Friday, November 18, 2011

Math Mammoth - TOS Review

Photobucket Often, I'm a first impressions kind of gal, and something that always wins me over is attention to detail and personalized service.  When presented with the many options Math Mammoth has to offer, it would not be difficult to become overwhelmed and full of questions.  An online order form or catalog would not be what I as a consumer would want in that situation.  Thankfully, I got Maria Miller instead.  Rather than give me an uninformed recommendation, she chose to interact with me personally.  She asked about the math history of my children, their strengths and weaknesses, and their likes and dislikes.  Then, she offered her opinion on the best selection for our family.  I truly appreciate this level of client care and am pleased to know that she makes herself available to consult with all customers.  You will not have to make a blind decision - that I promise!  Kudos to Maria Miller!

After emailing back and forth with Maria, I selected to use and review Grade 1 of the Light Blue Series - a mastery based full elementary math curriculum for grades 1-6.  The two student books (A and B) for 1st grade cover the following topics:
  • addition and subtraction concept and basic facts within 0-10
  • place value with 2-digit numbers (a.k.a. tens and ones)
  • some adding and subtracting within 0-100
  • some geometry and measuring topics
  • reading clock to the half-hour
  • counting and using coins (US, Euro, or Canadian)

cover for Math Mammoth Grade 1-A Complete Worktext                   cover for Math Mammoth Grade 1-B Complete Worktext
133 pages                                          125 pages
118 lesson pages
                               110 lesson pages
1A - Contents & Samples               2A - Contents & Samples

In the spiral math program Jeremiah & Caleb have been using, they have both completed a considerable amount of work in math computation.  However, they were both in need of some attention to basic math facts.  The Math Mammoth books have definitely helped them develop both their speed and accuracy. 

Things we particularly appreciated about the curriculum:
  • The workload on each page was manageable. 
  • There were enough problems to prove they mastery of the concept but not so many that they were simply completing busywork.
  • The directions were clear and examples were provided.
  • The pages weren't completely cluttered... white space & margins are good!
This product is available as a download, a CD, or print materials.  Personally, I prefer the downloadable version.  Mostly because it's perfect for a multi-user family.  Save it on your hard-drive, printed as needed, and again and again as your family grows.  Also, since the time I downloaded the Light Blue Series, there has been an added feature. The PDFs in the download version of this product are now enabled for annotation! This means that if you prefer, your student can fill them in on the computer, using the typewriter and drawing tools in Acrobat Reader version 9 or greater. Finally, in my opinion, it's a lot of bang for your buck!  The full set of grade 1 materials (including part A and B worktexts, answer keys, tests, cumulative reviews, a worksheet maker, and Soft-Pak) retails for only $34.00.

From the time my boys spent working through this program, I have no qualms about recommending the Light Blue Series from Math Mammoth.  Although, if I failed to mention the other great series available I'd be truly negligent.  The Blue Series books are topical worktexts containing both explanations of the concepts and lots of varied problems.  Available for grades 1-6, they are very affordable as downloads: the prices vary from $2 to $7.00.  For Grades 3-8, there are worksheet collections available.  The Golden Series is organized by grade while the Green Series is by topic.  Last but not least, Make It Real Life Learning offers a series of workbooks that each concentrate on one mathematical theme while answering the question, "When am I ever going to use this?"

The TOS Crewmates reviewed many products from Math Mammoth's extensive collection.  You will want to click HERE to read about their varied experiences.
(Disclosure:  I received a complimentary copy of this product in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.)

1 comment:

Amanda Pelser said...

We've done Addition 1, Subtraction 1, and Place Value 1. We're getting ready to move into Light Blue 1st Grade. I love Math Mammoth!