Elementary Math

Hi! I’m torn between Singapore and Rightstart. Can you tell me why you prefer one over the other? Thank you!

I have just switched from Abeka to Singapore. I didn’t dislike Abeka Math, but I didn’t love it, either. I looked online at a number of websites talking about Singapore and Math-U-See as well as other math curricula (including RightStart). I was drawn to Math-U-See because of the manipulatives. My daughter is very hands-on and likes to fiddle with stuff. I was drawn to Singapore Math because of the results in higher standardized test scores. (I don’t care about that as much as my husband does.)

I also asked several people at a used book sale about their opinions. Most ladies were rather wishy-washy in their opinions and didn’t seem totally committed to anything in particular. I mostly wanted someone to tell me they loved their math curriculum (whether it was Singapore, Math-U-See, or something else). I finally talked to a lady who is a self-proclaimed math junkie and has an engineering background. She LOVES Singapore because it helps the student not only with math skills but also applying the math skills. She said that when she was a new college student, she lacked applied math skills or knowledge which hurt her somewhat in her engineering field (at first). Also, Singapore Math helps the student to learn to think mathematically. It’s too early to tell what field my daughter will go into, but I like that this should give her a very strong foundation in math should she go into some math- or science-related field.

My daughter is in second grade, and I put her in the 1B (USA edition) level. She likes the manipulatives (multi-link cubes especially) and I think she likes the workbook and textbook. So far, it’s going well. There’s nothing super new at this point, just a slightly way of teaching and thinking. Some parts are too easy, but it’s different enough that she’s not super bored.

I just asked her, and she says she loves it. Then she ran off, so I didn’t get an elaborate response from her.

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I love both of these! I would recommend if possible to get your hands on used one and see what your child thinks. If not possible i totally understand! So, i purchased the Arithmetic kit so we could try out the abacus and this style. Rightstart is going to be better for a child who likes to use their hands. But! I really like it because it isn’t just manipulative. Ie. When they introduce numbers to a child they want you to show them the number, represent It on the abacus, and go find items around the house to show quantities. Its a combination between workbook and hands on.
Singapore is really wonderful and you can purchase some manipulative to assist you but it isn’t really apart of the Curriculum like others. It’s a workbook based curriculum. I do like the flow. It does less memorization of facts and more conceptual thinking. There are a lot of cute pictures (which can be distracting for some kids).
I do not think you can go wrong with either one! I always said I wish I started my son out on rightstart because he loves the abacus and the balance between hands on and workbook.

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So, this is gonna sound like I’m ignoring your question and just talking about other programs you didn’t mention, but I’ll get there, because we do use Right Start and I think comparing it to other stuff we’ve used is helpful.

I have a struggling learning…he’s ADHD and struggles with everything, especially rote memory stuff, but things that are very visual and/or hands on help. So I started with Math U See. I loved the way they taught place value and their manipulatives, but I felt like each chapter had to be translated…like it was paragraphs of stuff to read through and re-write in notes to get a simple lesson plan script, and we had a defunct VCR so I couldn’t just use the videos. Once we got to addition it sort of fell flat.

Then I found Addition Facts that Stick/Subtraction Facts that Stick and LOVED THEM. So simple, very visual and games based. Made learning the math facts so much more doable. At the time they didn’t have anything past that (now they have mutliplication and division), so I asked around for something similar and people overwhelmingly suggested RightStartMath. So far I’ve ONLY used it really for teaching arrays, and a little bit for reinforcing/practicing addition and subtraction, but I like it so far. It’s slightly more complex than the Addition Facts/Subtraction Facts (just because the “Facts” only had a lesson followed by playing the same math game for a week…so after the first day, each was all practice with nothing new to set up or learn. Right Start covers more concepts so you’re doing more each day but it’s still fairly easy to follow. I don’t feel like I have to do a lot of prep.).

Right Start is very hands on, which I like.

Never really looked into Singapore much.

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So we started out with Math u See and I also love the way it teaches place value, then I got lazy and didn’t want to teach (I was a newbie) and expected my kids to just watch the videos and get it at the first try, so I ruined it and switched to Singapore. We’re going into 4a now and it’s good. You should use the Home instructor guide along with manipulatives they suggest. The HIG has games and tons of hands on activities for you to use, it really makes a difference for kids who need to see or play with math to understand it. I also use the right start abacus, balance and games Book. With my third we’re going with rightstart all the way, just because I feel it will be easier to teach as I’m not mathy myself and need the hand holding that it offers. I also have the AL activities book, this can be used alone as a curriculum and was in fact the first one they offered before she expanded into levels and such. It’s super in expensive compared to the whole level kits, but is very simple to use.

I’d day if you have the time, right start is a great option. If you want more of a workbook approach, choose Singapore, keeping in mind that to teach the whole is use the HIG and play all the games with it.

Go with your gut, I’ve just learned that and we’re going into our 6th year of homeschooling! Hahahah

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You’re experience ghcostafamily with Math U See sounds so much like mine. Loved place value, but they lost us after that.