Virtual Curriculum Fair Week Two: Discover Patterns, Mathematics, Logic and Some Science

This is week two of the virtual curriculum fair. Last week , we looked at the good and bad of language arts programs.  You can find my post on that here.  This week, I’ll share what has worked (and not) for us for mathematics, logic, and some science.

Let’s begin with math. Math has never been one of my favorite subjects, so it is something that I wanted to make easier, better, and more relevant for my children.
What didn’t work for us:
* ABEKA– When I began our schooling using all ABEKA resources, math was one of the things that led me away from ABEKA.  There is sooo much busy work in the elementary curriculum.  And, my oldest child could memorize the way to do things and get most of the answers correct, but she had no idea of the concept that she was learning.  I was very concerned about what that lack of concept was going to do when she reached the upper level maths.  So we switched to:
* Math-U-See– This was one of those curriculum choices that I made based on gushing recommendations from friends.  It looked so good at the homeschool convention.  It worked for others.  And, when we began using it, I did see how it helped my children to grasp the concepts better because of all of the visuals and manipulatives. But, the biggest problem I found with Math-U-See is that it is not cyclical.  So, all year is spent on one main concept- addition and subtraction, multiplication and division, etc.  But, other topics are not covered that year. So, Kathryne hit fifth grade science needing an understanding of working with decimals and percents, but she hadn’t covered that.  And, Charles, my child that needs variety, was so bored that he hated math.
What I love:
* Saxon– I turned to Saxon in desperation.  I had heard some criticism that Saxon was very time consuming.  But, I found it to be just what we need.  There are plenty of hands on opportunities- especially in the early grades.  The lessons are cyclical, meaning that some of the same information is repeated year after year in increasing depth.  There is a great combination of new material and constant review, so my easily bored learners have plenty of variety in each lesson.  I do admit that after the first year, I haven’t bought the teacher’s guide for the lower grades, and we don’t go through every single word for word step like the teacher’s guide lays out.  We do have a math meeting each day where we cover the calendar, counting, patterns, and new concepts for the day.

Logic: I had never pondered teaching logic as a school subject.  I wasn’t taught formal logic.  But, at a convention a few years ago, I heard a speaker talking about the importance of logic and giving some suggestions for beginning with middle schoolers.  I haven’t tried a large variety of resources here.  I’ve mostly stuck with her recommendations, but they’ve worked for us.
* The Fallacy Detectives– This was a fun and interesting book that gave some beginning logic instruction, particularly in the area of recognizing logical fallacies.  The kids had lots of fun with this one, and even my little girls got into listening and identifying logical fallacies.  They’ve remembered it well, and now enjoy calling themselves and others on the fallacies.
* Intermediate Logic– This is the book we’re using this year.  It is much drier than The Fallacy Detectives and not as enjoyable to the kids.  I like it because I personally like the study of logic.  It is organized into short lessons with plenty of chance for practice and review, so it is doable for the older kids, though not their favorite.  They are 7th and 6th grade, and I think I probably could have waited a year to start book one and it may have been easier.

Now, because my children are relatively young- 7th grade being my oldest, we haven’t really ventured into the more math related sciences, so I’ll save our discussion of science until later when we deal with general science.

You can read about other language arts choices at these blogs:
Math Lapbooks—Virtual Curriculum Fair Week 2 by Angie Wright @ Petra
School –

Our Choices For Math by Melissa @ Grace Christian Homeschool

A Magnificent Math Manipulative by Letha Paulk @ justpitchingmytent

Our Math Choices – Virtual Curriculum Fair by Tristan @ Our Busy Homeschool

Math Using Hamburger Paper by Debbie @ Debbie’s Digest

Math Literature?!?! by Christine @ Crunchy Country Catholic

Learning Math at My House by Jessica @ Modest Mama

1st, 2nd, 6th Grade Math in Our Homeschool:  How We Got HERE by Susan
@ Homeschooling Hearts & Minds

Math Facts or Fun?  Why Not Both! by Beth @ Ozark Ramblings

Heart of Dakota- The Fine Details- Part 2 Science by Lynn @ Ladybug

Learning Math Block by Block by Laura O in AK @ Day by Day in Our

Plugging Along with Math by Cindy Horton @ Fenced in Family

What’s Working and What’s Not:  Math Edition by Leann @ Montessori Tidbits

Math Anyone? by Cindy @ For One Another

Ahh, Math. by Nicole @ Schooling in the Sun

Flying Without a Parachute: Math with no Curriculum by Pam @ Everyday

Math in Our Homeschool by Christine T @ Our Homeschool Reviews

Math, Math, and More Math by Dawn @ tractors & tire swings

Thinking Mathematically- How I Choose Math Curriculum by Kristen @
Sunrise to Sunset

Discovering Patterns:  Math, Logic, and Some Science by Christa Darr @
Fairfield Corner Academy

The Science of Math by Brenda Emmett @ Garden of Learning

“Mom, did we do math today?” by Chrissy at Learning is an Adventure

Math, Math, and More Math by Joelle @ Homeschooling for His Glory

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