I find Singapore Math to be a good supplement, but the numbers of the
texts don’t seem to up that well. I actually have jumped around
with my son so that he gets the same topic explained two different
ways. My dd is just starting second grade and working her way through SM 1B. The tens and ones topic is a review but, clock and
multiplication are new. The timing will be off, but she seems to
pick things up easily so I am looking at is as a review from school
or an intro before the school gets to it. I shipped the books from Singaporemath.com to my mother and she put them in a priority mailer and it cost $9 from the states. Rainbow Resource
seems to have expensive rates. I have also order SM from Sonlight, but don’t remember their shipping rates. It is just a nice break from a Japanese drill book. – Juli
2nd review: Both my boys started Singapore with the Earlybird program. It is colorful, visual and fun. It seemed easy for my kids when I started them in it at age 5, but they enjoyed doing it. Both boys started with EB 1B (1A is very simple.) My first son finished 1B-2B in one year and my second son finished in about 4 months. I think my first son is the better math student but he is just an expert dawdler! Earlybird 2B does contain more writing than my kids were ready for at that age in the “days of the week section” but I just skipped over a lot of that and did it orally.
The Homeschoolers teacher’s manual doesn’t start until 2A. They have a TM for regular school teachers for 1A/1B but I didn’t find it helpful because most of the activities were group activities that were impossible to do at home (e.g. have 5 kids stand up holding number cards from 1-5.) I really like the TM for 2A, especially the game suggestions and lesson plans. We haven’t used the textbooks much (which start at 1A.) My kids are pretty decent at math so I don’t know if the textbooks would be valuable with other kids.
Review 2: We use Singapore Math (Primary Math Series). The PM series is very visual (good for visual learners) and moves fairly quickly. The grade level compares to the US math grade levels until about the end of level 1B when it starts to pull away. By the time they are in 2B they are about the equivalent of the first 1/3 of 3rd grade in that they are working on multiplication which is generally covered in a 3rd grade classroom after a few months into the school year. This series doesn’t provide manipulatives or things like that but you can easily do that yourself.
For that age I would suggest you not worry too much about using a text except as a guide. Math can easily be taught in real life situations,i.e. produce section of the grocery store, paying at the heckout, having them choose which item is the least expensive, setting the table, having the write their phone number, stuff like that. Preschool and kindergarten level is mostly recognizing numbers, what they mean, how much it really is, etc. — Joan
Math: I supplement with Singapore Math and fact practice. This is what we do:
1. Each kid has a “math lab” night alone with me (that’s 3 kids) for about 20 minutes. I do the next SM lesson with them…..if it’s easy we keep going to just get as far as possible. I even let them do it orally with me writing the answers for them…THIS IS HUGE!! It suddenly becomes palatable to do this (of course, some problems can’t be done orally). My goal each year is to get through one SM book (2a for example) during the school year, and then do the “B” book in the summer at a faster pace. For fact practice, we practice about 3 mornings each week (5 min. max) with “math windows” (I have 6 of these) attached to clipboards. This is done after breakfast and they each get a special piece of candy to either stick in their lunchsack or backpack to have at some point during their school day. They get the treat regardless of their “time” (I do time them). I also have flashmaster and I occasionally use this, but for some reason just find it easier to use the math windows. I’ll have to check out math fact cafe.
Also, I made little individual booklets for them (the 1st and 2nd grader)
and made the cover in their favorite. color. My dd is working on multiplication facts and I also included a non-filled in multi. chart at the back of her booklet and so she can easily see that once she gets the 0’s, 1′, 2′, 3’s, 5’s, and 10’s down, there is really not much left to go! She was
intimidated by multiplication facts and that *really* helped her. I made
lots of Singapore math helps in a powerpoint file. You could use it all the
way from EarlyBird to 3A. If anyone is interested, I can email the file to
you. The little booklets I made are on that file, too. – from an afterschool message board