Thursday, June 18, 2015

Review: CTC Math

 Summer is here, and we are between grades in our homeschooling. After all the hard work we put into our studies this past year, I really don't want the girls to regress in their skills, especially math, as we take a break from formal studies for the summer. To help solve this dilemma, we recently had the privilege to review a 12 Month Family Plan from CTC Math. 

What is CTC Math? It is an online, web based math tutorial program that can be accessed from any computer or electronic device once you have an account set up. The program contains thousands of lessons, from early kindergarten through all the high school courses, such as algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and calculus. Lessons are divided by grade levels, and then further divided into 'streams' of subject matter. Once an account is set up, students have access to all grade levels and materials, so they can work and advance or review at their own pace.

How can it work for a homeschooling family? Once a plan is purchased, parents set up their student's log in accounts, and choose a grade or subject to begin working. Plans are available for single students or for a family plan, which gives separate log in accounts for up to ten students from the same family for one price!

Our Experience: I signed up Kelly for fifth grade work. Even though she just completed fourth grade, I wanted to test out the ability of this program with learning new concepts as well as reviewing old ones. She has done remarkably well with most of the fifth grade material. A typical day of work includes watching a short video presentation of a concept, then answering questions about it. There are separate sections for diagnostic testing, which we used to see if Kelly needed to study a particular section or could skip over it. There were several that she skipped over, because she demonstrated mastery on the diagnostic test.

This is a diagnostic test report for one of the sections. As you can see, the only area Kelly needed to work on was positive and negative numbers, so we skipped the other sections, and just worked on reviewing that particular concept.

Walking Through the program: 

Once they are logged in, the student's dashboard contains all the pertinent information showing what they have accomplished. It is extremely easy to navigate through the program. All scores are recorded and displayed. If the student has worked on the same concept multiple times, the average of their best three attempts is shown. This is great to eliminate the discouragement that comes when they don't do so well, and rewards their attempts at improvement.

The fifth grade material contains four "streams", each with numerous lesson sections in them. Students can pick and choose and lessons do not need to be done in any particular order. 

Lessons are colorfully illustrated and easy to follow. Most of the videos we have encountered this far have been under five minutes long, which makes it very easy to log in and work through one or several small lessons each day. As a math tutorial, it is easy to insert this into our life, and allow Kelly to review for about fifteen minutes a day.

Question pages at the end of the video demonstration are also simple to navigate, and easy to answer. In this illustration, Kelly needed to enter the answers into the blanks, submit them, and received immediate feedback.

There is also a speed skills section which helps the student practice basic math skills such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division in a fun way. During the school year we do math speed drills daily, so this was a big help to be able to keep Kelly continuing on sharpening her skills.

On the website, there is easy access to all the student's progress, allowing the parent to see which sections were attempted on which days, how many attempts were made, and what the grades were.

 There is also a very comprehensive weekly report that is emailed to the parent, that tracks exactly how much time was spent completing each activity.

The best part?? CTC Math is very generous with reward certificates, which are a great motivator for the students to keep striving for better grades and completion of lessons.

Here is a certificate that Kelly earned:

There are printable worksheets available for the upper level courses, but we did not use them since we didn't need them with the level of work that Kelly has been doing.

My overall opinion: I have really enjoyed using CTC Math! I think it is an extremely thorough program that is very user friendly, and also very home school friendly, since multiple students from one family can all use it for one subscription price. Some of the concepts have been reviewed or taught just a little differently than Kelly has learned them, but they are explained and illustrated so simply that she had no trouble at all following the lesson and answering the questions correctly. I am so happy to have this program to use to help Kelly review her math and stay sharp and focused in preparation for fifth grade this fall! I will continue to use this program to help her review concepts even during the school year, because she enjoys CTC Math so much.

CTC Math offers a FREE TRIAL to check out their program.

Connect with CTC Math on Facebook

100 members of the Old Schoolhouse Review Crew have been using CTC Math - read their reviews by clicking the banner below:

CTCmath Review

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1 comment:

  1. You picked great screen shots for this one! We too are really impressed with CTC in our family as well.


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