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Math Mammoth Light Blue Series Grades 1-7 CD

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Item #: 049670
Grades: 1-7

Additional Details

Publisher:Taina Maria Miller
049670

Category Description for Math Mammoth

Theres a whole lot to like about this well-conceived and inexpensive math program. The main features of this program, according to author Maria Miller, are:

  • *Focus is on conceptual understanding rather than rote problem-solving
  • *Teacher instructions are right in the book; no need to buy a separate teacher book
  • *Clear explanations are written for the student, so the lessons are virtually self-teaching
  • *Lessons use lots of visual and pattern exercises
  • *Mastery oriented:concentrates on each topic for a long time studying fewer topics per grade than with spiral
  • Emphasis is on mental math and number sense
  • *Very little teacher preparation is required
  • *Content aligned to Common Core Standards
  • These are all valid claims and sum up this approach nicely. Its linear approach is similar to that of the MCP Math program. Topics are introduced, studied in depth, then the student proceeds to the next topic. Visually, it reminds me of Developmental Math because of the extensive use of pictorial representations. Users posting online have compared the course to Singapore Math, but I dont really see much similarity. While they both emphasize conceptual learning and mental computation skills, Math Mammoth has a much more traditional feel. A distinguishing feature of this program is the authors amazing ability to simplify and clarify math processes so children can understand them easily. Even in printed form, this course is the easiest on the budget using a strictly by-grade comparison. And for those purchasing the complete program on CD (or download), the savings are even greater. Imagine getting a complete, masterfully taught math curriculum for grades 1-7 for less than $150. I would call that frugal and smart.

    Each grade level set consists of four components: two student workbooks an (optional) set of Tests and Cumulative Reviews and an Answer Key containing answers to both workbooks and tests. Currently, we carry the curriculum in print format or CD format by the grade level, Grades 1-3 and 4-7 combined on CD, and the entire course on CD. The course is also available as a download (go to mathmammoth.com site) for slightly less than the CD price. Both download and CD have colored student pages whereas the printed versions are only available in black and white. Currently, the CDs also include bonus software Soft-Pak for Windows only (math, language arts and testing).

    Student Workbooks A and B for each level have varying numbers of chapters, each focusing on a math topic. These are sometimes very broad. For example, one very large chapter (68 pages!) in Worktext 4-B is simply entitled, "Division". It reviews division, and then covers every facet of fourth grade division. Since division skills are being built step-by-step throughout the chapter, theres really no need for review or testing until the end; but it does make for a long teaching unit. Each chapter begins with a short introduction. This is where you will find any teacher instruction for the chapter, including background information, strategies and ideas for teaching lesson concepts, a summary of lessons by title (including number of pages for each), and a list of Helpful Internet Resources for further exploration, practice and enrichment. If the chapter is on a skill introduced in a previous grade, the skill is reviewed before the new material is introduced. Lessons each include a complete explanation of each skill being taught, numerous examples and models (many visual) to help students understand the concepts behind the math, and a reasonable number of problems for students to work to ensure comprehension. The lessons vary from 1-5 pages each. For planning, the author suggests simply dividing the number of pages in each book by the teaching days rather than planning to teach a lesson a day. This would generally mean covering 1-2 pages a day depending on grade level. After the last lesson in each chapter there are one or two reviews. Chapter tests are contained in the separate Tests and Cumulative Reviews book, as are cumulative reviews (taken upon completion of each worktext chapter) and a comprehensive test for the grade level. A nice feature here is the inclusion of grading instructions and scales. If remediation is indicated, the author provides a web address (HomeschoolMath.net) for printing additional math worksheets by grade level and skill. Worksheets are randomly generated within your provided parameters, so each is different.

