Tag Archives: Homeschool math

Math Essentials: No Nonsense Algebra Review

Is your student ready to learn Algebra?  Then you might want to try No-Nonsense Algebra from Math Essentials.

No-Nonsense Algebra

Softcover Book

275 Pages

95 Lessons

Online Access to Video Lessons

10 Chapter Reviews and Final Exam

Retails $28.95

The No-Nonsense Algebra book includes access to online instructional videos that can be used for teaching the lessons if desired.  This book is self contained as a textbook and workbook all in one and is designed to help your student master the concepts of Algebra.  The online videos are optional and require an access code that is found in the book.  It is not required for the student to use the online videos, but they are available if they need audio visual help from an instructor in completing the lesson.

The book contains 275 pages with 10 chapters, 95 lessons, 10 chapter review tests, a final exam, glossary, Solutions (answers key), and many help pages such as important formulas, symbols, fraction and decimal conversions, charts, etc at the back of the book.

10 Chapters:

  1. Necessary Tools For Algebra (22 Lessons + Chapter Test)
  2. Solving Equations (9 Lessons + Chapter Test)
  3. Graphing and Analyzing Linear Equations (6 Lessons + Chapter Test)
  4. Solving and Graphing Inequalities (7 Lessons + Chapter Test)
  5. Systems of Linear Equations and Inequalities (4 Lessons + Chapter Test)
  6. Polynomials (13 Lessons + Chapter Test)
  7. Rational Expressions (Algebraic Fractions) (10 Lessons + Chapter Test)
  8. Radical Expressions and Geometry (10 Lessons + Chapter Test)
  9. Quadratic Equations (6 Lessons + Chapter Test)
  10. Algebra Word Problems (8 Lessons + Chapter Test)

Final Exam

Glossary

Important Formulas

Important Symbols

Multiplication Table

Commonly Used Prime Numbers

Squares and Square Roots

Fraction and Decimal Equivalents

Solutions

Our Experience

My oldest son is ready to learn Algebra.

He has taken pre-Algebra, and uses an online math curriculum.  When we were offered the opportunity to review No-Nonsense Algebra, I thought this would be a perfect supplement to his main curriculum.

After looking through the program with my son for this review, including the HUGE book and online video lessons, I can see that this is a complete Algebra 1 program that can be used as the main curriculum or as a supplement.

My son can easily access video lessons from his dashboard.  Each video listed corresponds to a lesson in his student book.

I am personally most excited about the student book.  It is easy to use. It follows the same structure for each lesson.

  • Introduction to Lesson
  • Examples
  • Exercises
  • Review

In addition to the reviews at the end of each lesson, there is also a larger Chapter Review at the end of each chapter.  So students are getting a lot of review to be sure they have mastered the concepts.

He has used an online math curriculum for a few years now.  However his other program does not come with a written workbook.  We have an option to print his pages but he usually just answers them online.   I like the fact that No-Nonsense Algebra combines both online video instruction options with text book lessons as well as written assignments.

Learning Algebra can be complicated for many students, but following a few simple steps can help make it go as smooth as possible.  It is recommended that each time he sits down to do a lesson, he gathers his student book, a pencil, ruler, graph paper, and a notebook.  Then he watches a lesson on the computer and reads the lesson in his book.  Next he writes the examples down in his notebook.  Then writes and solves the problems, and completes the text book problems and the review.  By following these steps each time, he is setting himself up for success with this course.

The huge student book contains written lessons with lots of examples, easy to read instructions, and fully explained step-by-step solutions.

Rick Fisher, Author

Rick Fisher has been a math teacher for over 31 years.  He is the founder of Math Essentials and Americas Math Teacher and he is the author of several award winning math books, DVD’s, tutorials, online courses, and more. 

Math Essentials offers several award winning math courses.  They have a progressive series called Mastering Essentials.  Students move from Mastering Math Skills in upper elementary school, to Mastering Math Skills in Middle and Highschool.  Then they progress to Mastering Essential Maths Skills in Pre-Algebra Concepts and then to No-Nonsense Algebra.

