Independence - How much do you help in Singapore math?

Locked
Julie in MN
Posts: 2928
Joined: Mon Jun 28, 2004 3:44 pm
Location: Minnesota

Independence - How much do you help in Singapore math?

Unread post by Julie in MN » Tue Jun 23, 2015 11:31 pm

klewfor3 wrote:Just wondering how it works for those that have gone before me ;)

We are finishing up a few math lessons in 4A for my 11 yr. old so that he starts out fresh with 5A in his 6th grade year. As we are working through the last book, he has a lot of review pages. We end up doing much of it together (and we have throughout the school year). Is that fine? Should he be able to do all the reviews without any help?

He grasps much of the concepts but gets hung up on things like conversion of sizes, etc. Once I remind him he does the rest himself. It seems ok, but he's my first so I don't know.

Kathy
Hi Kathy,
I'm sure we are all unique so I hope you get lots of replies, but I'll start with one family's way of doing things.

My son had a well-known pencil phobia, so we often did those long reviews on the marker board. And he did very well on the math portion of the ACT in later years, by the way.

I have no problem with a teacher helping a student. Of course, the goal is for students to race ahead on their own, but meanwhile I'm all for being their teacher and nudging them in the right direction. Not only am I okay with helping, but I believe in letting kids help themselves via cheat-sheets %| Just like the little alphabet card in 1st grade, eventually the 12th grader will not need to look at which way the b and d face, and meanwhile I'd rather the student practice doing it the correct way rather than getting it in his brain wrong over and over. I have yet to meet a kid who wanted to look up something he already knew, so eventually he should stop wanting helps he no longer needs, especially when he gets to upper math and has a lot to do each day. ;)

If you do want to use one of the reviews as a "test," then you might approach it differently. But often teachers who test will give prep sessions and extra credit etc. And with Singapore, we don't want to prep kids so much that they revert back to approaching math problems in only one way - the weakness of most American math programs, IMHO.

I always tried to present Singapore math in terms of "what do you think we should try" or "how about trying this" - and that method requires trying things that don't work sometimes, and hopefully figuring out why. I think Singapore elementary is a great opportunity to build that foundation.

Just one way of looking at it,
Julie
Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
(http://www.CaringBridge.org/visit/ShaneHansell)
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs

mothermayi
Posts: 40
Joined: Thu Jun 13, 2013 1:51 pm

Re: How much do you help in Singapore math?

Unread post by mothermayi » Wed Jun 24, 2015 12:57 am

Sounds okay to me ;) . We are halfway finished with 5A and the word problems on the reviews always seem to give my guy trouble. I let him attempt them alone first. Then we go over them together to see what went wrong and how to fix it. He use to bomb the reviews in books 3A through 4B. He has gotten much better with 5A and now scores at least 80% on the reviews. I'm sure you will get lots of different answers. If using the reviews as teaching moments and your kid has an understanding of the material, then by all means continue on ;) . This is just my non-expert advice :-) .
Returning to MFW for 2015!! :-)
ds13 (8th)--MFW EX1850, EG, WWS, PP Guides, TT 2.0 Pre-Algebra
ds11.5 (7th)--MFW EX1850, AOG, WWS, PP Guides, Singapore 5B-6B
dd7 (2nd)--MFW EX1850, LLFT2, Miquon, AAS1
dd5--MFW K

klewfor3
Posts: 81
Joined: Wed Nov 09, 2011 4:14 pm
Location: Illinois

Re: How much do you help in Singapore math?

Unread post by klewfor3 » Wed Jun 24, 2015 3:56 pm

Thanks for the great replies! Julie, you are so right when you say "I have yet to meet a kid who wanted to look up something he already knew". So logical. :-) Also, I think I will laminate a cheat sheet ;) (love this!) of terms and conversions since that is what he is having the toughest time with....which will probably take care of half of what he waits to do with me.

