|Grades: K-8||Calvert Math|
Calvert Math is a spiral curriculum, containing a textbook, workbook, teacher's manual and manipulatives. The workbook is colorful and clearly designed with plenty of writing space.
It is a spiral curriculum: the lessons introduce a concept, and students practice it, combining the new material with previously learned skills.
The teacher's guide has the objectives, materials, warm-up, and skill development for the lessons, and even includes games.
Each Calvert Math course includes a textbook, workbook, Lesson Manual, and grade-appropriate supplies, such as counting blocks, punch-out manipulatives, a compass, or a protractor.
Pricing: Grades K-8 Math course tuition $255, Algebra $326.
Reviews of Calvert Math curriculum
Time: 4 years off and on
Your situation: I have to bright children who enjoy math. One was burned out from Saxon and beginning to hate math. The other needed more challenge and fun than her previous drill and kill program (Horizons).
Why you liked/didn't like the curriculum: We are again using Calvert Math for grades 4 and 6. In the younger years, it seems easy and there is not a lot of drill. However, please note that starting in 3rd grade there are Cumulative Reviews and Cumulative Tests. Also, the teacher's manual, which some people seem to think is optional, includes Warm Ups which are almost always Review.
It's interesting for me because we also used Saxon for 3 years, and this is a very different approach. Calvert School, the education counselors and the manuals, are always stressing never to drill, drill, drill. They always suggest that you pay attention to your child's needs and fit the curriculum to match the child. The cumulative reviews serve this purpose. If your child misses a concept on the Review, stop for a day and give him a few pages from his Practice book in that skill. Simple as that.
Calvert also includes a LOT of critical thinking and discussion. Both of my children are challenged to actually understand how and when to use the math they are learning.
One thing that is lacking is drill in the 4 operations. Calvert has suggestions for this (which you will know about if you USE the manual.)... but I just give my kids a 3 minute drill every day from an online worksheet generator. This is fun and easy. You could also copy their drill worksheets, included in the manual.
It is very interesting and colorful. This is a spiral concept program but it does not have daily incremental review like Saxon. Instead it has Mixed review 3 times per week plus a cumulative review every other week, and review with the teacher in the warm-up.
Any other helpful hints: 1.USE the manual.
2.For 6th-8th grades, use the online lessons. They are well done.
3.Don't do the practice book every day. It's too much. Use it for review, as necessary or reinforcement if your child needs extra help.
3. CALL the ed counsellors whenever you have ANY problem or question. They have a million ideas, and they are friendly. They will even talk to your kids!
Review left May 10, 2013
Time: 1 year
Your situation: We decided to try Calvert Math just because it came with our Calvert curriculum. I had read all the main math programs, and had used Saxon, Horizons and Abeka, and even 1 year of Singapore. My older son thrived with Saxon, but for this child, Calvert has been a hit! She LOVES math and she is doing great.
Why you liked/didn't like the book: Calvert math is a bit easy in the earlier grades but ramps up in 3rd grade. It is full color with cute, clear illustrations on almost every page. It is clear and uncluttered, and it includes a lot of critical thinking. The manual is essential (see below). It comes with tons of practice pages and plenty of extra practice. (we don't find that we need the extra practice in the enrichment book often.) It's interesting and fun!
However, it does not include daily drill. I just added 2nd Grade Kumon Addition and 2nd grade Kumon Subtraction to solve that.
Unless you have a child that needs to review constantly, this is a great math program.
Any other helpful hints: Hint: This is NOT a spiral curriculum! THis is definitely mastery with periodic review. If you used the book alone, you would miss 40% of the review that is built in, in the manual and the manual does not use the book in order, making the review pages much more useful Therefore, use the manual!
Review left Janury 29, 2012
Time: 9 months|
Your situation: Homeschooled using Calvert.
Why you liked/didn't like the book: Like: Lots of practice with the workbook, and the supplementary review book.
Colorful, and engaging.
What I do NOT like:
Thematic so kids forget one concept as they touch on say, fractions, and then dont do them again until the next year.
