"I wish we’d had Math on the Level from the start."

Review by Eclectic Homeschool Online of Math on the Level

Math on the Level at a glance

Math on the Level does not look at all like 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 for everyone to follow. Instead, the curriculum consists of four teaching guides that show how to teach any concept from pre-k through pre-algebra plus three resource volumes to make it a complete curriculum to teach your whole family at each child's readiness, ability, and speed.

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 longer for the slow learner or speed up the pace for the quick learner without the stigma imposed by grade-level expectations. Moreover, we use practical, real-life teaching methods that are usually missing from classroom materials. The teaching guides often have more than one teaching approach to help you 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. The teaching guides and Math Adventures volume show how to use normal daily 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, and the math is learned through your normal daily activities. So rather than trying to learn and deliver a script, you give math instruction while going to the grocery store, traveling in the car, cooking, or even playing games together with your children.

We also want to make sure each child retains what has been learned. Traditional curricula typically use short-term drill and large problem sets, even though that approach often produces frustration and poor long-term retention. We use an individualized review-over-time approach with fewer daily problems. Each newly learned concept starts out with daily review. Then, as the child demonstrates proficiency, the concept is moved to less frequent review (2Day, Week, 2W, or 3W). Each day the child sees a 5-a-Day paper with a mix of old and new concepts. This review-over-time system gives continuing practice every concept ever learned, so nothing is forgotten, all without tedious busywork. By focusing on the child's need for practice and by 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 all scheduling of 5-a-Day reviews.) 

First-time homeschoolers often consider using 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, we feel that copy-the-classroom approach misses the real benefits of home instruction, which has little to none of the restrictions of a typical classroom.  That is why we developed Math on the Level – to help you make the most of teaching your children at home. Remember, classroom materials are designed to meet the challenge of teaching a class of 20 to 30 same-aged students whom the teacher doesn't know well but must teach together at the same time. If that doesn't sound like your home, then leave classroom materials and methods behind and consider a curriculum designed by homeschoolers to help you be successful teaching your children at home.  

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.