    As mentioned briefly before, I find the authors teaching methods very solid, efficient, and effective. Her goal is to imbue the student with an understanding of the concepts in math rather than just how to solve problems and this is evident in her instruction. She consistently shares strategies, "tricks" and revealing insights into the mysteries of math, essentially putting a teacher right on the page. An example is in teaching beginners to add numbers with sums greater than 10. She tells students that when adding 9 to a number, the 9 "really wants to be a ten", so you should take one from the other number to make it a ten, and then add the rest. I have seen few other curriculums (see Miquon Math) that teach students alternate, flexible ways like this to approach operations. Another feature I liked in the book was using gridded workspaces for solving problems. Especially for students just starting to use multiple-digit operations, its helpful to get them in the habit of keeping answers neatly aligned in columns. I also like the scale problems in Grade 4s multiplication and other chapters. These are much like the ones in CTPs Balance Math program and very effective for understanding how equations work. Theres also a healthy balance of word problems in the lessons with realistic, practical contexts. The geometry sections are particularly good, too, with ample hands-on work. The author even includes printable manipulatives for constructing your own geometric solids.

    Taken as a whole, the curriculum follows a standard scope for elementary level work. Besides learning standard math operations, students learn money, time, measurement, fractions, number theory, place value, geometry, percents, decimals, ratios, proportions, graphing, probability, statistics, and using the calculator. The sequence is a little different in places, but makes sense and is only a factor if you are moving into or out of the curriculum. Visit our website and view the table of contents for each book for an exact scope and sequence. For placement, a diagnostic test is available on the Math Mammoth website.

    While some cut-out manipulatives appear in the book, some others are helpful and recommended by the author. These include:

  • A geared student clock (Grades 1-3)
  • A ruler that measures with both inch and centimeter marks (Grades 1-3)
  • Base ten blocks (optional)
  • Measuring tape in feet and meters (Gr. 3)
  • Scale in pounds and kilograms (Grade 2)
  • Platform (kitchen) scale which measures in oz. and grams (Grade 3)
  • Measuring cups showing oz. and milliliters (Grade 3)
  • Thermometer in Fahrenheit and Celcius (optional Grade 3)
  • Circle fraction manipulatives (optional Grade 3)
  • I feel other manipulatives, such as a small set of geometric solids, would be helpful as well, especially in the upper grade levels. We carry most (if not all) of the above manipulatives.

    If you are on a tight budget, this is one to consider. You will spend considerably less without compromising on content or quality of instruction. As a bonus, it will be easy for you to use, require little preparation time, be easy for your children to understand, and will prepare them well for middle-grade math.

    Please note that grade levels 1-6 have now been revised.

    PDF Samples:

