## Finishing Strong Starting Gently

Last week I talked about my somewhat unusual position of graduating my first homeschool student this spring, and starting my (presumably) last student in Kindergarten this coming fall. David, my senior, is a math natural. But teaching him math was not without struggles. In fact, there were many battles fought over math.These included getting him to write anything down and memorizing math facts. He did however consistently demonstrate understanding of mathematical concepts. He was able to study Calculus on his own in our homeschool last year using Life of Fred, but we decided to have him study Calculus again this year at the community college.

#### Thinking Mathematically

This post is still true for How I Chose Math Curriculum.

## Preschool and Kindergarten Math – Keep it Simple

With Andrew, I’m taking a similar approach to math as we are for reading. We are doing nothing formal, instead talking about numbers. He counts. He’s beginning to add. He’s even figured out how to add numbers when the sum is over 10 with his fingers. At this point, I plan on using the same Singapore and Miquon combo math that I used with the other children in elementary school.

#### About Preschool Printables

You know all those absolutely adorable preschool printables? It seems like every blogger has jumped on the free printable bandwagon. If you’re like me, you might be enticed by every cute and fun looking printable that crosses your inbox. Yes, you can use them if you want to. But no, you do not need them! I give you permission to ignore them. Really. I know it’s tough, but many of those take more time to prepare than they provide in value. Before you print, think about whether or not you can practice that skill orally or on a white board.

## What if my child doesn’t get math?

OK, I admit it. Everyone is not equally gifted in math. My ultimate goal is still mathematical understanding, but with my middle son, I’ve had to take a different approach.

I explain about it here in The Post Where I Admit I was Wrong.

## What I Hope to Do Differently

I have the same general plan for homeschool math for Andrew as I had for David. I plan to use programs that stress exploration and understanding. I do hope that I can encourage Andrew to memorize his facts better than David did, but I also hope to do so without all the tears. (Mainly shed by me!) Math is important, and I will make sure it gets done, but I think seeing the end will help me to be patient along the way.

Here’s last year’s post for the Virtual Curriculum Fair: If I Knew Then, What I Know Now.

To read more about how to homeschool math, check out these other posts in the Virtual Curriculum Fair.

Chareen @ **Every Bed of Roses** – Thoughts on Math and Science

Kristen @ **Sunrise to Sunset** – From Counting to Calculus

Laura @ **Day by Day in Our World** – How We Approach Math in This Homeschool Year

Annette @ **A Net In Time** – Struggling with Math, Loving Science

Annette @ **A Net In Time** – Lego Pulleys and Levers

Yvie @ **Gypsy Road** Hands – On Math with Special Needs Learners

Chelli @ **The Planted Trees** – Chemistry Using Living Books

Lisa @ **GoldenGrasses** – An Appalling Lack of Curiosity

Edie @ **Carter Chaos** – Our Favorite Ways to Study Numbers

Tracey @ **A Learning Journey** – Robot Area and Perimeter Art Project

Jennifer @ **A Glimpse of Our Life** – Math and Standardized Tests

Jen @ **Chestnut Grove Academy** – Discovering Patterns: Mathematics, Logic, and Science

Sarah @ **DeliveringGrace** – Learning Multiplication Tables

Kylie @ **Our Worldwide Classroom** – Multisensory Multiplication

Kym @ **Homeschool Coffee Break** – Science and Stuff

Kemi Quinn @ **Homemaking Organized** – Math in Our Homeschool for a Later Elementary Organized Reader

Joelle @ **Homeschooling for His Glory** – Math and Logic – Our Steady Path

Laura @ **Four Little Penguins** – Math and Science Love

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By Kristen H.

Oh I so agree with you in regards to preschool printables. They are darn cute but you don’t often need them!