math question for Mr. Hazen

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math question for Mr. Hazen

Postby Ruth » Tue Dec 05, 2006 1:53 pm

I would like to ask Mr. Hazen a question. I have read many of you other respones to others questions, so my question is based off of these responses.
We began our math in K, using Making Math Meaningful, using it through level 3. I switched my son to MUS because he began to loath MMM. I started him almost at the beginning and he is progressing through the program. He is in 5th grade this year and we are just beginning 2 digit multiplication, and I know that if we just keep working at it he will make great progress. I also use Math-it.
After reading your remarks about Mortensen math and the advantages of that program, and the benifits of using math games in our homeschool math, would you have any further recommendations to suppliment our math that would be similar to the Mortensen program? Would you also suggest switching to Saxon at any point? I would love to hear anything more you might have to say.
Thankyou for your time.


Bob Hazen
Posts: 28
Joined: Fri Oct 28, 2005 11:45 pm

Postby Bob Hazen » Mon May 14, 2007 5:11 am

1. limitations of still counting on fingers
The down side of still using fingers to add is that it is so slow, plus it usually reveals a failure to grasp some of the very important abstract-conceptual development and generalizations – and don’t forget the sheer confidence – of mentally working with abstract symbols and their words.
The key to memorization of anything is sheer repetition. But that repetition can come in more ways than drill sheets and flash cards. While drill sheets and flash cards can play a role, they should not be the only means of practice-practice-practice. Other means are listed below.
2. oral recitation: I’ll get something posted on this soon – I’ve got an article already written on this.
3. If we want our children to be able to recall basic facts without fingers, then we can and should provide opportunities where they can practice that same recall in pleasant situations where there’s no time to use fingers – in other words, use game situations for practice. Games: Cribbage; Rummy; Yahtzee; Math Dice. Even basic counting games like Monopoly, Chutes & Ladders, Parcheesi, and Sorry are good for kids to practice counting by ones, to practice counting on from a certain number, and to learn how to look for shortcuts in counting.
4. Skip count songs [for ages 2-8] teach kids how to count in multiples and frees them from the slavery of only being able to finger-count by ones. There are two versions of these songs available at my website (
5. Re elementary math: whatever you use, get my booklet “Math Games to Supplement ANY Math Curriculumâ€

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