Math on the Level at a glance
Math on the Level does not look at all like a traditional math program, for it was designed for the home, not the classroom. It is not one-size-fits-all. There are no workbooks. It has no grade-based scope-and-sequence that everyone must follow. Instead, Math on the Level lets you teach at each child's readiness, ability, and speed. The full curriculum contains four teaching guides and three resource volumes to cover pre-K through pre-algebra for the whole family.
Introduced in 2007, we chose the name "Math on the Level" as a play on "maturation level." Recognizing that children do not develop mentally at the same pace, we do not try to force a one-size-fits-all approach. Instead, we designed the curriculum to give you the freedom to choose the teaching sequence and set the pace based on when you determine your child is maturationally ready to learn. This approach lets you take more time for the slow learner or speed up the pace for the quick learner without the stigma imposed by grade-level expectations. Also, we emphasize the use of practical, real-life teaching methods that are usually missing from classroom materials. For each concept, teaching guides often provide more than one teaching approach to help address different needs and learning modalities.
Our goal is for your child to develop a fuller understanding of math through real-life learning and individualized instruction, much of which will come from normal daily family activities. The teaching guides and Math Adventures show how to use normal activities as a teaching tool to help your child understand math concepts. By starting where children already have high understanding (their concrete world), math is learned in a way that is relevant, multi-sensory, and fun. On two three days per week, math time becomes an activity which uses and reinforces the math concept they are learning, often through normal daily activities. Instead of trying to learn and deliver a script, you can give math instruction while going to the grocery store, traveling in the car, cooking, or even playing games together with your children. Most children find math time much more enjoyable.
We also use an individualized review approach to make sure each child retains what has been learned. Traditional curricula use a short-term drill approach with large problem sets, even though that often produces frustration and inconsistent long-term retention. We use an individualized review-over-time approach with fewer daily problems -- 5-a-day. Each newly learned concept starts out on daily review. Then, as the child demonstrates proficiency, the concept gets moved to less frequent review (2Day, Week, 2W, or 3W). Thus each day the child is presented with a 5-a-Day paper that has a mixture mix of old and new concepts, provided for them according to their need for review. This individualizezd review-over-time system gives ongoing practice with every concept ever learned, so nothing is forgotten, all without tedious busywork. By focusing on the child's need for practice and stretching practice out over time, each concept gets moved from short-term to long-term memory. The curriculum includes an easy-to-use spreadsheet that automatically handles scheduling of 5-A-Day reviews. The optional 5-A-Day Online service automatically generates the individualized 5-A-Day papers, or you can create them by hand from problems in the Teaching Guides.
First-time homeschoolers often think they must use classroom materials for home instruction. Many "old timer" homeschool families used classroom materials all the way through, largely because they used to be the only choices available. However, that copy-the-classroom approach misses some of the real benefits of home instruction. That is why we developed Math on the Level – to help you make the most of teaching your children at home. Remember, classroom materials must meet the challenge of teaching a class of 20 to 30 same-aged students whom the teacher doesn't know well but must be taught together at the same time. If that doesn't sound like your home, then consider a curriculum designed by homeschoolers to help you be make the most of teaching your children.
Thank you for taking the time to visit our website and for considering Math on the Level. Please contact us if we can answer any questions.
Carlita & John Boyles