Math Skills

UPDATE: See bottom of page for my new method of creating 5 A Days for my youngest kids who can’t use the Math Binder yet.

Each day we start by doing 5-10 math review problems using the 5-A-Day method from Math on the Level.  This method has improved the long term math memory of all my kids (and I meet very little resistance!).  Each child has a binder filled with worksheets of all the math topics they know.  In the top corner of each page is the “Concept Number” from Math on the Level.  I give them a sheet that lists 5 Concept Numbers; they find the pages with those numbers and work 1-2 problems on each page.  I take a few minutes prepping on Sunday evenings to check their work and make sure they are still accurate.  These are all problems they that know, and should never miss.  If they start to make errors, I pull those pages out of review and they go back into active work.

Sample Page from Math Binder: This page is for concept 11 (Adding Three or More Numbers)

Sample List of Problems: This page is a printout from the spreadsheet that comes with MOTL.  You can enter how often you want to review each topic (daily, every other day, weekly, etc), and it will create a schedule for you.  My son scratches out the Concept Number when he completes the problem.  You could also create your own list without too much work.

We also periodically work on math facts using games, apps, and 9’s Down fact sheets from Math on the Level.

Worksheets I use to create the math binders:

The Math Worksheet Site  (requires small fee for whole site access)
Challenge Masters (Choose Grade > Teaching Tools > Challenge Masters)
Math Worksheets 4 Kids
Homeschool Math
Worksheet Works
Math Master

Pre-Algebra Worksheets
Wolfram Alpha Algebra + Problem Generator (requires fee) Algebra Problem Generator

We are experimenting with Khan Academy for review.  It seems to hold my kids’ interest for a few days, but they usually prefer to go back to paper work.

An alternate way to create 5 A Days.  This method works best for younger children or those who are overwhelmed by the Math Binder.

1. Find a math worksheet site you like.  Several of our favorites are listed above.

2. Create and save as PDFs worksheets that cover your current review topics.

Screen Shot 2014-10-11 at 6.43.39 AM

Folder on my computer where I save worksheets for my 5 and 6 year olds.

3.  Open a new Word document.  Open the math worksheet PDFs you wish to pull problems from.

4.  Use the “Print Screen Selection” command on your computer to select the problem you want.

  • On a Mac, you press “Command – Shift – 4” and a selection tool will appear for you to select your area to save.  The screen shot will be saved on your desktop.
  • Windows has something called a “Snipping Tool” to allow you to do this same thing.  (Sorry, I don’t use Windows!).

5.  Import the saved screen shots into your Word document.

6.  On the worksheet PDF, mark out the problems you have used so you don’t use them again.  On a Mac, I use Preview to view my PDFs, so I use Tools>Annotate>Line to just cross out the problems I’ve copied.

Screen Shot 2014-10-11 at 6.52.21 AM

Problems marked out as I use them.

Once you get a feel for this, an even faster way to do it on a Mac is to use the “Command-Control-Shift-4” function to copy your problem directly from the PDF.  You can then paste it right into the Word document without needing to go find the screen shots.  If anyone knows of a similar function on Windows please comment!

Screen Shot 2014-10-11 at 6.54.15 AM

Final Product (Word document to print)


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