Homeschool Math Curriculum Guide
Our homeschool math curriculum guide gives a taster of your choices, with advice from my 10,000+ Facebook fans, who know it's only too easy to pick the wrong one!
One thing you can be sure: it's easy to waste money on an expensive homeschooling math curriculum.
Look before you leap!
A very experienced Math teacher has this to say:
"When I started teaching Math, I spent hours...looking for the perfect textbook. I just assumed that, given the fact that children have been learning sums for hundreds...of years, someone must have written one by now...
"Eventually I came to understand that no perfect math book can ever exist. Each child approaches math from their own
perspective and you have to react accordingly."(Gareth Lewis,
What's the best math curriculum you've found? - Click here to share...
How To Choose A Curriculum
Let's start with a guide to the problems you need to be aware of when you come to compare the main homeschool math curriculum choices:
- Buying a homeschool math curriculum can be really expensive. Do you really need one? You'll see from our math activities pages that for years we have done homeschool maths perfectly fine without using a curriculum.
- In fact, I could write a guide to the games that formed our homeschool math curriculum!
- Homeschool is one-to-one; this is not a teacher with a class. If you have too many battles trying to follow the a maths curriculum your child isn't interested in you could end up giving up homeschooling altogether.
- Having said that, it's very clear to me that a homeschool math curriculum guide has to take account of the fact that the best way to learn math varies - not only according to your child but also their age.
What doesn't suit your child now may work fine when they're older.
My son William hated maths workbooks when he was younger. Now he's High School
age he really likes following a homeschool math curriculum and answering
N.B. The links below to Amazon are affiliate links. You will pay exactly the same price if you use them but I will get a few cents.
If you don't wish to support the site in this way, just search on Amazon and do check to see if you can find these cheaper elsewhere.
Your Homeschool Math Curriculum Guide
Here's a guide to the main curriculum choices available to homeschool parents:
- Saxon Math
(Grades 1-12). Probably the most popular homeschool choice. Uses an
incremental, systematic approach with lots of repetition to re-enforce
STOP PRESS: Alison loves Saxon Math for her two children. I have asked her to tell you more about it lower down the page.
- Horizons Math (Grades K-6). A
curriculum which follows a 'spiral-learning' format, introducing new
concept(s) each lesson as well as revising of old material. Colorful.
Teaching manual not very comprehensive.
Math is great if your child is Mathematically inclined. It moves at a
fast past. Saxon Math moves at a little slower pace for those who
struggle in this subject."
~ Brook, homeschool-activities Facebook fan
- Math-U-See (Grades 1-12). Invented by a homeschool Dad teaching maths with blocks so you can 'see' the concepts first. Comes with a teaching DVD. Books are basic black and white format.
- Switched-on-Schoolhouse (Grades 3-12). A computer-based curriculum on a CD-Rom. Can be difficult to follow the explanation to problems.
- Abeka Math curriculum (Grades K-12). Uses a spiral method with lots of revision of topics in the early grades.
- Singapore Math (Grades 1-10). Probably considered more challenging, focusing on mental maths and problem solving. Comes with Home Instructor's Guides for each level.
- RightStart Mathematics (Grades K-4). Hands-on visual curriculum using the AL abacus and Maths Card Games.
- Modern Curriculum Press (Grades K-6). Inexpensive, simple maths workbooks.
- Miquon Math (Grades 1-3). Stimulates creative thinking with exploration and observation. Not much revision of topics.
- Harold Jacobs (Grades 9-12). Popular for High School.
- MathsWhizz (ages 5-13). Another online maths tutoring system. It's worked really well for friends of mine.
- William likes Letts and Lonsdale books. They go all the way up from Wizard Whimstaff at Key Stage 1 to the GCSE series.
Conquer Maths is a homeschool
favorite on the UK exam forum I am on for parents who are researching the best
homeschool math curriculum guide.
It's for ages 4-18 and takes you
up to the UK GCSE standard with 10 minute lessons complimented with
marked worksheets and progress reports.
