By Diana Boles
(El Paso, Texas)
My name is Diana. I’m a retired teacher from El Paso, I’ve used Saxon for three years with two of my sons, and I’ve been very satisfied with the curriculum. I understand, but do not accept the criticism about the repetition. Review is beneficial for transferring math knowledge from short-to long-term memory.
If students really know the math concept, then the problems don’t take that long. After all, it’s only 30 problems. Forcing kids to retrieve information from their brains from previous lessons is all part of learning concept.
I think this is a strength of the Saxon system. For example, in the Math 76 book, Lesson 76 provides 6 problems from lessons 70-76, 8 from the 60s lessons, 3 from the 50s lessons, 1 from the 40s’, 2 from the 30s, 6 from the 20s, and 3 problems from lessons 8-19. The problem from lesson 8 was a perimeter problem, which if the student remembers that it’s just adding up four sides, takes less time to answer than it does to complain about it.
The Saxon Geometry book is more difficult, but believe me if a child has to work two hours on math -Let’s not forget a core subject- then, it’s still worth it. Math unfogs the brain by forcing it to conceptualize and think rationally. Skills that will serve them for a lifetime.
The bottom line that parents must ask themselves, what is important for their children to really know and understand. One of their answers should be math. Math is not “fun,” which is what society preaches is important, but math is important and vital to living a productive life. It is worth the effort, and I think Saxon does a better job than any other curriculum. By the way, I’m an English teacher, not a math teacher. 😉