Friday, November 11, 2011

TOS Review: Math Mammoth


 
It has been my pleasure to review Math Mammoth by Maria Miller.  My oldest son is a math person, like his mama.  We didn't have to go all the way through K, 1st, 2nd, and 3rd grade math books, but rather skimmed through all four of them in two years.  He's now in 7th grade and doing well in Algebra II and rarely needs my help.  My next two girls do not learn the same way as their older brother.  I've been so frustrated trying to teach these girls math that we've all been tempted to give up and send them to public school more than once.  Part of the problem is I'm not a good teacher.  (Ironic, isn't it?  I have a PhD in a science and taught in a local University and now realize I'm a terrible teacher.)  I'm never able to really start at the beginning it seems.  It was in this desperate state that I learned I was going to receive Math Mammoth for both my 5th and 3rd grade daughters.  You can imagine how relieved I was!
We just couldn't send these sweet girls to school!
Maria offers complete math curricula for the elementary grades and supplemental materials for 1st -12th grades.   We received the complete 3rd grade curriculum (light blue series) with my daughter who is a visual learner.  She has really struggled with every math program I've tried.  She just doesn't get things that seem obvious to me.  Just counting backwards or skip counting is a challenge for her and she's 8!  My husband has been trying to work with her on her times tables and for some reason she just wasn't get it.  I remember looking at the big 1-100 number table and memorizing from that.  My husband used mnemonic devices to memorize his times tables.  We tried both of our ways and neither worked with Measle.  Maria was able to get through to our daughter where we failed.  First she introduced multiplication as groups, then as an array, and then using a number line.  Each time Measle struggled initially, but after 2 or three worksheets using each method she finally began to "see" it.  I don't think she's going to be a scientist like her mom, but she's definitely going to make it through 3rd grade math!  Hooray!


For my 5th grade daughter we just needed something to help her with fractions.  Twinkle Toes is not great at math, but she's not terrible at it either.  We noticed that each day she missed one or two problems and more often than not they were fractions.  Fortunately, Maria has supplemental math materials organized by grade (gold series) and by topic (blue and green series).   My daughter took a break from her other math curriculum and began focusing just on fractions with the Math Mammoth blue series which includes explanations.  About three weeks later she was able to test out of an entire text on fractions.  If you're just looking for some extra practice worksheets, but don't need the explanations, the green series is for you.

My overall assessment of Math Mammoth by Maria Miller is that it's thorough (the 3rd grade complete curriculum is over 300 pages), but broken down into bite-size pieces so your child doesn't have to digest too much in one day.  Not to name names, but it doesn't require a painful number of practice problems with each lesson like that math curriculum we're all familiar with that has driven our children to tears on occasion.  With Math Mammoth, math doesn't have to be the enemy.  I would especially recommend Math Mammoth blue series (topical with explanations) to anyone who has a child struggling with a particular math concept.  Sometimes you just have to take a break from the fast lane and spend more time on whatever it is that's causing your child to want to give up on math.  For us it was multiplication for Measle and fractions for Twinkle Toes.  Thanks to Math Mammoth, our girls are no longer moaning and groaning over their math each day. 

You can purchase Math Mammoth in PDF (the format I received), on CD-ROM or in book format.  The PDFs can even be filled in on the computer in case you want to go paperless.  And I haven't even told you the best part of Math Mammoth, yet. Math Mammoth is VERY reasonably priced compared to other math curricula.   You can purchase the complete curriculum (light blue series) PDF as instant download or on CD-ROM parts A and B worktexts, answer keys, tests, cummulative reviews, worksheet maker, and Software Pak for only $34.  The printed materials are slightly more and are available from Rainbow Resource Center.

And you can purchase by subject in the blue topical series for as little as $2 each.  Most of them are around $4 or $5. 

Math Mammoth has so much to offer and there's so much to see that you can even sign up for a virtual tour of their website and receive hundreds of free worksheets by subscribing.

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Please check out the other TOS reviews of Math Mammoth.

Disclaimer:  I received the 3rd grade complete curriculum (light blue series) and fractions blue series free of charge in exchange for an honest review.

1 comment:

  1. We tried this not once, but twice. It just wasn't a fit for us. I am glad it has worked for you though!

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