Sunday, May 20, 2012

RightStart Math

I tend to post only about the activities we do because that’s what I have pictures of.  So I went back through some pictures and found some math pics.  We are using RightStart Math Level B for Skeeterbug.  I date most of our work and when I looked back through Skeeterbug’s worksheets I found that we started this in February 2011.  This curriculum does not take this long to complete, it’s just my fault for not sticking with it very well.  I was very inconsistent with our schooling last year.  This year we’ve made much progress.  We are near the end of Level B now, close enough that I soon need to order Level C.

I don’t know if I will ever get used to saying “maths” instead of “math.”  I’m used to hearing it now, so sometimes I hear it in my head but it still feels weird to write it.  So forgive me for continuing to write “math” in this post.

Not too long ago I found myself really frustrated with this curriculum.  Skeeterbug was having a lot of difficulty and we were both hating math.  I got some advice to slow down and eventually decided to back up about ten lessons and do them over.  That helped tremendously.  Now he’s always asking for math first.

This is a recent lesson about adding odd and even numbers.  Two evens make even, two odds make even, one of each means odd.  RightStart is a blend of a spiral/mastery approach to math.  I love that after many lessons spent mastering a skill, there is a break to work on something easier like this.

RightStart Math

This is also a recent lesson, building four-digit numbers on the abacus. 

RightStart Math

Creating patterns on the geoboard.  I created the first one and he had to extend it.  There were several of these in various degrees of difficulty.

RightStart Math

Earlier in the year, adding with the abacus.

RightStart Math

Building with cubes to analyse how many cubes are in a drawing on his worksheet.  We had some small centimetre cubes and pulled those out as well.  By the way, that USA jumper we found in an op shop here.  :)

RightStart MathRightStart Math

Playing a skip counting memory game.  Lay out skip counting cards (face down) from two numbers, say 3’s and 4’s, take turns flipping them over one at a time until you find the next one you need.  First to get all the cards for their number wins.  Looks like Skeeterbug had sixes in this picture.

RightStart Math

Here he’s got his hands on my last two cards to try to prevent me from winning.  RightStart uses math games as huge learning tool.  They even have a separate games manual, although we haven’t used it much at this level.  One complaint I have about the curriculum is that it doesn’t often prompt you to play the games.  It’s a scripted curriculum, so I expect the reminders be in there.  I made myself a list of what game was introduced in what lesson so that I know which ones we’ve learned and we can play them anytime.

RightStart Math

Learning about halves and quarters.  Pour half the water from one jar into another, then we halved those again.  We related that to a quarter of an hour, then a quarter of a year.  There was a whole lesson on a quarter of a dollar but we skipped that one since we don't have a 25-cent coin here.

RightStart Math RightStart Math

Jitterbug waited patiently during the lesson until he could finally get his hands on those jars.  Much pouring back and forth ensued.  And wiping it up with a sponge.  Kids just love to pour, don’t they?

RightStart Math

I’ve just started RS Level A with Jitterbug.  This is his first lesson using the abacus.  I really shouldn’t allow muesli bars at the table, it makes his hands all sticky.

RightStart Math

I’m wondering if from these pictures RS looks really simplistic.  It’s just that I don’t have pictures of Skeeterbug doing most of it!  Every lesson starts with an oral review of skills.  So I don’t have pictures of him adding things in his head.  :)  And I tend to take pictures of the fun activities, not the times he is struggling to learn a new concept. 

Hopefully we’ll be able to post a “Skeeterbug is finished with RS B” picture soon!

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