    Customer Reviews

    5.0 / 5.0
    3 Reviews
    5 Stars
    4 Stars
    3 Stars
    2 Stars
    1 Star
    3
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    First I just want to say this is such a great value for everything you get! Each lesson is laid out very thoroughly which I really liked and it was very visual which would appeal to a lot of younger kids just starting out I was using this with my 1st grader and it just doesn't work for her If your child has problems writing or is overwhelmed by a lot of writing or bookwork this program may not be right for your child I wont say anything wrong about the actual program because I personally really like it but it didn't work for my child that likes to do math in her head as appose to writing out each step and problem
    September 9, 2014
    I like the way this curriculum teaches directly to the child so that the explanations and worksheets are intermingled right in front of the child's eyes I also like how they teach each concept from different approaches to help the child understand it thoroughly
    February 21, 2012
    great to have all the grades
    I have a 1st and 5th grader using this series. Both are advanced in math and both feel challenged with this program. My 5th grader is in his first yr with homeschooling and we are able to move through the easy stuff quickly and go back to 4th grade for basics that he did not get in public school. I print the work in black in white, but when doing lessons my kids follow along on the computer so they can see the different colors on the pages, which helps them to "get it". We have also tried Math U See and both like Math Mammoth much better. Very pleased. Also company had been very responsive with any questions.
    September 5, 2016
    Purchased
    5 months ago
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    Why did you choose this?
    Rainbow Resource Center Store
    I heard great things.
    Steve H on Aug 10, 2016
    pre viewed this item through math mammoth web site and very impressed with the book, and price is great for 7yrs of math
    Joy B on Aug 5, 2016
    I heard great things.
    Steve H on Aug 10, 2016
    We have issues w our internet at times. It feels more reliable to me than downloads only and I liked the boys like working on the computer as well.
    Melanie C on Aug 5, 2016
    pre viewed this item through math mammoth web site and very impressed with the book, and price is great for 7yrs of math
    Joy B on Aug 5, 2016
    I chose this because Teaching Textbooks was leaving my girl behind. I like the in depth approach and there were things that TT was failing at, like money math, so I was happy to buy all the grades at once, so I could go back and copy off all the money lessons. This is also much further advanced from TT which she was doing well grade wise on, but I could tell she was missing some core information. This has been very easy to do with her, not need to make lesson plans ahead of time.
    Melissa J on Jul 7, 2016
    I have heard good reviews of this product and felt it would be a good fit for my homeschooling.
    Beverly W on Jun 24, 2016
    Strong academics, similar to Singapore, and affordable price.
    Alisa E on May 23, 2016
    I homeschool my children and I am looking for math curriculum for my 4th grader. I need it to be complete, challenging, not too time consuming (for me), fun, and cheap. Math Mammoth came highly recommended from Cathy Duffy. And so I decided to give it a try.
    Rebecca L on Feb 7, 2016
    I've really loved how this series follows the Core Curriculum and also what our school uses. In addition, it's explanations are so easy to follow that my son can read along. They are easier for him to follow than the explanations at school.
    Sandra P on Feb 5, 2016
    Great value! I will use this year after year, and nice to be able to print only the materials I need.
    Elizabeth B on Jan 2, 2016
    We have issues w our internet at times. It feels more reliable to me than downloads only and I liked the boys like working on the computer as well.
    Melanie C on Aug 5, 2016
    I chose this because Teaching Textbooks was leaving my girl behind. I like the in depth approach and there were things that TT was failing at, like money math, so I was happy to buy all the grades at once, so I could go back and copy off all the money lessons. This is also much further advanced from TT which she was doing well grade wise on, but I could tell she was missing some core information. This has been very easy to do with her, not need to make lesson plans ahead of time.
    Melissa J on Jul 7, 2016
    • Description

      Category Description for Math Mammoth

      Theres a whole lot to like about this well-conceived and inexpensive math program. The main features of this program, according to author Maria Miller, are:

    • *Focus is on conceptual understanding rather than rote problem-solving
    • *Teacher instructions are right in the book; no need to buy a separate teacher book
    • *Clear explanations are written for the student, so the lessons are virtually self-teaching
    • *Lessons use lots of visual and pattern exercises
    • *Mastery oriented:concentrates on each topic for a long time studying fewer topics per grade than with spiral
    • Emphasis is on mental math and number sense
    • *Very little teacher preparation is required
    • *Content aligned to Common Core Standards
    • These are all valid claims and sum up this approach nicely. Its linear approach is similar to that of the MCP Math program. Topics are introduced, studied in depth, then the student proceeds to the next topic. Visually, it reminds me of Developmental Math because of the extensive use of pictorial representations. Users posting online have compared the course to Singapore Math, but I dont really see much similarity. While they both emphasize conceptual learning and mental computation skills, Math Mammoth has a much more traditional feel. A distinguishing feature of this program is the authors amazing ability to simplify and clarify math processes so children can understand them easily. Even in printed form, this course is the easiest on the budget using a strictly by-grade comparison. And for those purchasing the complete program on CD (or download), the savings are even greater. Imagine getting a complete, masterfully taught math curriculum for grades 1-7 for less than $150. I would call that frugal and smart.

      Each grade level set consists of four components: two student workbooks an (optional) set of Tests and Cumulative Reviews and an Answer Key containing answers to both workbooks and tests. Currently, we carry the curriculum in print format or CD format by the grade level, Grades 1-3 and 4-7 combined on CD, and the entire course on CD. The course is also available as a download (go to mathmammoth.com site) for slightly less than the CD price. Both download and CD have colored student pages whereas the printed versions are only available in black and white. Currently, the CDs also include bonus software Soft-Pak for Windows only (math, language arts and testing).

