Saturday, March 27, 2010

TOS Crew Review: Dollar Homeschool

A Complete K-12 math curriculum, from counting to calculus.

"The Ray's math series begins at a preliterate level with counting; then takes the child through addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and so upward until calculus, teaching concepts with thorough explanations followed by ample problem sets. The Ray's series provides a very full-bodied course of mathematics" quoted from website:
Ray's arithmetic CD contains 12 core textbooks, teacher guides, answer keys, and several other books that are math realted, for a total of 38 books.  The books come in PDF (ADOBE - which is available online for free if you don't have it.) format so you can print what pages you need at what level you need. This is textbook format, so once you print them out, you can keep them in a 3-ring binder or something similiar for your next child to use.
These textbooks date back to 1865 and were used exclusively until 1915. This texts were written by the best of the best in their fields at this time. There is a Welcome file which should be read first which gives tips on where to start and how to progress through the books.  It also has some frequently asked questions.

I looked over the Ray's Primary Arithmetic to start.  The lessons begin with counting and reading numbers one to one hundred. They then progress to oral exercise, including oral word problems.   "How many are one and one?" "How many are three take away one?" As you move through the lessons word problems include: "How many birds are two birds and five birds?"  "Francis had two cents and his mother gave him one cent, how many had he then?" "Jane had ten cents: if she gave 8 cents for a book, how many cents does she have left?"

The core of the program are word problems.  The focus early on is addition and subtraction then moves onto multiplication: "If one dozen apples cost nine cents, how many cents will 8 dozen cost?" So if you don't have a strong reader at this level, most will be oral.  But it is very doable for a first/second grader to get these concepts.

The next book in the series is Ray's Intellectual Arithmetic (and the last one I am reviewing).  It begins with a review for those who may not have covered the topics in the first book or need more practice. I found the concept from this level challenging for myself.  Yes, I could do it, but wow, made me think. For example in lesson 5 (V) you are instructed to start at 8 and goto one hundred four by adding 4 (to 8) successively. (8, 12, 16, 20, 24, 28, 32, 36, 40, 44, 48, 52, 56, 60, 64, 68, 72, 76, 80, 84, 88, 92, 96, 100, 104- phew - done!) Fractions, measurement, interest problems, and percents are also thoroughly covered at this level, and yes, using word problems!! 

This program is advanced, so you will have to look carefully over where your children are at, and possibly back it up a little to make sure they understand all the topics covered.
This is a great program.  One downside I see in it is that the pages require a lot of ink.  I did run the pages on "fast draft" and they were very readable, so that is an option. This is an economical option in that pages printed can be saved for the next child. The other downside is that work most likely will have to be done on another piece of paper, such as a notebook. My children balk at this.

To Find out pricing or for more information about this product and other products offered by Dollar Homeschool Click Here.

No comments: