Homeschooling Math

posted in: Math | 0

Saxon Math products are the best homeschooling math books hands down.  Each “kit” comes with a textbook, answers, tests, and test key (answers).  You don’t really need the solutions manuals for the kits up to Algebra 1 or 2, but Saxon has them for separate purchase if you need that extra “help”.  (If in doubt, buy them anyway because they may update to a new edition and make the old solutions manual unavailable.)  When you get up to Algebra 2, Advanced Math, and Calculus, you will need the solutions manual no matter how gifted you are in math.  The solutions manuals give a step by step solution to various problems.  Typically it will show only one or two problems in detail and then the following ones, which may be similar, will have a shorter solution.

Here are some useful Saxon Math links.

  1. Saxon Homeschool Products Catalog
  2. Saxon Algebra 1/2 Homeschool Packet Program
  3. Saxon Albebra 1 Homeschool Packet Program
  4. Saxon Algebra 2 Homeschool Packet Program
  5. Saxon Geometry Homeschool Packet Program
  6. Saxon Advanced Mathematics Homeschool Packet Program
  7. Saxon Calculus Homeschool Packet Program

The Saxon Homeschool Resource Center also has samplers of their upper grade math products, a good way to get a look at what’s inside each kit at each level.

  1. Saxon Math Upper Grades 4th Edition Sampler
  2. Saxon Math Upper Grades 3rd Edition Sampler

The General Saxon Homeschool Resource Center has links to placement tests, online activities, math facts, and textbook corrections.

The placement tests will help you place your child at the correct level of Saxon Math.

  1. Saxon Math Upper Grades Placement Tests
  2. Saxon Math Algebra 1 Placement Test
  3. Saxon Math Algebra 2 Placement Test

If you’re wondering how Saxon Math stacks up against public school math, you shouldn’t be surprised to know that they are light years ahead of public school textbooks and teaching.  The scientific research for the Saxon math framework is pretty impressive.

If you are intimidated by Math and are afraid you won’t be able to teach it, have no fear.  There are teacher demos at the Saxon Homeschool site to walk you through a typical lesson.  And upper grade level students usually do better doing the work on their own.  The more gifted students will go at their faster pace and the less math-inclined students can go at a slower pace.  As long as they know you are there to help them and answer questions, you’ll do fine.

One of the nicest things about Saxon Math’s new website is that they provide a complete Scope and Sequence page.  If you don’t know what Scope and Sequence is, it’s the summary of topics learned in a particular book or at a particular level.  You’ll need this if your kids are planning on attending college because it will be a part of their transcript.

  1. Saxon Math Algebra 1/2, Algebra 1, and Algebra 2 Scope and Sequence
  2. Saxon Math Advanced Math Scope and Sequence
  3. Saxon Math Calculus Scope and Sequence

Last but not least, as with any textbook or technical book, there are always corrections.  Saxon has an entire page devoted to Saxon Math Homeschool textbook corrections.

  1. Saxon Math Algebra 1 3rd Edition Textbook Corrections
  2. Saxon Math Algebra 2 3rd Edition Textbook Corrections
  3. Saxon Math Homeschool Algebra 2 3rd Edition Textbook Corrections

Note in the above PDFs with textbook corrections only one is actually a homeschool textbook.  Saxon now markets to public schools and private schools, so there are different editions of Saxon Math floating around.  Many homeschoolers end up buying Saxon Math books on eBay, which I do NOT recommend.  EBay sellers are notorious for selling “homeschool packets” that are nothing more than old test booklets with no answer key and no textbook.  Often the textbooks sold on eBay are not even homeschool editions but the public school editions.  If you can, get your Saxon Math books directly from Saxon.  If you can’t, try Amazon.  I would only try eBay as a very last resort.

If you’re wondering why I included PDFs and screenshots of so many materials, it’s because Saxon was bought out by Harcourt Publishers about nine years ago.  During the last nine years they have completely overhauled their website four times and each time, the placement tests and other materials completely disappeared from the website or the links did not work.  That’s very frustrating for those of us who purchased the entire series and expected to be able to go online and get the placement tests.  Already, many of the placement tests are gone.  If any of these links are not working, please leave a comment below and I will fix it as soon as I can.

Every four-year college in the United States requires a minimum of four credits of College Algebra to get a four-year degree. Engineering, life sciences, and other technical degrees require ten credits of Calculus.  That means your child will have to complete the prerequisites for Calculus before they can take college calculus.  If your kids complete the entire Saxon Calculus book before entering college, they should take the CLEP test and try to pass.  It costs around $100, but it’s well worth it.  College calculus can be grueling and the textbooks are notoriously bad.  Which reminds me–keep your textbooks until your kid has graduated college.  You’d be surprised how often they will refer to them while attending college and taking math, physics, life science, astronomy, and other science courses.

Originally published on March 16, 2013.


Leave a Reply