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    Math Question - 4th Grade

    I sat down last night and figured that if we have no more delays or interruptions my oldest (4th grade core) will get through the end of the third quarter in math. She has really struggled with math this year. Even though she did fine last year when we got to division it completely blew her mind. We even took off the whole month of December from the normal lessons and drilled the multiplication/division facts, did drills, speed drills, everything I could think of. It seems to have helped, but we are really behind now.

    I'm trying to figure out the best course of action. I'm hesitant to double up on lessons because I think she really needs all of the assigned practice to grasp some of the concepts, but I'm also worried about just stopping when she's done with the rest of the subjects and picking up in August. There is usually some level of built in review when you start a new math grade and jumping back into the 4th quarter would miss that. Plus, I like lining up with the guides, although that isn't as important.

    I think the whole summer off would cause her to forget to much. My gut tells me to continue with just math as long as I can this summer, we will have a little disruption in July, but we could perhaps finish up the lessons, or at least get far enough that we can jump into 5th when we start the rest of the core in August or September.

    Any suggestions for me? I'm hoping the rest of the math year goes smoothly, she is doing wonderfully in her other subjects. I've even considered switching her to a different program, but I really trust what MP provides, and I do like the no frills approach of R&S.
    ~Michelle

    DD 13 (MP 8 - 4FL and Ref/Con through MPOA)
    DS 11 (MP 6 w/MPOA)
    DS 5 - MP K (My first Kindergartner with MP!!!)
    DD 2 - Board Books and Chaos

    #2
    Re: Math Question - 4th Grade

    Originally posted by 3Blessings View Post
    I sat down last night and figured that if we have no more delays or interruptions my oldest (4th grade core) will get through the end of the third quarter in math. She has really struggled with math this year. Even though she did fine last year when we got to division it completely blew her mind. We even took off the whole month of December from the normal lessons and drilled the multiplication/division facts, did drills, speed drills, everything I could think of. It seems to have helped, but we are really behind now.

    I'm trying to figure out the best course of action. I'm hesitant to double up on lessons because I think she really needs all of the assigned practice to grasp some of the concepts, but I'm also worried about just stopping when she's done with the rest of the subjects and picking up in August. There is usually some level of built in review when you start a new math grade and jumping back into the 4th quarter would miss that. Plus, I like lining up with the guides, although that isn't as important.

    I think the whole summer off would cause her to forget to much. My gut tells me to continue with just math as long as I can this summer, we will have a little disruption in July, but we could perhaps finish up the lessons, or at least get far enough that we can jump into 5th when we start the rest of the core in August or September.

    Any suggestions for me? I'm hoping the rest of the math year goes smoothly, she is doing wonderfully in her other subjects. I've even considered switching her to a different program, but I really trust what MP provides, and I do like the no frills approach of R&S.

    WE do math year round. At least 3 days in the summer. It really doesn't take that long and there is still plenty of "summertime fun" to be had.
    Christine

    (2022/2023)
    DD1 8/23/09 -Mix of MP 6/7
    DS2 9/1/11 - Mix of SC 7/8 and SC 9/10 (R&S 5, FFL)
    DD3 2/9/13 -SC 5/6

    Previous Years
    DD 1 (MPK, SC2 (with AAR), SC3, SC4, Mix of MP3/4, Mix MP5/6
    DS2 (SCB, SCC, MPK, AAR/Storytime Treasures), CLE Math, Mix of MP3/4, MP5 (literature mix of SC 7/8/MP5)
    DD3 (SCA, SCB, Jr. K workbooks, soaking up from the others, MPK, AAR), MP1, MP2

    Comment


      #3
      Re: Math Question - 4th Grade

      Michelle,

      It sounds like you are doing what needs to be done and you simply need to continue the diligent effort, trusting that the understanding will come. I have some old notes of Cheryl Lowe’s about math and she wrote, “You can’t teach understanding directly. You have to let it develop.” You have to keep up on the daily practice and let the understanding follow in its own time. It will come.

      I agree with you that it would not be a good idea to take a long time off. I would keep going with the 4th grade book until she finishes, and then move into the 5th grade book whenever that is. And for what it’s worth, Math in our house is just a lesson a day. Some of the lesson plans cut out problem sections, skip some lessons, or have them do all the review sections on Fridays (the 5th grade plans do this). Drives my order-driven mind crazy (and my kids). So we just stick to “a lesson a day” and check off whatever was listed in the plan. So even if you get off-pace, it doesn’t have to worry you, you know?

      And we usually have kids still finishing math into the summer. I actually like it because I don’t want them to have long breaks for math or Latin. You have to review a lot more for everything that has gotten “fuzzy.” If you keep going, they don’t lose so much ground.

      One last thing is that I was starting long division with my 9 year old, and she totally balked at first because it was so strange to her (even though I had explained it beautifully ). I told her it’s like meeting a new friend. It’s awkward at first because you don’t know each other - you don’t know what to talk about, what she likes to do or what her favorite things are. But the more times you see her and get to know her, the more comfortable you become. Same with any new thing - strange at first, but becomes familiar with more time and practice. Help her hang in there!

