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Math and I have never been the best of friends. It was the one subject that I dreaded like the plague when I was in school, yet somehow I always found the best study partners to help me to understand it enough for our tests and managed to take on enough extra credit work throughout the year to squeak an A out of the class. It still boggles me how I did it.
So, as a homeschooling Mom, teaching math is one of the areas where I am the least confident. I’d much rather grab some supplies and head into the kitchen for a science project or study literature until the cows come home. Those are my strengths. Math? Definitely not.
But, I certainly don’t want my lack of confidence in math to cloud my child’s abilities. Therefore, through my years of being a homeschool Mom, there are a few resources I rely on that I thought I’d share.
Khan Academy takes your child (and you) from one digit addition through trigonometry and calculus. With videos explaining the concept and exercises you can easily work through with your child, Khan Academy definitely provides an additional resource for teaching your child math outside of any curriculum choices you may have made. It also works well as a supplement to help expound on any areas where you and or you child may be having some difficulties or just need a little bit more practice.
Khan provides great resources for test prep, such as SAT, GMAT, and the California Standardized Test. This is a great resource for anyone preparing for these tests!
Khan Academy is a free, not for profit resource, but as such, does glad accept any contributions to keep up their excellent work.
Khan also covers content in science such as biology and chemisty and finance and history. If you’ve not joined the organization before, I highly recommend it, homeschooled or not.
Here’s an example of a lesson within the Geometry section from Khan:
Angles formed by parallel lines and transversals: Parallel lines, transversal lines, corresponding angles
As homeschooling has become more mainstream, it is easier to find math teachers and even math professors who are willing to provide tutoring services for your homeschooler.
I’ve found that word of mouth generally works best for finding a math tutor, but you can also contact your local college or university to inquire about working with education or math students who are working on degrees in teaching for potential tutoring.
As with any tutoring, you’ll want to make sure you and your child feel comfortable with the person and I always prefer a group setting or attend the tutoring session with my son. I know, I’m one of *those* moms.
I’m a big fan of apps for our iPad or iPhones that assist with our math skills. I especially love those that are set up as a in the framework as a game so I can encourage playing of those versus candy crush when we’re waiting at the orthodontist’s office or somewhere similar. Here are a few of my favorite Math-focused apps.
Dragon Box Algebra 5+ and Dragon Box Algebra 12+ ($9.99 each)
These games are available for iPhone, iPod, iPad, etc. I love that they secretly teach algebra all while playing a game. Dragon Box Algebra 5+ is perfect for the 5-12 year old as it teaches basic concepts of algebra. Once they’ve advanced through those lessons, the 12+ version is perfect for anyone 12-17, or, in my case, 42! Ha!
Mission:: Math ($7.99)
Perfect for the 9-12 year old and highlighted as great for girls. Maybe that’s why I enjoyed it so much when I watched a friend’s child playing it. Based on the 4th grade math standards, you have to solve certain problems to be able to rescue the space station.
What are your favorite resources you use for math? I’m sure we’d all love to check them out!
We will be participating in a local co-op for high school math classes. Algebra was too long ago for me to feel confident in teaching it.
That sounds fun, Denise! We start at a local co-op for a lot of our course work this next year, too. Can’t wait to hear how you enjoy it!