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Theodore Moderator
Joined: 06 Oct 2005 Posts: 2122 Location: Missouri, US

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 6:27 am Post subject: 


Quote: 
But don't give me some bogus answer that it's training for college and that since failing public schools use them, we should rely heavily on them, too. 
Never said that either. Are you saying that since the public schools do something, that's sufficient reason not to? No, forget the public schools entirely, the decision of whether or not to test stands on merit alone. There will be testing in high school and college, and math drill does improve math skills. If we don't agree on that, I'm not going to argue the point further, it'll just irritate everyone. This will be my last post.
Quote: 
Back in the dark ages (JK; it was the early 90s) when we started, I heard from lots of homeschoolers who were doing it in order to avoid testing. Now I'm pretty sure that you and your siblings were homeschooled before I started, and I'd be very surprised if your mom doesn't know about this category of concern. 
Yes, but it was to avoid the state doing the testing, not so much to avoid testing per se. Also keep in mind also that tests, which give you a benchmark to measure progress, are not necessarily the same thing as drills, which may be given for the sole purpose of improving mental computation speed. You might support testing and not drills, or drills and not testing. _________________ Homeschool Articles  Events  Support Groups 

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Lily User
Joined: 10 Jun 2007 Posts: 427

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 7:06 am Post subject: 


Theodore wrote: 
. This will be my last post.

It's very hard to take someone seriously when they take their bat and ball and go home because they don't want to deal with others' opinions.
Is this thread disappearing like the his'n'her airplane thread? _________________ "The greatest sign of success for a teacher... is to be able to say, "The children are now working as if I did not exist."
 M. Montessori
Proud nonmember of the HSLDA 

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seekingmyLord User
Joined: 04 Jul 2007 Posts: 231 Location: Standing in the radiance of His glory.

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 7:45 am Post subject: 


Theodore wrote: 
Also keep in mind also that tests, which give you a benchmark to measure progress, are not necessarily the same thing as drills, which may be given for the sole purpose of improving mental computation speed. 
Exactly!
My 6yo daughter has taken piano lessons since she just turned four. She has to practice over and over to perfect her timing in preparing for a piano recital, basically improving her skills on song that she already knows how to play. In math drills, I am simply drilling her on the things she already knows (not testing to see what she knows as I already know what she knows) so that she will improve on computation speed. 

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Mathmom User
Joined: 06 Nov 2007 Posts: 87

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 10:19 am Post subject: 


I guess if you are happy with how your 6 year old is doing with math, using a curriculum that has math drills, then there is no need for further discussion about it. I don't use them, so I won't be able to comment on them.
However, if you think you are missing something that your child needs to understand and use numbers and math skills, then do your own research on how young children learn mathematical concepts.
You do not have to buy expensive manipulative sets or have a degree in math for your child to learn math. You don't have to say, I am not good at math. Make it fun for you and your child and stop worrying about if they are "mastering it" and what happens if they go to college.
But those are just my humble opinions rambling off the top of my head. So, please don't be offended.
I just think people miss the beauty and wonder of math and numbers. I look for books by Theoni Pappas and use them for my kids. Check her books out and you will be open to a whole other world of math. She has several books written for children, and many other resources.
I liked what Bob Hazen had to say about 6 yr olds and what they should learn for math; it's in his biography at the beginning of this math forum.
I was hoping to hear from him here sometime. I am going to go check out his recommendations. 

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Mathmom User
Joined: 06 Nov 2007 Posts: 87

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 10:31 am Post subject: 


Quote: 
I still fail to see what's horrible about timed drills. Testing per se should be limited, but math drills are educational. I suppose you're also against typing practice? 
Please note:This is a quote from Theodore;I am only responding to the second half of his post. Thank you.
Dear Theodore,
Please and anyone else wanting to know more about timed drills without getting all woundup about it, please....
read Bob Hazen's FAQ section of his biography. He has quite a bit of wisdom to share and I have found him to be have some great ideas how to help my children with math, including some things about math drills. 

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seekingmyLord User
Joined: 04 Jul 2007 Posts: 231 Location: Standing in the radiance of His glory.