Moves far too slowly for my child, who is bright at math. We have to do 3 lessons a day, and add extra workbooks.
Too much money and estimation, not enough word problems.
Learning the times tables is "extra" work, you practice multiplication, but memorisation has to be an extra task onto the day.
The teachers guide is quite useless.
Any other helpful hints: This course might be better for those who find math more challenging.
Review left May 18, 2011
Time: 6 years|
I have used Calvert on three of my children over the span of 6 years. I have tried other math curriculums (Singapore and Horizon). I always came back to Calvert. My kids love having their own workbook that is colorful. I love that you get twice as much practice having the workbook and textbook. In 4th grade you have a hardcover textbook, which is easier to reuse than K-3. Each concept is built upon, yet just a touch of review each lesson. I like that they are strong on word problems. As far as not having enough mastery on memorization, that can be built in. The teachers manual does not always remind you to reinforce multiplication facts or use the timed tests in the back of the book.
I will use this again for my 4th child when she is ready to start. Only problem that I will have is finding a high school program since they only go to 8th grade and an Algrebra course.
Why you liked/didn't like the book: It is a good solid program and the kids will come out of it with a strong foundation and the ability to understand the concepts.
Any other helpful hints: There is a lot of work between the textbook and workbook. Use it all if you child needs it. Calvert assigns it all in one day, where I use the workbook as review a couple of days later to make sure they understand the concept. It is a little high in cost but compared to what you get plus the online games that go along with each lesson - I think it is worth it!
Review left July 8, 2010
Time: one year|
I homeschool my two boys, ages 5 and 7. My son used Saxon math while in public school but we found it too boring and frustrating to use in our home school.
I like that the books are bright and colorful, this exhilarates my children rather than distract them. I also like that the directions are written in a way that is easy for my 7-year old to read and understand on his own. My children LOVE the computer games that available for extra practice through MyCalvert.
Any other helpful hints:
Look up different ways to teach a concept if Calvert's directions for teaching a concept seem a bit confusing. This has happened to me a couple of times. In order to tailor certain aspects of the program to your family's needs, like with any other homeschool product, you just have to get a little creative from time to time.
Review left March 17, 2010
Time: 3 years
I have two boys (11 & 10). They've used the 5-7th grade Calvert math books and really benefited from them. They are strong on word problems and the basics (although I agree with a previous review the "estimation" questions get too much attention. The books come with quality tests on every chapter as well as an equally good workbook should you need/want extra word problems or the equations. They have good (optional) questions in them for gifted kids that really stretch their minds. The price is a bit high, but I think the presentation of the book makes it appealing. I've also received help from their "help line" when I run into problems. On a scale of 1-10, I'd give Calvert Math a 8-9. I would like more built in review, but as a parent/teacher, I can also work that in myself. I am planning on using the Calvert 8th grade text. I looked at Singapore Math for the 7th & 8th grade texts, but found them rather sterile compared to the 1-6th grade books, which I also think are excellent but not as good as Calvert. Oh, the teacher's manual is also very helpful. I will use Calvert math again when my 3 year old is old enough. Hope this review helps you out.
Why you liked/didn't like the book:
I like it for its thoroughness, word problems, presentation, tests, help from the company, and for good explanations.
I don't like the price. $50-75 would be better.
They also do a free test to determine your child's math level. They don't just give you the math for your child's age, they give you the math for your child's level.
Any other helpful hints:
Have your child take the test to determine his/her level.
Homeschooled daughter using Calvert School of Baltimore, MD from K-5 & 7th grades. Why you liked/didn't like the book:
The materials seem adequate, but I would not recommend them as superior. There is no emphasis on automaticity of basic math facts. Estimation is used throughout the series. The books do not speak to the student.
Any other helpful hints:
I liked using playing cards to develop computational speed. Divide a card deck in half. The teacher places the first card, then the student plays a second card. The teacher says the sum or product. Then the teacher plays a card and the student does the same. Alternating, the entire deck is used. Doesn't help with the Calvert math, but it is fun.
Martha de Forest
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