View Full Version : math opinions, please

09-04-2014, 10:37 AM
My dd is pretty good at math, but as she gets older, she's liking it less.

She's been doing LOF -- she loved Algebra 1 and did fine with it. Now she's halfway through Algebra 2 and she says she's pretty lost. She said he doesn't explain enough and he throws problems out there and she has no idea what he's talking about. She also told me that she hasn't been using the "Zillions of Problems" books for extra practice -- only what's in the book. So that could be part of her problem.

Not sure what we should do. Just how hard does Fred get? I remember Heather said that Geometry was pretty challenging. Coming from Heather, that worries me a little ("challenging" to Heather is probably totally undoable for someone in my family).

I could try to find a tutor for her to help her through the rest of Algebra 2 with Fred and then do TT Geometry (which we own). I could just have her switch now to TT Algebra 2 (which we own) -- my only concern is that she be prepared for the ACT. My oldest didn't score well in math on the ACT, but that was no surprise. He hated math and it was his worst subject. My dd never used to hate math, and I think she could do pretty well in math and on the ACT. Is Fred just wrong for her? Would TT be good for her, or would I be doing her a disservice by switching her?

If you were in this position, or if you have experience with these programs, can you give me some advice? What would you do? I need help thinking through this.

09-04-2014, 11:49 AM
I am going to reply to myself. :lol:

In the time since I posted, my very practical, common-sense dd has found where she would be in TT Algebra 2 and listened to that lesson. She came out with a big smile on her face! Finally, she understands it! She loved the concrete examples and the step-by-step instruction. Right now she's getting ready to compare TT Algebra 2 and TT Geometry, to see which one she may do this year (because there is geometry on the ACT).

I should have known that she would be ready to work through this problem herself. With my oldest and math, I had to make all of the decisions -- he just didn't care much and was happy with himself if he could keep a B average and not put forth a lot of effort in math. My dd isn't like that at all. I think if she does TT, she'll get everything she can out of it and do well.

I thought Fred was going to work for her through high school, but apparently not. Unfortunately, there is no one in my house who can help with any issues that come up, so probably a "teaching" program with a CD or DVD is that way my family will need to go.

Cindy in CA
09-04-2014, 11:55 AM

I will get clearer info from my son when I get a chance to talk to him but here is my input regarding LOF in our house.

We love LOF here. We aren't using it anymore though but this was not by choice for my oldest. Because LOF was approved for HS credit with our charter school Nick switched to Thinkwell Algebra 1 and then completed 2 last year. He loved LOF and often wishes he could of continued with it but also always tells me that Thinkwell explains things better. He is very visual and loves the Thinkwell on-line instruction. With Algebra 1 he was able to mostly just take the tests with Thinkwell because he had already done Fred, but there were times he would do the entire lesson because Fred didn't cover that particular aspect. My younger son, was using LOF pre- algebra and in seeing his brother's lessons with Thinkwell chose to switch over also and is thriving with it. I know TT is similar, different teacher, but similar.

So my take is that LOF is wonderful, we love Fred here. Some kids need more instruction. Sounds like this is your dd. I would hate for her to stop loving math because she needs more problems or instruction. In your case, I would switch to TT if you love TT. Algebra 2 half way got really difficult even for my very good at math son. He probably would have been stuck and frustrated with Fred if he was still using it at that point. It is just hard subject, with any curriculum.

Let me know any specifics to ask my son.

On a personal note, this year Thinkwell is not accepted anymore with our Charter School so Nick had to switch to yet another curriculum for Geometry. We did Algebra 1 and 2 first and are doing Geometry in 11th. Luckly Pro. Berger from Thinkwell worked on the videos for Holt so he is okay with it so far.

Ask away if you have questions, I will try to answer with my son's help.


- - - Updated - - -

I type slow cause I think a lot. LOL. I saw your update after I posted. We are on the same page. Glad you got it worked out!


DD in IL
11-07-2014, 08:18 AM
We started using Teaching Textbooks this year for Alg 2. I think TT is a little easier than something like Saxon but he is doing better with it and gets the whole assignment done without too much complaint. I thought the price was very reasonable and you own them. The reading problem at the end of each lesson makes my head spin though....thankfully it is just one in the practice and one in the lesson.