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 11:14 am Post subject: 


Mathmom wrote: 
I guess if you are happy with how your 6 year old is doing with math, using a curriculum that has math drills, then there is no need for further discussion about it. 
Drills have just been included in my own designed curriculum and my 6yo is advanced. She was struggling understanding math concepts because she relies heavily on her amazing memorization abilities, which works with most other subjects. I purposely chose to not teach her to memorize math tables, but have used a variety of methods to help her develop math skills basically encouraging her to develop other skills to learn, which she resisted. Had I taught her math tables by memorization, she would be able to fire off the answer with no problems, but she would not get the foundation she needed for higher concepts.
I was rather good at math and loved it, I even tutored at one time. My daughter really hated anything to do with math last spring, now she actually likes it and she is really good at it, so I think I must be doing something right. She keeps asking me about learning multiplication, which is in my lesson plans in the spring. 

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Mathmom User
Joined: 06 Nov 2007 Posts: 87

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 12:27 pm Post subject: 


Dear SeekingMyLord,
If your dd wants to learn multiplication, maybe she would like this website,
www.mathcats.com
My kids have lots of fun there, and it's a great resource. 

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Mathmom User
Joined: 06 Nov 2007 Posts: 87

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 12:44 pm Post subject: 


Dear SeekingmyLord,
I was just wondering what methods you are using which she resisted? Where is she conceptually now, in math?
How is she is advancedjust in her memorization skills? Is she reading and remembering things?
Maybe we can start sharing ideas and resources. My son loves math and keeps his sisters interested in math, along with me. I'm going to start a new thread, here in the math section because I'm not interested in discussing drills, and that's the subject on this thread.
Thanks. 

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seekingmyLord User
Joined: 04 Jul 2007 Posts: 231 Location: Standing in the radiance of His glory.

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 2:31 pm Post subject: 


Mathmom wrote: 
Dear SeekingmyLord,
I was just wondering what methods you are using which she resisted? Where is she conceptually now, in math?
How is she is advancedjust in her memorization skills? Is she reading and remembering things?
Maybe we can start sharing ideas and resources. My son loves math and keeps his sisters interested in math, along with me. I'm going to start a new thread, here in the math section because I'm not interested in discussing drills, and that's the subject on this thread.
Thanks. 
Since you asked....
She is not as advanced in math in comparison to her other subjects. At this point, she is just starting to add and subtract two digit numbers without regrouping, but now she is really motivated so we are moving along at a faster pace. At the same time, she can count coins and add them up to certain amount. She can also tell time to 5 minutes. She can skip count 2, 5, and 10s. She knows the difference between even and odd numbers and that adding an odd number with an even one will produce an odd number, and so on.
She was okay in the spring with addition, but subtraction... she just could not get the concept of it at all. We did manipulatives, Professor Bee, computer games, you name it. Then one day, I presented it differently.
You see, my daughter is a people person, so much so that when she was four she could not pick out a penny amongst silver coins, but if I asked her to find the coin with Abraham Lincoln, the child found it and then proceeded to tell me everything she knew about the man and the coin itself, even that it was a penny and that it was the only coin that was made of copper which turns brown. I then would place the penny back with the other coins and ask her to find the "penny", she just could not do it. She was like that for 6 months. She knows every person on the coins.
Back to subtraction, I finally asked her if she had five pieces of candy and she gave one piece to each of three friends how many would she have left, without any hesitation she said "2." Then I would show her the equation on paper 53=_ ....blank stare! It took some time to teach her to make the connection in her interesting thinking processes that the equation is the same as the friend story. I taught her to make a story of each equation and she finally got to the point that she could just look at the equation and get the answer using more traditional math thinking processes.
Since she was 3yo, she could narrate a story back to me that I read to her. She is always expected to narrate stories after she reads them, in fact, she does it without asking most of the time. She memorizes a scripture verse once a week and one or two short poems a month and sometimes one long one. She reads at at 3rd and 4th grade levels mostly, but she does better with books that have pictures rather than the typical chapter books, which I think is just because of her age. She also knows several French and Latin words because she memorizes easily. She really loves geography, maps, anything to do with weather, and distrastous natural forces, like tornados, volcanoes, etc.
She is quite gifted in music also. She started piano lessons at four; it is nearly impossible to find a teacher to take a child at that age. At her last recital, a composer, finishing her PhD, commented that of all the students she saw that day, my daughter was the one who really stood out in her talent and her enjoyment in performing. 

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Mathmom User
Joined: 06 Nov 2007 Posts: 87

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 4:42 pm Post subject: 


Dear seeking,
I think you could let her learn about some mathematicians. You both probably would like to read about Carl Frederick Gauss.
Also, Theoni Pappas wrote books called The Adventures of Penrose the Mathematical Cat and The Further Adventures of Penrose...
Then you can introduce her to Fibonacci numbers, Tangrams, the abacus, etc. 

