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 Grade 2 Teachers Edition Book B 2nd Semester Item #: 002571
Grade: 2
Retail: $161.53
Rainbow Price: $121.15

Math Works 5A Activity Book Part 1 2ED Item #: 007400
Grade: 5
Retail: $8.50
Rainbow Price: $5.58

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Math in Focus Course 2 G7 Extra Practice A&B Item #: MFC2EP
Grade: 7
Retail: $58.60
Rainbow Price: $49.95

Math Practice the Singapore Way Grade 5 Workbook Item #: 058535
Grade: 5
Rainbow Price: $12.50

Math Works 5B Activity Book Part 1 2ED Item #: 007439
Grade: 5
Retail: $8.50
Rainbow Price: $5.58

Math in Focus Grade 1 Student Book A & B Set Item #: MF1SST
Grade: 1
Retail: $61.40
Rainbow Price: $50.10

Math in Focus: Singapore Math Reteach 1B Item #: 061472
Grade: 1
Retail: $39.13
Rainbow Price: $29.35

Math in Focus Gr 2 Extra Practice A & B Set Item #: MF2EPS
Grade: 2
Retail: $58.70
Rainbow Price: $41.95

Math in Focus Grade 4 Enrichment A and B Set Item #: MF4ENR
Grade: 4
Retail: $71.67
Rainbow Price: $41.95

Problem Solving Beyond the Classroom Primary 6 Item #: 060261
Grades: 6-7
Rainbow Price: $11.33

Problem Solving Beyond the Classroom Primary 1 Item #: 060256
Grades: 1-2
Rainbow Price: $11.33

Math Works 5B Activity Book Part 2 2ED Item #: 007441
Grade: 5
Retail: $8.50
Rainbow Price: $5.58

Math in Focus Grade 3 Teachers Edition Book B 2nd Semester Item #: 002698
Grade: 3
Retail: $161.53
Rainbow Price: $121.15

Math in Focus Grade 2 Teachers Edition Book A 1st Semester Item #: 002561
Grade: 2
Retail: $161.53
Rainbow Price: $121.15

Math in Focus Grade 1 Enrichment A and B Set Item #: MF1ENR
Grade: 1
Retail: $71.67
Rainbow Price: $41.95

Problem Solving Beyond the Classroom Primary 4 Item #: 060259
Grades: 4-5
Rainbow Price: $11.33

Math in Focus Grade 4 Teachers Edition Book B 2nd Semester Item #: 002722
Grade: 4
Retail: $161.53
Rainbow Price: $121.15

Math Works 6B Activity Book Part 2 2ED Item #: 048313
Grade: 6
Retail: $8.50
Rainbow Price: $6.20

Math Works 5A Activity Book Part 2 2ED Item #: 007408
Grade: 5
Retail: $8.50
Rainbow Price: $5.58

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Math in Focus Course 1 Gr 6 Student Book A&B Item #: MFC1ST
Grade: 6
Rainbow Price: $79.60

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Page 13 of 17