Weapons of Math Destruction


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OK, so you're not sure if your child has fuzzy math radiation poisoning and how far behind he or she may be. Here's a list of medications to administer to ensure your child is able to recover.

Start by printing out a Singapore math assessment test for your child to take. Consult this placement guide first to determine which test to start with for elementary students. If your child gets above 80% on the exam you chose to start with, move up a level. If your child scores lower, step down a level or two until you find where your child scores above 80%. The New Elementary and New Syllabus series' covers grades 7-10.

Placement Tests can be found by clicking here. For Saxon placement tests, try calling them at 800-284-7019.

Once you determine if your child needs some extra help to catch up to standard levels of math, there's several courses of action to take.

1) Speak with your child's teacher and/or principal and see if they offer remedial help or can accelerate your child's coursework. (cheapest option)

2) Start supplementing at home (modest expense-see below)

3) Get in with a local tutor or center such as Sylvan (more expensive for professional help)

If you determine you want to help your child at home, there's several ways to go. To make sure your child has all the basics down, go to a local store and purchase flashcards for all the items your child should have down solidly. A very basic approach to this is addition for 1st grade, subtraction for 2nd, multiplication for 3rd, and division for 4th. There's also some fun games you can purchase to help with your child's progression listed below.

A couple of the most popular home schooling programs that contain solid math and learning are Singapore and Saxon math. Singapore math workbooks are well laid out and very visual. If you've got a "math-head" in your family, he or she can probably just help your child learn what your child needs without purchasing extra books. If you'd like something more in the way of a full course, you can purchase home schooling products to go with Singapore, or try Saxon math. Both programs are top notch and will have your child at international standard grade levels for math.

Products to help your child enjoy learning


  • Singapore Math CD's -- Excellent grade level computer math games for grades 1-6
  • I'm always on the lookout for good math related software.  Earlier this year I found a program that looked interesting but I didn't try it out for some reason.  Last week I installed the program on my kids' computer and got my 8 year old playing it.  Two days later she said, "dad, do I have to do this program for my math everyday now?" Trying to sound positive I said, "yeah, sure."  She quickly said, "thanks dad" and loaded it up.  Weird, but true. :)

    There are two versions of this software.  The free version, and then a paid version which adds cooler environments to the game to keep it more visually appealing.  Either way, I recommend you check it out for any of your kids that are working on their multiplication tables.  Once you're on the site, click the "How to Play" link at the top for an in-depth video tour of the product.

    Click Here for Timez Attack (www.bigbrainz.com)

Cool math games for kids and adults

  • Mathino-This is a product that I was so impressed with, I flew to Chicago to meet Marsh Kaminsky to help market the game. It's a pretty fast playing game that engages children's minds in a way that makes them want to master math. If you're skeptical, check out Marsh's story on the front page of the site, and watch a video on the site on how a player is creating their own 4 step math problem in their head...WILLINGLY! :)
  • Mythmatical Battles Card Game (recommended by Core Knowledge)--This is an excellent game for children that brings out basic math facts. The cards use multiplication symbols but if you have children that haven't learned to multiply yet, just pretend they're addition problems on the cards and they'll have a lot of fun as well.

Online Sites-Games





Do you like awesome birthday party or holiday activities? Check out my product Riddle Me which lets you generate scavenger hunt clues to entertain your children for hours. Check out the blog for fun things like Halloween scavenger hunts, Christmas present treasure hunts, and Easter egg scavenger hunts.

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