Rick Fisher has also developed award winning online math courses in Basic Math, Advanced Math, Pre-Algebra, Algebra through his AmericasMathTeacher.com website.

Be sure to check out all of the great Math curriculum resources that Rick Fisher has created at Math Essentials and Americas Math Teacher.

FREE Resources

Rick Fisher offers a 14 Days Free Trial for his America’s Math Teacher online math courses.  Be sure to check it out if you are interested in seeing his teaching style, or if you are interested in an online math course.

Social Media

Be sure to check out the social media links for all the latest news and product updates.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/math.essentials/

Homeschool Review Crew

Be sure to check out what others on the Homeschool Review Crew had to say about using this product with their families.

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CTC Math for Homeschoolers Review

What is our favorite Math curriculum?  After using this math curriculum for 1.5 years, I can honestly tell you we love the 12 Month Family Plan for Homeschoolers from CTC MATH.

CTC Math

If you have you ever wished for a math teacher for your kids that you could understand then CTC Math is the answer. Their curriculum is a virtual math teacher / tutor that is available to come right into your home and help you and your kids master math 24/7!  We were sent a subscription to the 12 Month Family Plan For Homeschoolers to try out and tell folks everywhere about this program.  My kids math skills have improved a lot using this program.

CTC MATH for Homeschoolers 12 Month Family Plan

Unlimited online access of over 1,367 teaching videos, and 57,000 questions and activities, for up to 10 students, 24 hours a day / 7 days a week to all lessons and all grade levels K-12 for one affordable family price!

CTC Math Classes

Currently this great resource is on sale for homeschool families with 2 or more students for $118 a year. (It normally runs $297.  This current sale is 60 % off and saves you $178 which is a huge savings!) Check out the website for single student use and other pricing options too.

The virtual math teacher is Pat Murray from Australia.  He speaks English with an Australian accent, and is easy for kids and adults to understand.

Video of how CTC Math for Homeschoolers works:

How we used CTC Math For Homeschoolers In Our Home:

We were thrilled to be chosen to review this fantastic curriculum.   All of my school aged kids are using it. We fell in love with CTC Math a year and a half ago, and have stayed with it.  When our yearly subscription ran out, the kids literally cried.  We start the academics of our school day everyday with CTC Math.

We are currently using it in K, 1st, 4th, 6th, and 8th grades.  It’s hard to believe that five of our six kids are school age now.  We love this math curriculum and don’t want to miss anything even if it is review, so we chose not to test out of any sections, and worked through the lessons one by one even if it was reviewing a concept they already knew.   I usually ask the kids to complete at least one, and often two lessons a day.  The lessons are short, and they can easily complete a lesson in about 20 minutes or less. So doing two lessons, gives them about 30 to 40 minutes of good math instruction and practice each day.  I receive reports from the program when the kids have achieved various levels in a section: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum, and weekly updated summary reports too. I can choose to save the reports to my computer, or print them out and put them in my kids portfolio, and also print out the kids certificates too.

My oldest is 14 and is working through the 8th grade level.  Last year he reviewed the 6th grade level, then progressed through the 7th grade and now is finishing up the 8th.  I am so proud of his accomplishments.   Last year it was his idea to go back through the 6th grade math level as a review first to be sure he had a good handle on it before he moved ahead.  He wanted to spend more time on certain skills to develop more confidence.  By going back and reviewing the previous level, he gained a strong grasp of division, fractions, and skills he was struggling in before.   He likes using the Speed Skills Practice challenges to improve his skills.  He loves to work on improving his score and doesn’t mind redoing the assignments to improve his grade.

He is mastering the lessons and gets an average of 95% to 100%.  He can get a bit upset with himself if he gets anything below this level and really tries hard to understand and do a good job on the lessons.   One great thing about this program is that the kids can repeat the lesson questions and bring up their average scores on each lesson. So if he got 90% the first time, and then re-did the lesson and got 95% his second time, and 100% his third time, then his average score for the lesson rises to 95%. He usually scores high his first time through and doesn’t need to repeat it, because the teacher / tutor explains the lesson so well. But I have seen him get a 97% and want to raise his average and retake the lesson two more times. So 97%, then 100%, and 100% raises his overall score to 99%. He loves this opportunity to raise his score!

