Singapore Math Programs

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Countries around the world first became interested in Singapore's math curriculum when results of the Third International Math and Science Study (TIMSS) were published in 1995. Conducted by the International Study Center at Boston College, achievement tests in both math and science were administered to students in over 40 countries. Students from Singapore ranked highly in mathematics achievement: 1st in the fourth, seventh, and eighth grade levels and 2nd at the third grade level. Results for the U.S. were disappointing: 10th in the third grade, 11th in the fourth grade, 23rd in the seventh grade, and 27th at the eighth grade level. In a follow-up study in 1999, Singapore again ranked 1st in eighth grade math achievement while U.S. eighth graders ranked 19th. Although a first place ranking does not necessarily imply the best program, something about Singapore's math program seems to be working.

"Singapore Approach Math" is a general term referring to the math curriculum, or syllabus, designed by Singapore's Ministry of Education. The curriculum has been regularly revised over the last two decades, with most recent revisions in 2001. We carry two different lines. From SingaporeMath.com we carry Earlybird Kindergarten Math (PK-K), Primary Math (1-6), and New Elementary Math (7-10). From Great Source Educational we carry Math in Focus (K-6).

Both of these programs are produced by the same company, Marshall Cavendish Education (Singapore). The U.S. Primary Math editions have a 2003 copyright, while the newer, Standards Edition have a 2008 copyright. These are both modifications of the original edition of Singapore math. These programs are distributed in the U.S. by SingaporeMath.com. They are essentially the same, though the Standards Edition has a small amount of added material and some of the sequences have been rearranged to better meet U.S. standards. Math in Focus has a 2009 copyright. It is distributed in the U.S by Great Source, a division of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and packaged for the homeschool community by Saxon Homeschool. So, the programs have common origins.

Primary Math and New Elementary Math are based on the 1997 mathematics syllabus. New Elementary Math has since been "phased out" of schools in Singapore (probably in favor of texts following the 2001 syllabus). However, Primary Math and New Elementary Math are the series that originally gained Singapore international recognition for excellence in mathematics.

There are now manipulatives especially designed to be used with the Singapore approach. Look for these at the end of this section.

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Math in Focus Gr 4 Extra Practice A & B Set Item #: MF4EPS
Grade: 4
Retail: $58.70
Rainbow Price: $41.95

Problem Solving Beyond the Classroom Primary 2 Item #: 060257
Grades: 2-3
Rainbow Price: $11.33

Dimensions Math Textbook 6A Item #: 024308
Grade: 6
Rainbow Price: $22.50

Math Challenge the Singapore Way Grade 1 Workbook Item #: 058526
Grade: 1
Rainbow Price: $12.50

Math in Focus Grade 3 Workbook A and B Set Item #: MIF3WB
Grade: 3
Retail: $25.27
Rainbow Price: $19.95

Math in Focus Grade K Teachers Edition Book B 2nd Semester Item #: 002749
Grade: K
Retail: $161.37
Rainbow Price: $121.25

Teaching to Mastery Mathematics: Bar Modeling Workbook Item #: 058536
Grades: K-7
Rainbow Price: $29.90

Thinking Kids Singapore Math: Grade 3 (Level 2) Item #: 036224
Grade: 3
Retail: $14.99
Rainbow Price: $9.95

Math in Focus: Singapore Math Reteach 2A Item #: 061473
Grade: 2
Retail: $39.13
Rainbow Price: $29.35

Math in Focus Grade 5 Teachers Edition Book A 1st Semester Item #: 002733
Grade: 5
Retail: $161.53
Rainbow Price: $121.15

New Elementary Math 2 Teacher Manual Item #: 037937
Grade: Adult
Rainbow Price: $13.50

Math in Focus Grade 2 Workbook A and B Set Item #: MIF2WB
Grade: 2
Retail: $25.27
Rainbow Price: $19.95

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Math in Focus Course 2 Gr 7 Student Book A&B Item #: MFC2ST
Grade: 7
Rainbow Price: $79.60

Thinking Kids Singapore Math: Grade 2 (Level 1) Item #: 036220
Grade: 2
Retail: $14.99
Rainbow Price: $9.95

Math Works 6A Activity Book Part 1 2ED Item #: 048310
Grade: 6
Retail: $8.50
Rainbow Price: $6.89

Math Practice the Singapore Way Grade 3 Workbook Item #: 058533
Grade: 3
Rainbow Price: $12.50

Math in Focus Grade 1 Teachers Edition Book A 1st Semester Item #: 002508
Grade: 1
Retail: $161.53
Rainbow Price: $121.15

Math in Focus Grade 3 Extra Practice B Item #: 048031
Grade: 3
Retail: $39.13
Rainbow Price: $24.50

Problem Solving Beyond the Classroom Primary 3 Item #: 060258
Grades: 3-4
Rainbow Price: $11.33

Math in Focus: Singapore Math Reteach 2B Item #: 061474
Grade: 2
Retail: $39.13
Rainbow Price: $29.35

Problem Solving Beyond the Classroom Primary 5 Item #: 060260
Grades: 5-6
Rainbow Price: $11.33

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