If you’re in the throes of attempting to teach middle school math, you have my sympathy — and my empathy because I’m right there with you. So let me share one of my secrets to maintaining everyone’s sanity: MasterMath.
Created and developed by Stan Lisle, MasterMath Middle School On-Line Math offers:
- video lessons arranged by grade and quarter
- downloadable/printable worksheets with answer sheets
- online quizzes
- links to other sites for further practice and explanation
- quarterly exams
- and a final exam at the end of each year
— all for free. Let me say that again: MasterMath is FREE.
At the heart of MasterMath are the video lessons, which are based on Florida Middle School Math Benchmarks and taught by Mr. Lisle. Each lesson focuses on one concept. During the video, the student has the opportunity to pause the video for the “You Try It” problems to practice what she is learning. The worksheet(s) and quizzes reinforce what she has learned. For more practice, there are Cool Links for each lesson, linking to such sites as Khan Academy or IXL.
The home page features a short video, “How to Use the MasterMath Video Lessons.” The website also has a Homeschool page, which offers information for homeschooling families and how best to use MasterMath as a complete mathematical curriculum. Mr. Lisle’s blog is another source for math study ideas and information. Right now, his blog features a series specifically for home educators. He also graciously offers his email address for specific questions. And if you’re interested, Mr. Lisle provides online tutoring as well.
To give you an idea of the program, sixth grade lessons are divided into four quarters with between seven and nine lessons in each quarter. Lessons include “Multiplying Fractions and Mixed Numbers” and “Fraction-Decimal Equivalency.” Other sixth-grade topics include percentages, ratios, rates, and geometry. A Cool Link for the multiplying fractions and mixed numbers lesson is “Converting Mixed Numbers to Fractions” on the Math Goodies website.
In a nutshell, I appreciate MasterMath’s focus on mastering mathematical concepts; links to other websites (now I don’t have to search out supplemental resources myself!); the video-based format; AND the price. Another great thing: you can use MasterMath to aid and supplement your child’s math studies no matter what curriculum you use!
All of this adds up to great news for those of us nervously facing middle school math — for the second time around. With MasterMath at my fingertips, I’m feeling pretty sure I can handle this stuff. (And I’m confident my children will do well, too!)
Written by Ellen