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Ramona User
Joined: 15 Aug 2006 Posts: 414

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 8:11 pm Post subject: 


Theodore wrote: 
Quote: 
Back in the dark ages (JK; it was the early 90s) when we started, I heard from lots of homeschoolers who were doing it in order to avoid testing. Now I'm pretty sure that you and your siblings were homeschooled before I started, and I'd be very surprised if your mom doesn't know about this category of concern. 
Yes, but it was to avoid the state doing the testing, not so much to avoid testing per se. Also keep in mind also that tests, which give you a benchmark to measure progress, are not necessarily the same thing as drills, which may be given for the sole purpose of improving mental computation speed. You might support testing and not drills, or drills and not testing. 
Nope. The huge crowds of people I'm talking about in the early 90s didn't care who was giving the tests, they didn't want their kids to have to take standardized tests at allor any tests at all, in some cases. Because of test anxiety. Because of "teaching to the test." And other things.
But this is a major tangent off the original thread.
For the record, although I'm opposed to testing in general, I'm quite in favor of timed math drills. I see the two as essentially different.
Ramona 

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Ramona User
Joined: 15 Aug 2006 Posts: 414

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 8:19 pm Post subject: 


seekingmyLord wrote: 
I finally asked her if she had five pieces of candy and she gave one piece to each of three friends how many would she have left, without any hesitation she said "2." Then I would show her the equation on paper 53=_ ....blank stare! It took some time to teach her to make the connection in her interesting thinking processes that the equation is the same as the friend story. 
I've enjoyed using Bob Hazen's suggestions for having the kids learn math facts in all the different ways: oral, pictorial, written, symbolic, etc. However, with my 4th child I finally realized that not only do I need to teach in one of these ways and then require the child to spit the fact back in all the others, but I actually need to teach each fact in each way, and teach the connections between all the different ways before I expect the student to make the connection and generate correct answers.
Ramona 

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Theodore Moderator
Joined: 06 Oct 2005 Posts: 2122 Location: Missouri, US

Posted: Tue Jan 15, 2008 8:58 pm Post subject: 


Lily wrote: 
It's very hard to take someone seriously when they take their bat and ball and go home because they don't want to deal with others' opinions.
Is this thread disappearing like the his'n'her airplane thread? 
I enjoy debating. I'd be perfectly happy to keep posting until the end of time, but it wouldn't be constructive at this point. You already know my opinion.
No, this thread is not disappearing, since it's related to the theme of the forum. I felt that the other thread wouldn't do anything except make some people unhappy (especially you), and since it wasn't even remotely related to homeschooling, I removed it. If you really want to continue that discussion, we can do it via PM once I locate my statistics book, though I don't see what you'd gain out of doing so. I already apologized via PM for bringing up the subject in the first place. _________________ Homeschool Articles  Events  Support Groups 

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Mathmom User
Joined: 06 Nov 2007 Posts: 87

Posted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 1:36 am Post subject: Hundred Charts for arithmetic 


Dear Ramona and Seeking,
Have you seen and/or used 100 charts? They helped my oldest a lot with her adding and subtracting. 

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seekingmyLord User
Joined: 04 Jul 2007 Posts: 231 Location: Standing in the radiance of His glory.

Posted: Wed Jan 16, 2008 6:05 am Post subject: 


Mathmom wrote: 
Dear seeking,
I think you could let her learn about some mathematicians. You both probably would like to read about Carl Frederick Gauss.
Also, Theoni Pappas wrote books called The Adventures of Penrose the Mathematical Cat and The Further Adventures of Penrose...
Then you can introduce her to Fibonacci numbers, Tangrams, the abacus, etc. 
I read one booka Peanuts book with Snoopythat introduced eight shapes when my daughter was three. After that she would point out those shapes everywhere in our home and out driving by name without me even asking her to do so. I am sure there are some others, but I personally do not know of a 3yo (just a month after her birthday), who can discern a square from a rectangle or an oval from a circle just from reading one book like my daughter could.
I appreciate your suggestions, perhaps I should have explained in more detail. We used tangrams, the abacus, 100 charts, graphs, number lines, she could count forwards and backwards without a problem, and recognize the number of a group of items without counting up to six, at that time.
This is why it really did not occur to me that she would have any problems with math. However, where she hit the skids was in the equations themselves, not so much with addition but mostly subtraction, so I simply had to slow things down until she was really got the concept, but as I said we are getting pass that now. It was just surprising to me, because she usually just gets things so easily and it just required me to slow down and get a bit more creative in how to teach it. 

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