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Old 11-15-2012, 08:49 AM   #1
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What do you use for Gr 1 math and reading? Is it fun?

DS isn't enjoying Abeka so much anymore and I'm thinking about switching after we finish up the K5 books.

Just curious as to what you all use and whether your kids consider it fun. Also, can you tell me a little about it and how much hands on stuff there is to do? (that actually comes with it, or is directed to do in the manual)

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Old 11-15-2012, 09:11 AM   #2
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Re: What do you use for Gr 1 math and reading? Is it fun?

For math, we use Math-U-See. It is hands on and none of my kids have complained about math at that age.

For reading, all my kids have been strong readers, so we follow up our basic phonics program with Rod and Staff, which isn't hands-on, but as we use it more as a review to make sure the kids really have the phonics rules down, it's not been an issue.

For learning to read, do the basics, if you are still needing that, we do Sing, Spell, Read, and Write, which has songs, worksheets, and games.

For reading comprehension, we just read together and I ask questions or have them re-tell the story in their own words, but we don't have an actual curriculum for it until 2nd grade.
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Old 11-15-2012, 11:07 AM   #3
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Re: What do you use for Gr 1 math and reading? Is it fun?

We use MFW for everything but math. My kids like it and it's hands on without a lot of busy work. But, I'm thinking of switching to A Beka next year for my up coming K'ers because I think my youngers need something slightly more advanced than MFW. My older will be in second and we will still use MFW, but will have to add a LA program to it. I'm thinking we are going to go with A Beka, but was also thinking about Rod and Staff. Not sure yet...need to get on that since we over a third of the way there and it takes me quite a while to decide. Plus, I'll want to get A Beka used since it's so expensive.
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Old 11-15-2012, 12:56 PM   #4
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I use Math U See Alpha for first grade. My last 2 first graders were/are reluctant and slow readers so I use Phonics Pathways for them. Then I move on to Pathway Readers.

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Old 11-15-2012, 01:14 PM   #5
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Re: What do you use for Gr 1 math and reading? Is it fun?

Oops, I forgot to say that we use Singapore math. My son really likes it. I got the Home Instructors guide even though most people don't. I find that it really adds a lot of hands on to the program. For us, I like having it.
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Old 11-15-2012, 06:52 PM   #6
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Re: What do you use for Gr 1 math and reading? Is it fun?

We use Horizons Math. I love the layout of the workbooks. They repeat a little bit of the previous day's lesson in every new lesson, so they are being challenged and reviewing at the same time. I think it helps the info to stick. I don't use the teacher's manual a lot because teaching 1st grade math isn't as hard as i thought it would be. But they include activities for every lesson, if you want to do it.
For reading, we use Hooked on Phonics and Language Arts by Harcourt Family Press. She loves the quick lessons of HOP. They get the kids reading pretty quickly, so they have a sense of accomplishment. The Language Arts is a nice intro to grammar, punctuation, vocab and writing.
Just a side note: we know every kid is different. I bought Hooked on Phonics for first grade, but my daughter wasn't ready for it yet. I had to back track to Kindergarten. It's been fine since but if you kid struggles with reading, you might want to start there.
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Old 11-15-2012, 06:58 PM   #7
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Re: What do you use for Gr 1 math and reading? Is it fun?

We use McRuffy for math and my kids LOVE it!!! They BEG for math, yes literally!!! There are so many hands on fun activities in it and it's very colorful. If you buy the kit it all comes together, all the manipulatives, all the copy masters and game boards (there are lots of games in it). It doesn't take long a day, the workbook is usually very short and sweet and to the point for the day, it's spiral so it's constantly bringing up everything you have learned. I have 2 kids using it, one "mathy", one far from "mathy" and both are thriving with it.