      AMDG,
      Sarah
      2020-2021
      16th Year HSing; 10th Year with MP
      DD, 19, Homeschool grad; college sophomore
      DS, 17
      DD, 15
      DD, 13
      DD, 11
      DD, 9
      DD, 7
      +DS+
      DS, 2

      Comment


        #4
        Re: Math Question - 4th Grade

        And by "a little disruption in July" you meant a about 7 lb 20 ish inch disruption in a swaddling blanket?

        I say work steadily, but plan to quit all lessons for July entirely. Then, reassess. If she's close to finishing, just jump to grade 5. If she has more than a month of math to go in grade 4, continue from there and start grade 5 when she finishes.

        For the record, I typically skip the last chapter of rod and staff math. Look at grade 5 and see what it reviews. If it doesn't review the very last concepts of grade 4, I say skip em. (Ducking to avoid tomatoes)
        DS12- Simply Classical mash-up of SC Spelling 1, intensive reading remediation, and MPOA 4th grade math.
        DD10- Classic Core 4th Grade w/ 5th grade literature
        DD8- Classic Core 2nd Grade

        We've completed:
        Classic Core Jr. kindergarten, kindergarten, first grade, second grade, third grade
        Simply Classical levels B, C, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5/6

        Comment


          #5
          Re: Math Question - 4th Grade

          Originally posted by howiecram View Post
          WE do math year round. At least 3 days in the summer. It really doesn't take that long and there is still plenty of "summertime fun" to be had.
          I need to get on that boat. The transition from 3rd to 4th grade math was really rough. I thought it was the difference in how the lessons were laid out (which I actually like the 4th grade better), but a long break isn't great for any of us probably.


          Originally posted by KF2000 View Post
          Michelle,

          It sounds like you are doing what needs to be done and you simply need to continue the diligent effort, trusting that the understanding will come. I have some old notes of Cheryl Lowe’s about math and she wrote, “You can’t teach understanding directly. You have to let it develop.” You have to keep up on the daily practice and let the understanding follow in its own time. It will come.

          I agree with you that it would not be a good idea to take a long time off. I would keep going with the 4th grade book until she finishes, and then move into the 5th grade book whenever that is. And for what it’s worth, Math in our house is just a lesson a day. Some of the lesson plans cut out problem sections, skip some lessons, or have them do all the review sections on Fridays (the 5th grade plans do this). Drives my order-driven mind crazy (and my kids). So we just stick to “a lesson a day” and check off whatever was listed in the plan. So even if you get off-pace, it doesn’t have to worry you, you know?

          And we usually have kids still finishing math into the summer. I actually like it because I don’t want them to have long breaks for math or Latin. You have to review a lot more for everything that has gotten “fuzzy.” If you keep going, they don’t lose so much ground.

          One last thing is that I was starting long division with my 9 year old, and she totally balked at first because it was so strange to her (even though I had explained it beautifully ). I told her it’s like meeting a new friend. It’s awkward at first because you don’t know each other - you don’t know what to talk about, what she likes to do or what her favorite things are. But the more times you see her and get to know her, the more comfortable you become. Same with any new thing - strange at first, but becomes familiar with more time and practice. Help her hang in there!

          AMDG,
          Sarah
          Sarah, thank you for telling me what I already knew I needed to do, and just needed a kick in the pants. Thankfully her understanding just seemed to take off at the beginning of January, it wasn't even the long division that was throwing her, just the simple division facts we memorized in third grade. We are also just going forth at a lesson a day, it helps because she knows what to expect and it's just 1 lesson. It's always the first subject we do, and it's easiest to just turn to the next lesson and not have to worry about getting the planner out, I like to get her started first as early as I can while her brothers are finishing up breakfast. I love your explanation of long division, I will have to share that with her.


          Originally posted by Colomama View Post
          And by "a little disruption in July" you meant a about 7 lb 20 ish inch disruption in a swaddling blanket?

          I say work steadily, but plan to quit all lessons for July entirely. Then, reassess. If she's close to finishing, just jump to grade 5. If she has more than a month of math to go in grade 4, continue from there and start grade 5 when she finishes.

          For the record, I typically skip the last chapter of rod and staff math. Look at grade 5 and see what it reviews. If it doesn't review the very last concepts of grade 4, I say skip em. (Ducking to avoid tomatoes)
          Haha yes, that's exactly the disruption I mean. That's exactly why I didn't want to take the summer off entirely. I know the beginning of each year starts with a review, but jumping right into the 4th quarter wouldn't give her the solid review. I just got the grade 5 materials so I will have to look at how much review is included in the beginning. Thank you for the suggestion!
          ~Michelle

          DD 13 (MP 8 - 4FL and Ref/Con through MPOA)
          DS 11 (MP 6 w/MPOA)
          DS 5 - MP K (My first Kindergartner with MP!!!)
          DD 2 - Board Books and Chaos

          Comment


            #6
            Re: Math Question - 4th Grade

            [QUOTE=Colomama;68328]And by "a little disruption in July" you meant a about 7 lb 20 ish inch disruption in a swaddling blanket?

            /QUOTE]

            Michelle! I missed this news! Congratulations! I guess I won't get to see you this summer. :-(
            Melanie
            2021-2022: 13th year homeschooling. 8th MP year.

            A, 12th grade: online classes with MPOA and TPS
            E, 10th grade: 10th grade core; math with MPOA, biology at co-op
            B, 7th grade: 7th grade core; math and comp with MPOA

            Comment

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