RightStart Mathematics

RightStart Mathematics

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RightStart Math

RightStart Mathematics uses the AL Abacus to provide a visual, auditory, and kinesthetic experience. The elementary and intermediate program lessons guide the teacher day-by-day and year-by-year, helping children understand, apply, and enjoy mathematics while surpassing state standards.

User reviews

14 reviews

 
(1)
4 stars
 
(0)
3 stars
 
(0)
2 stars
 
(0)
1 star
 
(0)
Overall rating 
 
4.6
Personal opinion 
 
4.5
Coverage of subject 
 
4.8
Ease of use 
 
4.0
Support 
 
5.0

We have just started using Right Start math and like it a lot so far.

Grade levels used
K
Pros
My kid loves it!
Do you recommend?
Yes
M
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This is one of those curriculum that was recommended to us by so many people, but for my kids it just totally bombed. I didn't care for the way anything was taught and my son was very confused by all the manipulatives and games. The main thing he did learn from it was using the abacus which I am thankful for , he has a great grasp of numbers because of this I feel. But for us it was not the right curriculum at all. I wanted it to work, it did not. Just too much for us.

Grade levels used
K
Pros
games, abacus
Cons
so many manipulatives, so expensive!
Do you recommend?
Not really
TM
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My kids argue over who gets to do math first. They love the games and working with me to find new strategies to solve equations. My mental math ability has greatly improved since I started teaching with RSM.

Grade levels used
  • preK
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Pros
Fun! Full math curriculum
Do you recommend?
Yes
LB
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Let me first say that I have always hated math my whole life. I started teaching RightStart math years ago with my 1st grader. This was amazing for her but especially for me! I finally understood numbers for the first time in my life! I was so excited! My husband is a mathematics genius so I was always intimidated by that and always wanted to be able to improve in this area. Through the lessons and the card games I very quickly picked up calculating totals in my head! He was impressed! I was proud. Win win! What about my daughter you ask? Oh, she is now in 10th grade and flying through any math she encounters! I would say it worked for her too.

Grade levels used
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
Pros
Super at getting number concepts in your head. Fun games that teach without them even realizing it.
Cons
Lots of hands on for teacher/mom. But not always a bad thing.
Do you recommend?
Yes
DH
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I wish I would have known about this when my two oldest were younger, but it has been a blessing for my youngest who was crying every time we used a previous curriculum! Now she is understanding math in a much deeper way, I believe, than my oldest did at this level.

Grade levels used
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Pros
Easy to use, clear explanation of new concepts
Do you recommend?
YES!!
WJ
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My kids & and I loved this curriculum. I recommend it to everyone. My son completed all levels except The Geometric Approach. He started in Saxon 7/6 two months before his 4th grade year was up. He just now finished it two months before his 5th grade year was up and has started Saxon 8/7. He made a 95% in Saxon 7/6. He was only able to move onto higher level math and do so well because of the awesome foundation that RightStart gave him. We still play the games at times to have fun and keep the mental math sharp and quick. My daughter is special needs and used Level B thru The Geometric Approach. It took her longer to do the lessons, but she understood them. She started in another program and was crying every day, "I hate math." I have a BSEE and an MBA and my husband has a BSEE, so we couldn't have her hating math. When we switched to RightStart part way into 1st grade she went from "hating math" to "loving math." I tried The Geometric Approach with her, but she just wasn't getting it. And I even tried some of the drawings and couldn't get what was asked. After a year of struggle and many more lessons still left in the book, we gave up and I vowed not to teach it to my next child. She did well in the geometry lessons, of the earlier books and has done well in the geometry lessons in Saxon, so I don't think it's her. She is now in high school and working thru Algebra 1. She's slow at it, but is making a low A. I know her understanding is because of the foundation of RightStart. And when things don't click, we just go back to the basics of RightStart and work up. We all love RightStart, except for The Geometric Approach.

Grade levels used
  • preK
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Pros
The best and only elementary math that makes math fun and easy to understand!
Cons
Needs an F version that works more on fractions and decimals. Geometric Approach needs a different approach, but all other levels are great!
Do you recommend?
Most definitely!
C
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This has been a WONDERFUL math curriculum for our family! The games and manipulatives make it very fun and provide excellent practice, the information is presented very simply and logically, and the content spirals back frequently so understanding is gained and built on beautifully. I don't always understand where we're going with something but always am amazed to see my son grasping the material. He is gaining such an excellent conceptual understanding of math and I am thrilled! I recommend this to people all the time! It's expensive initially, but it is an investment in my kids for life and it's worth every penny! The lessons are scripted so of course the teacher has to be there but it's not difficult for the teacher.

Grade levels used
K
Pros
Fun, solid instruction, excellent customer support, manipulatives
Cons
price
Do you recommend?
Enthusiastically YES!
C
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I LOVE this math product! When it was demonstrated to me at a homeschool conference, I felt like i could actually see the equation. Being dyslexic and having learning disabilities, this math was something that I understood perfectly. Unfortunately, I ended up selling it not long after I got it. It wasn't that I didn't understand it, or that I didn't like it. I just couldn't teach it. There was a huge mental block between my understanding and my being able to teach it.
I don't think that this would happen to the average mom. This product is very visual and hands on. Very easy to understand. I recommend it!
We still use and love the math games.

