Singapore Math Classes Online – The full Singapore Math review, with everything you need to know to decide if Singapore Math is right for your homeschool. Includes FAQs, advice on which edition to use, kindergarten options, and more.
People started talking about Singapore’s math success in 1995, when Singaporean children shocked the world with their first place score on an international math test.
Singapore Math Classes Online
This inspired a husband and wife team to bring Singapore Math textbooks to the United States so that American children could benefit from them as well. Now, the original Elementary Mathematics series and other products are used in classrooms and home schools around the world.
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Singapore Math is one of my top recommendations for homeschool math curriculum – but that doesn’t mean it’s right for every child or parent.
Read on for a full review, FAQ, and buying guide to learn more about this world-class homeschool math curriculum and whether it’s a good fit for your family.
Please note that this review is for the Singapore Primary Mathematics series. If you want to learn more about their newest program, Dimensions Math, click here for the full Dimensions Math review. Dimensions Math is a comprehensive math curriculum for kids PreK through 8
Level. Written by American educators with many years of experience teaching Singapore-style math, the books aim to be more familiar and accessible to American parents and teachers.
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Singapore Math calls this the Concrete > Picture > Abstract approach. Take for example finding the area of a rectangle.
Singapore Math also focuses on teaching math in a logical order. The textbooks develop all concepts in a deliberate and step-by-step manner so that children gradually develop a strong conceptual understanding. They learn not only how to do math, but also why what they are doing works.
Singapore Math is a master’s curriculum, with each unit dedicated to one specific subject. Review problems are included at the end of each unit.
Singapore Math gives children lots of practice with basic pencil-and-paper calculations, but the program also focuses on developing mental math and word problem skills.
Singapore Math Grade 3 Workbook, 3rd Grade Multiplication, Division, Addition, Subtraction, Formulas, Fractions, Graphs, Shapes And Patterns (256 Pgs): Thinking Kids: 9781483813196: Amazon.com: Books
Mental mathematics is more than just solving mental problems. It also helps children build strong number sense and a deep understanding of the properties of numbers, so it’s an important part of the program.
Parents sometimes find the mental math guide in Singapore Math daunting. But if you’re willing to read the explanations in the Home Educator’s Guide, I bet you’ll be surprised to see how well you can understand it. Singapore Math uses the same three levels of instruction to help children learn each mental math strategy, so that children (and parents!) become comfortable with mental math strategies and easily used.
Singapore Math also uses hands-on materials and pictures to help children tackle an often difficult part of elementary math: word problems. The program presents a greater variety of word problems than most other elementary math programs and teaches children to apply their math skills in a wide variety of situations. Once children reach the third and fourth grade books, they learn to draw bar models to represent and solve word problems. These models help prepare them for algebra and thinking about the structure of problems beyond the surface level.
It usually takes about 10-15 minutes to present the lesson, with about 15-20 minutes for your child to work independently in the workbook. But this varies by child and lesson, of course! Workbook lessons in the lower grades are shorter, and gradually get longer as children get older.
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In order for your child to get all the benefits of Singapore Math, you need to actively teach each lesson and make sure you understand the math concepts yourself. The daily lessons provide guidance, but are not written. You may need to invest some time to understand the lessons and work through the way Singapore presents the concepts, especially in the upper levels. Don’t worry if math isn’t your best subject, though – you’ll probably learn a lot yourself as you work through the program, and the home tutor’s guides are a great place to start.
And, if you want to dive deep into learning how to teach Singapore Math well, check out Math That Makes Sense: How to Teach Basic Arithmetic. This is my free, online, self-paced course for parents that teaches you everything you need to know to teach elementary math with confidence.
Each year’s textbooks, workbooks, and home teacher’s guides cost about $85, depending on which edition you buy. (See below for a comparison of the different editions.) Only the workbook is edible, so you can reuse or resell the textbook and home teacher’s guide .
You will also need manipulatives, as hands-on materials are so important to teaching Singapore Math. You probably have most of what you need around the house (or in your Math Minimalist Manipulative Kit), but you may need to purchase a few extra items. These are all listed in the Home Educator’s Guide, so check there for the full list.
Why Singapore Math?
There is no preschool book in the Primary Math series. If you’re planning to use Singapore Math for kindergarten, my Preschool Math at Home gives you a year’s worth of simple, fun activities that will help your child build good number sense before starting kindergarten.
Since hand products are so essential to the Singaporean way, definitely plan ahead to make sure you have the treats you need. Once you have purchased the Home Educator’s Guide, refer to the front for a complete list of what you will need. (And don’t miss my Minimalist Guide to Math Manipulatives to learn how to put together a math manipulative kit with stuff you already have around the house.)
As you can see, while I highly recommend the Elementary Maths series from grade one onwards, I am not a fan of Singapore’s kindergarten programs. All of them either have to adapt to an expensive teacher’s guide that focuses on classroom use, using only the textbook and workbook (which is not developmentally appropriate for most of school children), or coming up with your own hands-on activities.
If you want a more hands-on kindergarten program before starting Singapore first grade, consider my Math with Confidence Kindergarten or another one of my favorite home math programs. Most kindergarten programs cover roughly the same material, so just about any formal kindergarten math program will prepare your child for Elementary Math 1A.
Full Year Of 2nd Grade Singapore Math
Singapore Math presents some topics earlier than American textbooks, so it’s hard to say exactly what grade level is equivalent for each book. For example, children in American textbooks usually learn the multiplication facts in the third grade. In Singapore Math, multiplication is introduced in 1st grade, and children master the multiplication facts by the end of 2nd grade.
If you are switching your child to Singapore Math, make sure he takes a placement test to see which book to start with. In my experience, it’s almost always better to go back and dig the basics rather than pushing forward with a shaky foundation.
Singapore Math offers several different editions of the homeschool math curriculum, as well as supplemental books. In this section, I’ll walk you through all the options so you can find the best option for your homeschool.
If your older child is moving into Singapore, make sure he or she takes the placement test. The scope and sequence of Singapore is very different from other programs, so it is very normal if your child is placing below her standard level.
Reasons Why Singapore Math Might Just Be The Better Way
Parents have four different Singapore Math versions to choose from for grades 1-6. (See FAQs above for information about nursery school.)
I personally prefer (and have used) the US Edition, as it is time-tested, focuses on the most important concepts, and covers them thoroughly.
Once you’ve chosen your edition, you’ll need the Home Educator’s Guide (or Teacher’s Handbook), Textbook, and Workbook for your child’s grade, for both semesters.
If you are just starting out in Singapore Math, I recommend putting all your energy into using the three main components of the program (home teacher’s guide, textbook, and book -work) before adding any other components. However, if you feel your child needs additional work in a particular area, Singapore Math has additional books to meet your child’s needs. according to each level of the program.
Edexplainer: Singapore Math
Enter your email below to download your printable guide to using Singapore Math. It includes more information about supplementary books for Singapore, as well as advice on how to tackle word problems and mental maths.
If Singapore Math isn’t what you’re looking for, don’t worry! There are many good home improvement programs out there. Check out my curriculum page for reviews of my other favorite programs to help you find one that’s right for your family.
Updated May 2020. This is my honest opinion about the program; I was not paid or compensated in any way for the review.
Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. If you purchase an item through an affiliate link, I may receive a commission, at no additional cost to you.
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Please note that comments are closed on this post. If you have a question, you can contact me here. As a former math teacher, I had a good idea of what I wanted our math curriculum to look like when I started homeschooling. The problem was, being new to homeschooling,
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