical or science based career.   Yes, she does have to be able to put it on paper.   She will need to do much more complex things in the upcoming years.

There were a few years recently she wanted to be a forensic accountant.  Then she switched to "something" to do with forensics..   then she leaned toward biology or some type of scientist.   She is extremely smart... brialliant even..   I just want to equip her for college and whatever direction she wants her life to go.    We use a multimedia approach, but a constant video game approach isn't the only thing that her Dad and I feel she needs.



Quoting usmom3:

 Why is it so important for her to put it on paper if she knows it? If it is to prove to you that she knows it isn't it enough for her to get the answers right?

 

Quoting KrissyKC:

Thank you so much for your suggestion.   I'm concerned, though, that it won't help her sit down and "put it on paper" to learn it through video games either.   However, I think that might be a terrific supplement.  I'll look it up soon and see if she would enjoy that.



Quoting usmom3:

 I cut & pasted this from the OP "So... what is your opinion ladies?  she obviously KNOWS the work.   However, I'm concerned about moving into algebra and higher maths if she cannot work it out on paper."

  She says she knows the information but doesn't like to work things out on paper wouldn't something like Dragonbox be great for her if she likes video games?

Quoting AutymsMommy:


I think Krissy is saying that she isn't ready for algebra yet - that she's worried about her moving into algebra without having really retained the necessary foundation in arithmetic.

Quoting usmom3:

 Dose she like video games? There is an app that teaches algebra in a fun video game I don't remember what it is called but I know a lot of homeschoolers & unschoolers use it for their children.



 



 



usmom3
by BJ on Sep. 26, 2013 at 10:34 PM

 Then I think it would be time for a talk with her about how it is part of her career choice that she needs to get used to or she needs to think of another career she wants to do if she hates showing her work so much!

Quoting KrissyKC:

She is leaning toward a very mathematical or science based career.   Yes, she does have to be able to put it on paper.   She will need to do much more complex things in the upcoming years.

There were a few years recently she wanted to be a forensic accountant.  Then she switched to "something" to do with forensics..   then she leaned toward biology or some type of scientist.   She is extremely smart... brialliant even..   I just want to equip her for college and whatever direction she wants her life to go.    We use a multimedia approach, but a constant video game approach isn't the only thing that her Dad and I feel she needs.

 

 

Quoting usmom3:

 Why is it so important for her to put it on paper if she knows it? If it is to prove to you that she knows it isn't it enough for her to get the answers right?

 

Quoting KrissyKC:

Thank you so much for your suggestion.   I'm concerned, though, that it won't help her sit down and "put it on paper" to learn it through video games either.   However, I think that might be a terrific supplement.  I'll look it up soon and see if she would enjoy that.

 

 

Quoting usmom3:

 I cut & pasted this from the OP "So... what is your opinion ladies?  she obviously KNOWS the work.   However, I'm concerned about moving into algebra and higher maths if she cannot work it out on paper."

  She says she knows the information but doesn't like to work things out on paper wouldn't something like Dragonbox be great for her if she likes video games?

Quoting AutymsMommy:

 

I think Krissy is saying that she isn't ready for algebra yet - that she's worried about her moving into algebra without having really retained the necessary foundation in arithmetic.

Quoting usmom3:

 Dose she like video games? There is an app that teaches algebra in a fun video game I don't remember what it is called but I know a lot of homeschoolers & unschoolers use it for their children.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

PurpleCupcake
by Cynthia on Sep. 27, 2013 at 7:12 AM

Ok..I'll be honest here. I was a gifted child...and let me tell you if my learn environment wasn't right, I would much rather shut down and do my own thing. 

Here are some signs if gifted kids

  • express curiosity about many things
  • ask thoughtful questions
  • have extensive vocabularies and use complex sentence structure
  • are able to express themselves well
  • solve problems in unique ways
  • have good memories
  • exhibit unusual talent in art, music, or creative dramatics
  • exhibit especially original imaginations
  • use previously learned things in new contexts
  • are unusually able to order things in logical sequence
  • discuss and elaborate on ideas
  • are fast learners
  • desire to work independently and take initiative
  • exhibit wit and humor
  • have sustained attention spans and are willing to persist on challenging tasks
  • are very observant
  • show talent in making up stories and telling them
  • are interested in reading.


Does any of that fit your kid?

Quoting KrissyKC:

She very much might be.   I've read somewhere that mentally gifted kids can have serious issues in other areas of their life and development, and she definately fits that.   This poor child can struggle very hard socially and in other areas (I'll protect her privacy and not get into those)...



Quoting PurpleCupcake:

Just my opinion...and I could be wrong...but she sounds like a gifted child. Teaching gifted children is much different from teaching the average child. 

Do you think she may be gifted?




Mommynay2
by Bronze Member on Sep. 27, 2013 at 1:32 PM

Math is Destinay's weak subject, and she hates it, so I tell her if she does what she is supposed to do the first time, which I know she knows so we can get through Math quicker. I also try to give a fun activity right after she is done.

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