Math Without Borders Home Study Companions
Pair a well-loved high school math series (Foersters) with video instruction and you have a winning combination. Math Without Borders Home Study Companions provide an element of confidence; the conviction that a challenging high school math course is completely manageable. Why? You have a teacher in your corner. One who calmly and clarifyingly teaches math. Packaged on practical thumb drives, the videos (mp4 format compatible with both Macs & PCs) provide electronic whiteboard presentations to accompany the textbook lessons plus worked solutions to selected assigned problems.
I remember hearing of math courses authored by Paul Foerster in the early 2000s. Considered an excellent choice for college prep math, they were nevertheless not readily available. And, you were on your own with them. Many of us need good support material to bolster homeschoolers confidence and there just wasnt much available. Sometimes, it was even hard to get an answer key. David Chandler and Math Without Borders changes all that. These excellent courses (plus geometry from another author) provide a quality, college-prep, high school scope and sequence and they are do-able in a homeschool setting even if mom is a mathophobe.
The videos are a substitution for class attendance. The idea is to read the days lesson, then watch the video. Use half of the lesson problems as a daily assignment; using the remainder if additional practice is needed. The Math Without Borders videos include explanatory videos plus worked problem solutions for either select problems or the even problems. These solutions can be used to get over a roadblock. Many of the thumb drives include a Resources File which provides spreadsheets and material referred to in the lessons.
The videos (i.e. content of thumb drives) should be saved onto your computer as soon as possible; do not continue to use them from the thumb drive for the duration of the course. They are nontransferable (i.e. may not be transferred or assigned) and can only be used on one computer although you can make a single copy as a back-up. Video lessons were filmed 2007-2008 (Geometry 2014; Algebra 2 with Trig updated this year - 2017) with problem solutions added circa 2015. Each drive includes material on how to set up the course, what texts to use and how to use them, as well as links for obtaining suggested free software downloads. Some courses include printable pdf material. The drive material lists several software items freely available on the internet that are used in some optional (but useful) lessons.
Although a mentoring approach to assessment is encouraged, the Mr. Chandler does provide suggestions for material that can be used as self-tests or assessments. ~ Janice
Algebra I text is Algebra I: Expressions, Equations, and Applications by Paul Foerster (Prentice Hall Classics edition). The odd-numbered problems have answers given at the back of the book (use these for homework). Lessons are useful with older editions of the text.
Geometry text is Geometry: A Guided Inquiry by Chakerian, Crabill, and Stein. (several publishers and different printings but all with identical content). Demonstration files from the lessons require a free program Geogebra - (available as download).
Algebra 2 with Trigonometry text is Algebra and Trigonometry: Functions and Applications by Paul Foerster (Prentice Hall Classics edition). Mr. Chandler notes that trigonometry is rarely taught as a separate course anymore but rather paired with either Algebra 2 or Precalculus. Paul Foerster includes it in both courses. Math Without Borders strongly suggests that taking both courses (dont skip the Precalculus course) is recommended because work leading up to calculus is foundational for later math courses and mathematically based professions. Lessons are useful with older editions of the text.
Precalculus text is Precalculus with Trigonometry: Concepts and Applications, 3rd ed. by Paul Foerster (copyright 2012). Lessons are useful with older editions of the text.
Calculus text is Calculus: Concepts and Applications, 2nd ed. by Paul Foerster (copyright 2005). Lessons are useful with older editions of the text.