For reading.. do you mean a phonics program? One of my kids did great with Explode the Code (and would fly through a lesson on her own when I wasn't watching) and the list of readers from Sonlight, my other kiddo does better with Hooked on Phonics with the new DVDs, but we use the older "workbooks" and readers with it, I just work the videos into the order that the books go in. He did not like the audio CDs, but does enjoy the DVDs, I do not think there is as much practice (books) with the newer set so we worked the 2 together.
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Old 11-15-2012, 07:29 PM   #8
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Re: What do you use for Gr 1 math and reading? Is it fun?

We use My Father's World for both. For math they have the Complete Book of Math and there a few hands on activites in the workbook and some hands on ideas in the MFW teacher's manual. Keegan LOVES the math program and Rachel doesn't have any complaints. Just as a heads up....there is hands on math, but it isn't really scheduled out for you. It is broken up into sections, like geometry, patterns, ect with activites for each section. It (MFW TM) tells you what section to do each week, and the suggested hands on activites for the week, but you decide exactly what you are doing that day. They also suggest measuring each day in inches, and adding pennies each day to a jar and things like that to learn place values and number of the day type thing. We like it, and it works well for our family. It seemed too basic when we got it, but it's grown on me.

We also use MFW for phonics. Keegan does not like it. But I think that's because he's a struggling reader. He also didn't like HOP. Rachel likes it and is doing good with it. It has a list practice games that are pretty fun and some of them are movement games so that helps those who are more hands on. They frustrate Keegan though, because his younger sister beats him. They have 1 workbook page to do each day, a couple of sentences to read, and they usually either write a sentence or a few of the days words on a little book or something that they cut from the student sheets. Then we use the review games. But we are pretty early on in the program (day 33, I think), I think it gets a bit more involved as time goes by. I know soon they will start reading their Bible reader and using the workbook that goes with it--Keegan is looking forward to that part, so we'll see how it goes then.
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Old 11-15-2012, 08:41 PM   #9
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Re: What do you use for Gr 1 math and reading? Is it fun?

My dd is a struggling reader, possibly with a ld. I have tried SO many programs, some very fun some not so much (FYI, fun doesn't always = progress), into my third year of teaching reading, this is what works for her. It isn't a bunch of games, but she likes it ok and doesn't complain and MOST important, I really see her reading progressing. This is her daily LA, she reads 1-3 stories using sonlight 1st grade readers, I drill dulch site words with her using flash cards, she works in explode the code, we use All About Spelling (I HIGHLY recomend this program, it is fun and gives an awsome grounding in phonics), we use First Language Lessons and Writing With Ease. I like every one of these programs, they are streamlined and work. When we were using "fun" hands on programs, they took more time and she would get tired and wouldn't be able complete all her work. With these, she can complete them all in a reasonable amount of time.

For a child who is a more natural reader, I would suggest looking at starfall.com as a complete reading program. They have a worktext that goes with their readers, they are very reasonably priced and have a free computer component. I taught a child to read using it almost effortlessly.

For 1st grade math, we used an old worktext I already had, but we are currently using Math Mammoth and we both like it a lot for 2nd grade and I'm sure 1st grade is just as good. They offer lots of game ideas and free computer game links at the begining of each chapter that you can use to practice the things taught within the chapter. I have found that a base ten set, some math manipulatives and a clock (so far) have been good investments and you do have to buy them separately from the program, but we both have been enjoying math mammoth, so I recomend it.
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Old 11-16-2012, 10:11 AM   #10
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Re: What do you use for Gr 1 math and reading? Is it fun?

This year I have a K, 1st, 2nd, and 6th grader. I've always done ABEKA for K and still do. Last year I started using CLE (Christian Light Education) for Math and Language. I love the Math. The language is good. It can be a little much regarding learning the rules sometimes. But they are learning. It is spiral like ABEKA which I like. I don't plan on switching. Last year with my 1st grader started out with CLE then thought the grass was greener with ABEKA and switched over to AKEKA. That was a mistake. He was actually learning better and I ended up liking CLE much better. I switched back in a matter of weeks. No plans on switched again. I just sold all my ABEKA teachers guides grades 1-5.
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