      Student Workbooks A and B for each level have varying numbers of chapters, each focusing on a math topic. These are sometimes very broad. For example, one very large chapter (68 pages!) in Worktext 4-B is simply entitled, "Division". It reviews division, and then covers every facet of fourth grade division. Since division skills are being built step-by-step throughout the chapter, theres really no need for review or testing until the end; but it does make for a long teaching unit. Each chapter begins with a short introduction. This is where you will find any teacher instruction for the chapter, including background information, strategies and ideas for teaching lesson concepts, a summary of lessons by title (including number of pages for each), and a list of Helpful Internet Resources for further exploration, practice and enrichment. If the chapter is on a skill introduced in a previous grade, the skill is reviewed before the new material is introduced. Lessons each include a complete explanation of each skill being taught, numerous examples and models (many visual) to help students understand the concepts behind the math, and a reasonable number of problems for students to work to ensure comprehension. The lessons vary from 1-5 pages each. For planning, the author suggests simply dividing the number of pages in each book by the teaching days rather than planning to teach a lesson a day. This would generally mean covering 1-2 pages a day depending on grade level. After the last lesson in each chapter there are one or two reviews. Chapter tests are contained in the separate Tests and Cumulative Reviews book, as are cumulative reviews (taken upon completion of each worktext chapter) and a comprehensive test for the grade level. A nice feature here is the inclusion of grading instructions and scales. If remediation is indicated, the author provides a web address (HomeschoolMath.net) for printing additional math worksheets by grade level and skill. Worksheets are randomly generated within your provided parameters, so each is different.

      As mentioned briefly before, I find the authors teaching methods very solid, efficient, and effective. Her goal is to imbue the student with an understanding of the concepts in math rather than just how to solve problems and this is evident in her instruction. She consistently shares strategies, "tricks" and revealing insights into the mysteries of math, essentially putting a teacher right on the page. An example is in teaching beginners to add numbers with sums greater than 10. She tells students that when adding 9 to a number, the 9 "really wants to be a ten", so you should take one from the other number to make it a ten, and then add the rest. I have seen few other curriculums (see Miquon Math) that teach students alternate, flexible ways like this to approach operations. Another feature I liked in the book was using gridded workspaces for solving problems. Especially for students just starting to use multiple-digit operations, its helpful to get them in the habit of keeping answers neatly aligned in columns. I also like the scale problems in Grade 4s multiplication and other chapters. These are much like the ones in CTPs Balance Math program and very effective for understanding how equations work. Theres also a healthy balance of word problems in the lessons with realistic, practical contexts. The geometry sections are particularly good, too, with ample hands-on work. The author even includes printable manipulatives for constructing your own geometric solids.

      Taken as a whole, the curriculum follows a standard scope for elementary level work. Besides learning standard math operations, students learn money, time, measurement, fractions, number theory, place value, geometry, percents, decimals, ratios, proportions, graphing, probability, statistics, and using the calculator. The sequence is a little different in places, but makes sense and is only a factor if you are moving into or out of the curriculum. Visit our website and view the table of contents for each book for an exact scope and sequence. For placement, a diagnostic test is available on the Math Mammoth website.

      While some cut-out manipulatives appear in the book, some others are helpful and recommended by the author. These include:

    • A geared student clock (Grades 1-3)
    • A ruler that measures with both inch and centimeter marks (Grades 1-3)
    • Base ten blocks (optional)
    • Measuring tape in feet and meters (Gr. 3)
    • Scale in pounds and kilograms (Grade 2)
    • Platform (kitchen) scale which measures in oz. and grams (Grade 3)
    • Measuring cups showing oz. and milliliters (Grade 3)
    • Thermometer in Fahrenheit and Celcius (optional Grade 3)
    • Circle fraction manipulatives (optional Grade 3)
    • I feel other manipulatives, such as a small set of geometric solids, would be helpful as well, especially in the upper grade levels. We carry most (if not all) of the above manipulatives.

      If you are on a tight budget, this is one to consider. You will spend considerably less without compromising on content or quality of instruction. As a bonus, it will be easy for you to use, require little preparation time, be easy for your children to understand, and will prepare them well for middle-grade math.

      Please note that grade levels 1-6 have now been revised.

      PDF Samples: