I am looking forward to sharing monthly about our journey with RightStart™ Mathematics! RightStart™ has loaned me curriculum for my two youngest daughters in exchange for sharing our honest thoughts and opinions.
I have always struggled with teaching my children math. Math comes easy to me which makes teaching it hard. So many times I have frustratingly said, “I don’t know why you don’t understand! It’s so easy!” I forget that not everyone thinks or learns like I do.
My oldest daughter (12 yrs old) doesn’t do well with repetition and worksheets. She has an amazing memory and she learns best by reading–once she’s learned something, she stores is safely away in her brain and doesn’t need a lot of repetition to remember it. My middle daughter (8 yrs old) is easily frustrated with anything that involves extensive writing. She learns best by with hands on activities and by listening. I’m often impressed by her ability to retain what I have read to her even when it appears she isn’t listening. My youngest daughter (4 yrs old) loves to learn. She is constantly asking for more–more worksheets, more pages to color, more activities to do.
All these different learning styles is enough to make my head spin! I was so happy when we happened upon a great math session at our state’s annual homeschool conference this year. It was hosted and led by the author of the Videotext Interactive curriculum. I learned more about my children and their learning styles in that one hour than I have learned in six years of homeschooling!
Tom Clark from Videotext Interactive highly recommended RightStart™ Mathematics. I had visited their booth during previous conferences and I was always intrigued by the way they taught math. We decided to look at their curriculum again and see it was what we needed for our youngest daughters.
After handling the manipulatives and hearing more about why the teach math the way they do, I was sold. It just made so much sense and I knew that the hands on stuff was exactly what my 3rd grader needed.
I went over the review tests found on the RightStart™ Math website and chose what levels we needed. In August, a huge box arrived at my home full of all kinds of math goodness. I’ll be honest, I opened the box and then closed it and put it aside for a couple of weeks. At first, it was a little intimidating. There was so much stuff to look at! Tally sticks, tiles, workbooks, games, an abacus, geometry panels, a calculator…so much stuff!
Then I opened the teacher book and started reading the lessons and it no longer seemed so intimidating. The lessons are well written and guide you step by step in what to say. The lessons are short and to the point. Feeling confident, I started planning out our lessons for the first few weeks of school.
We are only a couple weeks into our journey with RightStart™ Math right now. After the first two days, my 3rd grader said, “I love our math this year!” My kindergartener loves it as well and often asks to do more than one lesson a day. They love the manipulatives and the AL Abacus is helping them to really see math instead of just learning facts.
I look forward to posting more through the year about our adventures with RightStart™ Math. Come back to see if the enthusiasm and excitement continues!