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A beka vs. Saxon math

Posted by on Sep. 23, 2010 at 6:19 PM
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Hi, I was wondering if anyone if familiar with both Abeka Arithmetic and Saxon Math. What is your preference? Why? What are the main differences between the two. We have been using Abeka since the 2nd grade (now in 6th). I'm happy with it, buy my dd is not.

by on Sep. 23, 2010 at 6:19 PM
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by Guidance on Sep. 23, 2010 at 6:23 PM

We used Saxon K Math and I have also purchased Saxon 1 Math for my son to begin in January.  It works very well for him.  However, he is pretty advanced in math and I feel like we skipped 3/4 of the K book because he already knew the material.  I have heard that a lot about the K book though, so I'm hoping 1 will be better.  I have never used Abeka, sorry!

Erin's Homeschooling Blog:

by on Sep. 23, 2010 at 6:32 PM

Just a heads up, if your dd likes pictures and color, Saxon are mostly black and white books.  They also have a lot of review questions.  That's part of their "spiral" technique.  I find that to be a great quality because in some others, they study a topic once and "move on," possibly not covering it again until the test.

Good luck finding a good one!
Clara in KY

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Happy momma to one dear son and two darling daughters, an angel and a miracle toddler

by on Sep. 23, 2010 at 6:53 PM

 We did not like Saxon and it was a fight for Josef to complete.

We switched to MUS (Math U See) and he LOVES it!

by Welcome Squad on Sep. 23, 2010 at 10:55 PM
We do Saxon and like it because of the constant reinforcement.
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by Welcome Squad on Sep. 23, 2010 at 11:24 PM
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We used Miquon math until it ended with the 3rd grade books.  We then switched to Abeka.  My daughter hated it, and it was a dread to do every page.  I had taught Abeka in a school so that is why I chose that curriculum....familiarity.  We made it through the book, but decided not to continue with Abeka.  

I purchased the Saxon 76 and 87 books and gave those a shot..  We started the year with the 76 book but after several lessons we realized that it was too easy for her,and she was bored.  We bumped up to the 87 book.  Still, the first several chapters were going to be all review for her.  However, after using Saxon for a month (between the 2 books) and giving it a fair shot, we realized that it was just not going to work for us.  Saxon is based on a lot of repetition as I believe someone else mentioned.  They basically teach a new concept with the lesson (much like Abeka), but there is only a few (like 4-6 problems) dealing with the new concept.  Then, it reverts back to reviewing all the other math ideas that the child has learned thus far in the book.  

I said all this to say...When we switched to Saxon, we did not notice much difference in the overall teaching technique between Saxon and Abeka.  Saxon and Abeka are similar in the idea that they both use part (the last 2/3 of the lesson) of the assignment to review previous math concepts.  Review is good of course, but we found that the constant repetition became the dreaded part especially when she had already mastered the concept.  

Also, Abeka does seem to be more grade level advanced because we had to jump from finishing 4th grade Abeka to using 7th grade Saxon.  If your child doesn't like Abeka, I can say that from our experience she probably will not like Saxon. 

Someone on this site did introduce me to a free online website with math by grade levels.  I am actually using it as a trial run with my daughter.  So far she loves it.  It is more of a hands on teaching that is done by me so it takes more one-on-one time than just assigning a workbook page, but I am finding that the lessons move rather quickly, and she is enjoying it so much it has definitely been better for us!

Here is the link:

by Welcome Squad on Sep. 24, 2010 at 7:06 AM

I have only used A Beka and we like it.  However, I have heard from people who have used other curriculum that it moves faster than others. 

by on Sep. 24, 2010 at 8:20 AM

Thank you all for your input. My daughter doesn't find the Abeka to be too difficult, she is actually bored with all of the repetition, so I guess Saxon wouldn't be any better from what you have all told me. I actually cross off some of the problems to cut down on the repetition. I concentrate on the areas where I feel she needs the additional practice.

by Welcome Squad on Sep. 25, 2010 at 12:29 PM

I like Abeka and just cross off the extra review that we don't need to do.  I like that it is there if we choose to use it though.  I may only have him do 1 of each review thing daily.   I picked up a full set of Saxon at a garage sale this year because I like the way they introduce some of the concepts.  I also have been looking at Singapore Math (they have it at Border Bookstore now).   Once we have established mastery of arithmetic, I like for him to have different types of problems thrown at him to teach him to rely on what he knows even if it comes in a new format. 

by Welcome Squad on Sep. 29, 2010 at 1:43 PM

I have never used either of those, we use Singapore and love it.  We have used Horizons and Math U See and were not pleased.

by Testing the waters on May. 10, 2012 at 9:59 AM

Hello there, I am totally agree with you. My son is getting smarter when we started A-Beka curriculum. It is much advance than Saxon math curriculum. We love the A-Beka books' pictures and short lessons than Saxon Math books. So math moves faster.

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