Comparing 5 Different Math Curriculum Options

Feb 21, 2011 1 Comment by

 

You know that math curriculum isn’t one-size-fits-all, so it may not surprise you to discover that at the 3rd grade level alone we currently sell 5 different complete curricula options with myriads of supplements. Each has strengths and weaknesses, and many appeal to different students for different reasons. Here is our attempt to summarize your options, (again, we’re looking at 3rd grade as a sample) but don’t hesitate to email curriculum@timberdoodle.com with any questions!

Miquon Mathematical Reasoning Horizons Math Jump! Math Teaching Textbooks
Description: 

The first math curriculum we offered and the one many of us used growing up, but we don’t just cling to it out of nostalgia! This hands-on program utilizes Cuisenaire Rods as the backbone of the curriculum for a fast-paced approach.

Description: 

Most parents know that a child who only memorizes math facts without really understanding math will find progressively complex concepts more and more difficult to understand. Uses hundreds of bright, quick, straightforward problems to build mathematical reasoning skills. These highly motivational activities will take your child beyond mere drill work by using step-by-step problem solving.

Description: 

…Open any workbook and the first thing you will notice is how bright and colorful the pages are. But don’t get the wrong impression; there is nothing fluffy about this program. Horizons Math includes analytical reasoning, memorization, and drill. The skills taught in Horizons Math readily apply to real-life situations. This is a fast-paced, hard-core math program…

Description: 

…If you regularly experience tears from your child whenever new mathematical topics are introduced, you will be relieved to know that there is a more systematic, precept upon precept math program just for him…

Description: 

Far and away our very favorite math program, primarily because of it is addressed to students in a friendly, easy to understand way. The Teaching Textbooks series has been field-tested with outstanding results. Enjoyable, efficient, and effective, what more could you want from a math program?

Cost: 

$12.50 for both 3rd grade workbooks, $15.25 for the Teacher’s Manual

Cost:
$39.99
Cost:
$64.20
Cost:
$14.50
Cost:
$119.90
Additional Students: 

$12.50

Additional Students:
$39.99
Additional Students:
$26.40
Additional Students:
$14.50
Additional Students:
$39.95
Grades available: 

1-3

Grades available: 

Preschool-4th Grade

Grades available: 

K-6th

Grades available: 

1st-8th

Grades available: 

3rd-12th

Format

Plain single-color printing on lightweight pages

Format

One large glossy book

Format

Full color books, 2 student workbooks, 2 teachers’ manuals and more each year.

Format

Black & white printing on standard lightweight pages

Format

Computer based with huge spiral student textbook

Approach

Spiral

Approach

Spiral

Approach

Spiral

Approach

Mastery

Approach

Review

Strengths

  • Fast-paced
  • Hands-On
Strengths

  • Brightly colored
  • Fast-paced
  • Thinking based
  • Teaches understanding
  • Spiral approach
Strengths

  • Brightly Colored
  • Comprehensive Teacher resources
Strengths

  • Master a concept before moving on
  • Simple friendly pages
  • Works really well even for kids who don’t ‘get’ math.
Strengths

  • Self-teaching
  • Engaging
  • Funny
  • Auto-grading
  • Best auditory program we’ve seen
  • Written for homeschoolers
Weaknesses: 

  • Too fast-paced for some
  • Lacks Drill
Weaknesses: 

  • Too scattered for some
  • Lacks drill
Weaknesses: 

  • Teacher intensive
  • Can be overwhelming
Weaknesses: 

  • Boring for some kids
  • Because it isn’t spiral, it can take awhile to get back to a previously learned topic in the later grades.
Weaknesses: 

  • Computer-based doesn’t work for all families.

Our general recommendations (as seen in each Complete Curriculum Package) go like this:

Baby:

  • counting concepts with any toy

Toddler:

Preschool:

Kindergarten:

First Grade:

Second Grade:

Third Grade:

Fourth Grade:

Fifth Grade:

Sixth Grade:

Seventh Grade:

Eighth Grade:

Ninth Grade:

Tenth Grade:


Share
Choosing Homeschool Curriculum, Homeschool book reviews, Homeschool Resources, Homeschooling Tips, Top Posts

About the author

The oldest of the "Timberdoodle children" I now work full time for the company, filling such roles as marketing manager, curriculum adviser, video producer, etc. In my spare time I enjoy reading, babysitting, baking, and volunteering with our local school district, in the church and as an EMT with the fire department.

One Response to “Comparing 5 Different Math Curriculum Options”

  1. What is Mastery Versus Spiral Math? #0051 | Timberdoodle's Homeschool Vodcast says:

    [...] can also visit the doodleblog, and the timberdoodle website for more [...]

Leave a Reply

CAPTCHA Code: