Once upon a time, I had small children who enjoyed cuddling up with me on the couch so I could fill their heads with all things educational. Now, I'm lucky if they want to spend any time with Mom. This became evident last school year as I sat down to work on math with my youngest.
Math has always been a time when we worked together. Then, I began to notice her starting to pull away. Honestly, I would have chalked it up to moody preteen behavior if I hadn't already gone through this with her older siblings.
She needed time on her own. She needed to become independent in her learning. And, the homeschool math curriculum we were using was simply not working.
It was time for a change.
Finding a Math Curriculum for Independent Learners
When I realized we would have to switch math curriculums, I inwardly (and maybe even outwardly) groaned. We had been using our current math curriculum for years with great success. But my daughter was growing to dislike it, and, sadly, her time hanging out with mom. Now, I know logically this is a developmental milestone in that she is seeking independence and learning to be responsible for her own education. But, emotionally, I yearned for those days of sitting together playing with math manipulatives.
As the year progressed, it became quite apparent that changes would need to be made despite my "mom" desires. She wasn't happy, and it was resulting in a hatred of math. So, I started to explore other options. There are numerous math curriculums out there, but I had specific requirements:
- It had to allow my daughter to work independently;
- Preferably Digital;
- Options for grading;
- A mobile option for when we're on the road for other activities;
- And, finally, it had to be a solid math program.
Testing Out an Online Math Curriculum, Teaching Textbooks 4.0
From the beginning, one of the forerunners was Teaching Textbooks. I had heard many great things about this program from friends. And, I learned that there was a new digital version that had just been released, Teaching Textbooks 4.0.
Teaching Textbooks sounded like a good option, but I'm always hesitant to purchase (or recommend) anything I can't test out. So, I was happy to discover that Teaching Textbooks 4.0 had a free trial! My daughter took the placement test to determine what level of Teaching Textbooks would be best for her. Then, I signed us up, and the new math adventure began!
Does Teaching Textbooks 4.0 Check Off All The Boxes?
As we began our free trial, I noted that I was able to start quickly checking off everything on my list.
The program is entirely digital. There are no extra books to purchase for the student or the teacher. The student logs in and is directed to the digital textbook, where she watches a lesson. She then answers a few questions to determine how much of the knowledge she retained.
The student's answers are graded and recorded in the Gradebook. Parents have optional settings regarding Hints and Second Chances, but the Gradebook is easy to access and read. There are grades for each lesson and periodic quizzes. The best part is that the Gradebook is stored online, so it can be accessed from any device.
Because it is digital with a lesson, graded questions, and a parent hub, this program is perfect for independent learners. My daughter starts and finishes her lesson on most days without any questions for me. She likes the ability to work in her own time and her own space. And, I like that I can see her progress and note what she needs to review while still letting her be responsible for her own work.
Since I was a math teacher in a former life, I hold a pretty high standard for math programs. Teaching Textbooks 4.0 is a thorough program with easy-to-follow short lessons. It uses a review method to help build retention, which is similar to a spiral approach.
And, lastly, Teaching Textbooks 4.0 has the option to be used with desktops, tablets, and phones. This feature works perfectly with our busy lifestyle that often involves hours on the road, driving to dance classes, and other outside commitments.
Extra Benefits of Teaching Textbooks 4.0
Teaching Textbooks 4.0 checked off all my requirements. So, I was happy to discover that it had a few extra benefits, as well.
The Pause function is excellent for long breaks and field trips. I've used it many times when we've been on vacation. Simply choose the Pause button in the Parent section and pause your subscription for a few days. I wasn't expecting this extra benefit, but I love it!
The great folks at Teaching Textbooks understand that many homeschoolers come from large families, so they capped the total annual cost to these families at $199.08. So basically, you can get eight kids' subscriptions for $25 per child.
Ready to Check Out Teaching Textbooks for Yourself?
Grab your free trial and see for yourself. The free trial does NOT require a credit card (whoopee!) and will allow you to access 15 lessons over an unlimited time. If you have an independent learner, this is a great program to help them develop responsibility for their education.
Hi, I’m Dachelle. I’m a homeschooling mom of 3 in the South. I love chocolate and have been known to hide it from my children. I can often be found reading a good book (or even sometimes just an okay book) and enjoying a jar of Nutella — don’t judge. I blog, here, at HideTheChocolate.com when I’m not creating book clubs and making lists…lots and lots of lists (it’s an addiction). Learn more…