It's also good to hear about your 11.5 year old, mothermayi. It is encouraging to hear that some of this might just work itself out as we go. I would love to hear about your year doing Ex-1850 with your ages and including your 2nd grader sometime :)

Homeschooling is so wonderful but stretching all at the same time, isn't it? I am trying to shake this unwavering want for something that tells me what my kids should be able to do or to be doing by a certain grade level. How do you handle that?! I came from a traditional schooling background, as did my husband, and NEVER thought I would be homeschooling! I am so happy and grateful to be able to homeschool (especially with MFW) but I have to admit that it is a HUGE stretch for me - even if I know it is the right choice.

Thanks again!
Kathy
Kathy
Mom of Tyler 13, Paige 10, Brooklyn 9 and Chase 3
God bless us!
We've used:
MFW-K
MFW 1st (both versions)
MFW ADV
ECC
CTG
RTR
Expl-1850
Currently using 1850-Modern Times (2016/2017)

ruthamelia
Posts: 57
Joined: Tue Apr 29, 2014 5:34 pm

Re: How much do you help in Singapore math?

Unread post by ruthamelia » Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:44 pm

Hi Kathy! I have really enjoyed using Singapore math with 3 kids so far, so thought I would add my two cents to your question. The oldest has recently finished 5B after starting at 3B a few years ago. I think time spent in Singapore has made a difference in independence as he becomes more comfortable with the style and techniques. When using bar models was new he needed (or at least wanted!) help with every word problem. In the long run that extra help has not been a problem, as he is now an expert at using bar models. I like the fact that reviews are cumulative, so while he may need help with a new skill for the next several reviews, by the time it has been on 3 or 4 reviews he is able to do them on his own. The same seems to be true for the younger kids currently in 3A and 2A. One last thought about doing reviews without help : in my reading about Singapore math, I seem to recall that something like 70-80% is considered an excellent score. On the last review in 5B, my nephew highlighted 6 questions that he couldn't do on his own, and had another 2 or 3 incorrect. It still came up to above that 80% mark, so it doesn't bother me at all that there were a few questions that stumped him, and he wanted help rather than stumbling through without knowing what to do.

For unit conversions specifically, I agree wholeheartedly with having a cheat sheet! I keep a magnet of kitchen conversions on the fridge, why not let them have one? I teach at a community college and most of my students have never memorized conversions. If you use certain ones every day you will memorize them, otherwise it's good to know how to look them up and use them. The exception I would say is conversions within the metric system. It is worthwhile to be able to use powers of 10 efficiently if just going from one metric unit to another. If a cheat sheet is needed for those, I would question if it is a problem of understanding the concept of unit conversion rather than just trouble remembering the conversion factor.

Now, your last post mentioned wanting someone or something to tell you what milestones should be achieved when- I can relate to the feeling! I was public schooled as well, and it has taken some time to train my mind to think about education differently. I still look around for standards and such to have an idea of what similar aged kids are doing, but no longer feel compelled to do the same thing. I'm not sure what your state requires, but in Washington we are required to do an assessment annually, not to meet a standard but just to ensure kids are making progress. I find that has been a helpful reassurance that what we're doing is working! It's also freeing to just think about what each child is capable of and give them what they need with that as the goal, rather than someone else's standard.

Hope something in there is helpful- I really enjoy talking Singapore!!
Kids in school: 15, 13, 11, 8, 6, 4, 4
We have used: K, First, all Investigate years
2018-2019: First, ECC, AHL

klewfor3
Posts: 81
Joined: Wed Nov 09, 2011 4:14 pm
Location: Illinois

Re: How much do you help in Singapore math?

Unread post by klewfor3 » Fri Jun 26, 2015 8:06 am

Thank you ruthamelia, I appreciate you sharing your thoughts and experience...it was spot on for what I was looking for! I have not scored my son, but I am certain he is scoring AT LEAST 70%. That just confirms to me that he is doing ok. That was great info.

I homeschool in Illinois and here we are not required to test. It is one of the most friendliest homeschooling states. But, for the sake of gaining some awareness (and selfishly some confidence) I think I will have them tested next year. I have to find out how that works.

Thanks for taking the time to respond!
Kathy
Mom of Tyler 13, Paige 10, Brooklyn 9 and Chase 3
God bless us!
We've used:
MFW-K
MFW 1st (both versions)
MFW ADV
ECC
CTG
RTR
Expl-1850
Currently using 1850-Modern Times (2016/2017)

Locked

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests