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Volume 2

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Hi,

Welcome to the volume 2 of our new Math-U-See newsletter. Thanks for all the excellent feedback from our last newsletter.

It is our continued hope that the information we share with you will enhance and complement your teaching experience.

Blessings,

Steve Demme


Teaching Tip
The only time I remember having difficulty in a math class was in the summer of 1981.  I needed several math classes by the fall to become certified and was enrolled in Complex Variables at Georgia State University.  In this class we set out to go through the calculus sequence with the square root of negative 1, an imaginary number.  You can imagine how this could be complex.  But what made it really difficult was that it had been 10 years since I had taken calculus in college.  Without a thorough understanding of calculus I could never hope to succeed in a class that assumed I has mastered this subject.  As a result of my poor foundation, I received a "D" for the class.  This was a passing grade, but only because the professor chose to grade on a curve. 

I needed this class to become eligible to teach so I had no alternative but to stick with it and do the best I could.  It was a miserable six weeks of continual failure.  I was lost in class and struggled with the homework.  I tasted failure and defeat for for the first time in any class I had taken, let alone in math.  And the icing on the cake was that I didn't learn anything about Complex Variables.

This is one reason Math-U-See has a mastery approach to learning math.  I experienced first hand how important it is to build on what you know.  If my calculus skills had been solid I would not have struggled in Complex Variables. Conversely Complex Variables would not have been so difficult if I had already mastered calculus.  Math is a sequential subject that builds on previously learned material.

I did receive certification and taught high school math for the next few years.  There I observed many students who had been pushed through the system and were struggling in class like I struggled that fateful summer.  They were taking algebra but had never fully learned their multiplication facts or basic operations with fractions.  Their problem was not algebra it was their lack of knowledge of basic math skills and concepts.  To be successful in math, students need to develop a solid foundation by fully comprehending each topic as it is presented so they can successfully build on what they know. 

We all want our students to be confident successful learners.  By following a logical progression and moving only when each concept has been learned, our students will become successful, confident, and assured math scholars.

If students are pushed quickly through books and worksheets without giving them a chance to develop a sure foundation they will become overwhelmed and feel failure.  I have tasted failure in college and do not want Math-U-See students, or any students, to share this painful experience.

If you are a home educator you are a tutor.  As a tutor you have the unique opportunity to move at the pace of the student.  You do not have to "finish a book" in some arbitrary length of time established by some establishment bureaucrat.  I hope you will take full advantage of your role as a tutor to encourage your student to master and fully comprehend each topic being presented before moving on to the next one in the sequence.  If you do, your student will find math doable, and you both will have a satisfying and enjoyable math experience.

All the News

Blog favorites


The 10 Days of a Math-U-See Christmas

On the tenth day of Math U See my teacher gave to me
 
  • 10 bluebirds singing
  • 9 aqua ribbons
  • 8 yummy chocolates
  • 7 creamy puddings
  • 6 purple violets
  • 5 sparkling raindrops
  • 4 yellow lemons
  • 3 pink roses
  • 2 orange oranges and
  • 1 very very green pea
The Math-U-See Blues - Song and video

Written and performed by Ron Foster at the recent
Math-U-See rep convention.

Special report and guest blog

Dan Sinclair shares about the recent fires that threatened his families home while he was away in Argentina.

"I kept in touch with my wife via the internet. I tried to follow the fires through the internet, but when you are 6,000 miles away, it was difficult."

MathUSee.com Blog

Feedback

Reply to this email and let us know what you think. Or visit
Contact Page


Thanks and have fun teaching math!


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  • Teaching Tip
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  • Blog favorites

 

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Thanks so much for developing your Math·U·See curriculum. When we pulled our autistic daughter out of public school 3 years ago, she was failing 4th grade, and we were told that she was so learning impaired in math that she would never learn enough to even balance her own check book. We are almost through the Pre Algebra book!!!! She has expressed a very keen interest in attending Wake Forest University for college and wants to become a Maritime Archaeologist. She no longer believes that she is the "stupidest kid on the planet." Thanks to Math·U·See her confidence level in her academic ability has shot through the roof. May God continue to bless you in your unique ministry. By the way I flunked Algebra in college, but I think I finally understand it enough now to help our daughter master it. Thank you.
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