Video Lesson PreAlgebra: Learning to Calculate the Volume of a Cube.

My 6th grader also works independantly with CTC Math.   This son went through a big maturing process last year.  Schoolwork used to be a chore, but he likes it now.  He processes information differently than his older brother, and it takes him longer.  He used to get frustrated easily and would give up.  So it has been a huge challenge for me to help him master some of the skills.  Thankfully we have gotten over that hurdle and he is motivated to do his schoolwork.  He does very well with a combination of the video (he is an audio visual learner) instruction plus writing to learn concepts.  He started reading well last year, and is doing better at remembering details, paying attention, and with all these skills coming together, his math grades and all his skills showed huge improvements.  Last year when we first got CTC Math, it was and still is the answer to my prayer for this son!  He is just as proud of his grades in math as I am.  He tells me “Mom, look what I did, I got a 90%.” or “Mom, I love how the teacher explains this one, look I got a 100% on this lesson!”. He is very proud of himself and I am too. His average scores range from 80% to 90%! He pauses the video for each problem and writes the math problem down on paper and work it out before he works it out on the computer screen.  HE GETS IT!  He has improved so much!

Video Lesson 4th Grade: Learning Grid Coordinates.

My son in the 4th grade is also doing very well with CTC Math and school in general.  This is a huge improvement for him as he doesn’t like to sit still very long.  He wants to play, or build, or go outside if the weather permits.  He is working at grade level in CTC Math, watches the videos, completes 1 or 2 lessons a day depending on his mood, etc., but does not like going back and repeating the lesson questions if he didn’t pass.  This has remained consistent since the beginning.  He doesn’t want to repeat the lesson if he doesn’t score high enough.  I want him to repeat the lesson until he understands the concept.  So we struggle with this sometimes.  In CTC Math, you don’t pass the lesson unless you reach a score of 80% correct or more. His scores range from 70% to 95% correct. He does not want to go back and repeat the lessons he did not get a passing grade on. It is just not his personality and he is not motivated by this method.  His two older brothers love this opportunity to improve, but this son sees it as a form of torture to make him try again, and he would rather not. He is doing well with reading the questions, but if he doesn’t pay attention to the video instruction, he misses how to apply the method to solve the problem.  Since starting the program, I have wished there was a button we could push, and the virtual teacher could read the problem to him, and perhaps there be a back button he could click that would instantly go back over that portion of the lesson.  This would be a great help to struggling readers and for audio learners.  Overall, he likes using CTC Math and is learning a lot of math concepts and skills, but he doesn’t care what the score is.

My son in K completed his K level and moved up into 1st grade level a few months ago.  He is showing maturity in math skills, and sitting still to learn lessons, and moves along pretty quickly. He actually begs to get on the computer to complete his CTC Math lesson.  My daughter is also working in 1st grade level and moves at a slower pace than her brother.  This curriculum is so nice because it lets each child move along at their own pace.

Video Lesson 1st Grade: Recognizing 3D Objects

I am thankful for this opportunity to use this curriculum.  With the 12 Month Family Plan, our whole family can use this curriculum for one affordable price.  We can have up to 10 students using it at the same time.  Wow!  We have never had such a great curriculum resource so easily accessible and adaptable for everyone in our whole family!

All of my kids and I think this math curriculum is really AWESOME!  Though it is not fun and games, it is still fun because it challenges you to get better and reach your goal.  it is serious math instruction.

I would encourage homeschool families to check it out and see if it meets their needs too. I think CTC Math would be a great resource for college students to review and improve their math skills too. It sure would have helped me get through college Math 101 and 102 if I had a resource such as this.

Social Media:

Be sure to follow CTC Math for news, updates, and information:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ctcmath
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/CTCMath/videos

CTCmath Review

Be sure to check out what other homeschool families on the TOS Review Crew had to say about using CTC Math in their homes.

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