I found out that there is someone on the HE exams forum who organizes a really cheap discount for members - I think it's about £30. Please contact me and I'll dig out the details for you.
"I would recommend Conquer Maths to anyone.
We used it alongside bits of other curriculum including Math mammoth books. Currclick has quite a range of Maths resources."
I asked Alison from the Courageous Homeschooling Facebook Group to help out with the homeschool math curriculum guide and tell us more about Saxon Math and why she likes it:
should be able to buy the coursework on Amazon. Check online for
different websites to compare prices. It is expensive but completely
worth it in my eyes. You receive a teacher's handbook which labels
clearly what the days lesson involves, a
home study meeting book with a monthly calendar, graphs and number
charts for the child to complete plus two workbooks.
There is also a
huge box of learning aids to buy which are used in the lessons such as
pattern blocks, linking cubes, a scale, geoboards... it's wonderful. You
work from the teachers handbook but the lessons are fun and you
incorporate food, cuddly toys, toy trains etc to the lessons. There are
assessments both oral and written every ten lessons which you then keep a
record of and each lesson adds on to what has been learned before so you
are constantly repeating." ~ Alison
Advice On Curricula From Homeschoolers
I asked my 9,000 Facebook fans to add their real life experience so we can get more of a true homeschool math curriculum guide.
"I am writing a homeschool math curriculum guide so we can share our genuine experience of which is best. It would help us all if you can
tell us of any you have used which you've found useful. I'll add your
comments (first name only) to my page." ~ Sonya
"We are very happy with Khan Academy!!" ~ Maria
a few different ones over the years (we're in the UK). Really liked
Shiller Math, but a bit pricy. Using Galore Park Maths texts books with
one child- I like the lay out, and Heinemann maths with my five year
old- although we'll not stick with this
long, just finishing off the materials I already have. I have just
started using the Maths Enhancement Program with another one of mine-
it's excellent. One of the best I've used, it is also free:" ~ Emma
U See is an amazingly simple program that is geared on mastery. It has
an initial investment in blocks but the teachers guide and workbooks are
priced well. Second students only need the workbook and you always have
the ability to use their drill app for free or print out extra sheets.
It is well price for the excellent program you recive." ~ Jeannine (REVIEWED by another Fan - see below)
"I use Abeka for my kids. I have used grades K, 1, 2, 4, and 6. I have really liked using it." ~ Ciarra
"Saxon for my 6th grader and Abeka for my 9th." ~ Stephanie
"We are Saxon Math users" ~ Happy. Homeschooling. Housewife.
"We like Math Mammoth. We have tried others but this is working well this year." ~ Marguerite
Which Homeschool Math Curriculum?
This gives a homeschool math curriculum guide to some of your main choices.
You can look at this site for in-depth curriculum reviews.
The important step now is to let us know how you've got on; you'll save others from making expensive mistakes.
What's the best math curriculum you've found? - Click here to share...
Some things to consider:
- Will the curriculum you choose work with your other children too? (you can save a lot of money that way).
- Can you buy it used?
- Can you try it out first or borrow it from a friend?
- Will you have to do a lot of teaching, or could your child do a lot of the maths by themselves?
- What are the parent's instructions like?
- Does it look appealing to your child?
- Does your child like repetition and spiraling or do they get bored easily? Homeschooling is all about helping each other.
I'd love you to add to this homeschool math curriculum guide by sharing how you teach maths to your child, what works and what doesn't.
What's The Best Math Curriculum You've Found?
It's very hard to choose the right math curriculum for your child. It would be great if you could let us know how you got on so others can benefit. What's worked for your children? What didn't? What advice would you give to others thinking of using the curriculum you chose? Please tell us...
Find out what homeschool math curriculum other visitors recommend
Click below to see what other visitors think about the homeschool math curriculum they've tried..
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"Just had a look through your monthly
newsletter focusing on math. Thanks so much for all the links and
ideas. It's brilliant!" ~ Diana
totally love all your posts and enjoy reading them....the kids
love the activities and enjoy them through and through." ~ Bianka