Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Math ... because you have to

Jo does not like math. No, I take that back. Jo hates math. If given the chance between working on math or getting stung by a hornet, I really think it would be a big choice; at least, after you get the hornet sting over with, there's the silly loopiness of the Benadryl and mom is pretty likely to pull out the ice cream and make milkshakes. After math, well ... there's just the satisfaction of knowing you've got about 24 math-free hours coming.

We have, for the record, tried more math programs than any family has a right to have sampled. Thankfully, most of these came from my beloved cousin, who is a homeschooling mom to her own die-hard Math Aversion kiddos. Not paying for the programs has not made them any better, trust me. The promises ("painless facts drill!" "seamless skills!" "fun!") are equally as unfilled whether it's your $40 being forked out or someone elses.

For the record, we have tried Calvert, MCP, Math-U-See, Miquon, Singapore and Horizons. We have a small army of math CDroms, including QM Math, Reader Rabbit and Zoo Zillions. We have dozens of math games. While these are well-used and probably the best tools for teaching Jo, she tends to stay stuck on the same games, not advancing her skills at all. Horizons (now carried by SL!) has worked the best for us, although I still can't say that Jo has any real enjoyment of the topic.

So ... any stories of math morphing into fun out there? Anyone dying to share that one, elusive secret of turning math torture into math joy? C'mon ... I'm ready for anything!

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