On Math.....

I had a have a hard time picking out math curriculum/workbooks in general and even more so for Kindergarten. I don't necessarily believe that a 5 year old needs a math book. But I have gotten them for all my boys so far.

This time I had a harder time choosing. To feel a part of school last year Cohen would grab some of our old books off the shelf- ones Rylan and Cale had gone through but not done every page- and he would ask to do them. So he'd done a lot of K work already. But he's been begging for a math book. Cale is currently using MUS and I like it, but Cohen was too advanced for the Primer, yet not quite ready for Alpha. Rylan is using Mastering Mathematics, and Cohen's not at that level yet either.

At the beginning of Rylan's Kindergarten year I used Modern Curriculum Press K Math book. It was okay. The way they taught writing numbers annoyed me, but we just skipped those pages. He loved the money pages and did like much more than I asked of him. We did do most of the book- which took less than 3 months, then he got to addition and I went ahead and picked up Mastering Matematics- which he was young for, but more than ready.

With Cale, I used Singapore's Earlybird Math books. And I didn't like them. At all. We skipped around a lot and didn't nearly finish the book. We did a lot of hands on and manipulative work. Which was fine, and with Cale's personality and learning style it all worked out for the best.

So....Cohen's math. Obviously we haven't started yet- other than a couple pages- but I've looked it over and so far I like it.

I got McRuffy Math- both K and First Grade since he is somewhere in between levels. I like plain- and it is. I do not like zillions and zillions of pages on counting to 10 or adding with pictures- and this doesn't have it. I want it to progress past where he is when he started- and I think he will with this. And finally, it needed to not be expensive, it is only Kindergarten afterall- and this wasn't expensive.

The K book starts with some counting and moves pretty quick to picture addition. It's got the cut and paste aspect which my kids like, and doesn't require writing.

There are a couple different versions but the numbers are added to the problems and it flips back and forth using gluing or drawing your own pictures.

And by about page 25 they introduce standard facts- using a number line or other manipulatives if needed. I like how it starts small- the first page has 3 problems- written in a very large font. Then they go up to 6 and increase to 9 at the most.

Every few pages they work on other skills like skip counting by 10s or 5s, simple graphs, ordinals, time, number words, etc... And in the end of the book is subtraction.

The K book is short- only about 70 pgs.

I've flipped through the 1st grade book and it covers- multidigit addition and subtraction with no carrying or borrowing. More time, money, patterns and graphing. It ends with very simple multiplication (x2). It is a bit longer at 100 pgs.

Between the 2 I think it'll make up his whole year, especially since he's been a workbook kid for awhile and does multiple pages at once.

A couple things to note:
I purchase the older version- available under the name K Basic Math. They do have a newer, color version. Which is more indepth and more expensive. Math is only available through 3rd grade, and I fully intend to switch, probably after this year, to something new. But this was perfect for what I needed this year.

Also I didn't not purchase a teachers guide. I don't see the point for this level. So the workbook is just another tool to go along with our own manipulatives and activities.

We also own the McRuffy Pond Pals beginning readers (Vol 1 and 2) And they are about the only early readers that my boys- and I can stand. They have controlled vocabulary like all other readers but somehow doesn't sound as corny. And they are funny too.


  1. Thank you for sharing this. I appreciate it.

  2. I think I recognize this as McRuffy Math :) We just started and are using the color math. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE it!!!

    The Teacher's Guide was probably my favorite and usually at the K level I've never really bought them...but with the resource pack and the manipulative learning, my daughter is having so much fun.

    Enjoy your learning time!

  3. We used Singapore for years, but switched to ShillerMath last year. I really like how it explains not just how to do things, but why. It comes with lots of manipulatives, is colorful, and completely scripted for either Mom or, in the case of my 7- and 9-year-olds, the children themselves.

    Even my hubby, a math prof at Oxford University in England, is impressed with its scope and sequence. So, if you find yourself searching again for a curriculum, check out the ShillerMath website, download some practice pages, and see what you think.

  4. This is great! I really like the simple, no bull, formats too... I will have to check these out.


  5. I never was good at math when i was young, and still not my fave. subject.