Monday, May 10, 2010

IXL at Math

If you haven't heard by now, we homeschool. Three of the five are school aged and Emmy likes to tag along most days because she can't stand not having the attention. Most days are great and we finish our lessons in a couple hours. Then, there are days when I want to run screaming for the hills because a kid just. doesn't. get it. Our most recent issue was with Alex's math. His public school grade is second but we made it half way through the third grade curriculum before a metal curtain shut down his brain and math just wasn't moving in or out.

We tried to move on. We tried to go back and review the last bit of chapters. It wasn't working. I was getting completely frustrated and disturbing amounts of failure was sinking into me. Then a friend (where I get a lot of my brilliant ideas) turned me on to Holy wow.

We signed up for a month at first. To test it out, get our feet wet and see if we wanted to plunge in the deep end with a full year membership. The kids love it. I love it. I just signed four kids up for a year. (Yes, four. Remember Emmy's need to do what the big kids do? She's got her own login, it's the princess crown.)

I decided to start Alex back at the beginning of second grade. This is another reason I love homeschooling, we couldn't go back that far in public school without being held back. He's been working through it fairly quickly but I can see where he is stumbling and we're able to reinforce those lessons. The kids all love getting their bonuses and will even ask to do additional lessons in order to earn the next one.

From a teacher perspective, there are reports and state standards easily accessible for each student/grade/day. They send you email reports to whatever addresses you choose so dad (or whomever) can get daily updates on how the kids are doing. It's got pie charts and graphs showing mastered skills, time practiced and more.

It won't be used for a full curriculum, we'll still need our books later on. But for now this is a perfect solution to our problems with math.

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