Grade levels used
5
Pros
Wonderfully well presented
Cons
See comments
Do you recommend?
Yes
AA
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I cannot say enough good things about Rightstart math. The curriculum gives children a solid foundation in math. That foundation has helped my daughter make connections in much higher level math that she shouldn't understand as of yet. Rightstart uses card games for review. The games are a lot of fun and help my children review concepts without realizing they are doing math.

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
Pros
Hands on, fits all learning styles,
Cons
Teacher intensive
Do you recommend?
Yes
C
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I've used levels A-E of RightStart Math, and I have been very pleased. The curriculum excels in helping children grasp the concepts behind the calculations and instills a very strong understanding of how numbers work. The sequence is different from traditional math programs, but it makes sense and works well. At times the book seems to jump randomly from one topic to another, seemingly unrelated, but I discovered that if I just followed along, eventually it made sense. The program uses the trademark card games for review, which my boys both enjoyed, and the games allowed them to master their basic facts with no fuss and lots of fun. There were many times when my sons made conceptual leaps to new ideas before they were officially introduced because of the foundational understanding laid in RightStart. Highly recommended.

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
Pros
Excellent focus on concepts, hands-on
Cons
Teacher-intensive
Do you recommend?
Yes
HK
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I've had the RightStart Math Games set for about 4 years now, and it's one of the best math supplements we own. We play the card games at least once a week, and the Abacus is one of my son's prized possessions. I like the fun aspect of RightStart, and the way they do hands-on activities to teach kids the concrete parts of math before moving on to abstractions.

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Do you recommend?
yes
AK
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I have used RS for years and totally believe in this program. It did take me a few weeks to find my groove as the teacher and understand this new way of looking at math but once I learned (and going through it now a second time with my daughter) I have no problems teaching it.
It is time consuming though. There isn't much, especially in the younger grades, to have the kids do independently. Mom is there the whole time. As the kids get older there are practice sheets they can do on their own.
This program is worth the effort though. Even my understanding of numbers has increased with teaching it.

Grade levels used
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
Pros
Teaches an understanding of math and not just rote memory of concepts.
Cons
Time consuming for parent.
Do you recommend?
Yes
K
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I used Right Start math for both my kids for several year in a row. After pulling our daughter out of public school starting her 3rd grade year I realized she was going to need a lot of help in math. Right Start has been great. The way they teach math concepts is so smart and actually easier than how they were teaching her in public school. If you use all the manipulatives that go along with the curriculum it becomes fun and visual which is what my daughter needed. My son on the other hand who gets math was also able to use the curriculum and not feel like it was too easy which was good.

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Pros
Hands on, Teaches concepts really well, great manipulatives
Do you recommend?
Yes
NP
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Overall rating 
 
4.6
Personal opinion 
 
4.5
Coverage of subject 
 
5.0
Ease of use 
 
4.0
Support 
 
5.0

I was a bit of a math-a-phobe. I had never done well in math during my own schooling and it was the subject that caused me the most anxiety when thinking of teaching my own sons. First off I tried finding the one math program with no negative reviews at all, after reading about dozens of different options, I came to the conclusion this program doesn't exist. :) So I tried looking at why programs worked or didn't work for families and chose on the basis of what I think would be the best match for us. Right start taught conceptually not just memorizing algorithms, that was important. It was hands on learning, not worksheet based, and that was important too. What really sold me on the program though was that when I was researching it and reading the materials on it available, I was learning myself. In explaining what and why they teach as they do, lightbulbs started going off for me and I found myself understanding concepts in a way I never had before. Math started to become interesting and fun for me, and if this program could change my attitude that way, I figured it would be a great one to start out my children's formal math learning experience.

So far so good, I have one child using Level A - we enjoy our math time and he is definitely learning. I like that when a concept isn't clear to him, we can "sit on" the lesson for a while by playing the related games - thus practice is not drudgery, or a battle. There are some things to get used to as this is very different than the way I was taught math, so remembering to be diligent about using the abacus and encouraging subsidization (knowing the amount just by looking) rather than counting takes a while to practice. He is excited about math and gaining an ability to understand how and why numbers work. Since the teacher outline is clearly laid out with what the the child is to be learning and doing with each activity, it is also easy to do any tweeking that may need to happen - i.e. skipping over something that is clearly understood or spending more time on something that is not yet grasped.

The only cons I can think of are:

1) The amount of teacher involvement - I am ok with it, but I only have one younger sibling to contend with - with multiple ages this may be more difficult. However, a math professor I really respect (a homeschooling mom also) said that to truly build math skills math teaching does need to be teacher intensive in the early years - later when building on the foundation, it is easier to have a less teacher intensive curriculum. I have heard that the older grades in Right Start are easier for students to self direct. You can also have multiple ages/stages practicing playing the games together and limit the time of the lesson that you need to be leading. So each child would get 20 minutes of instructor interaction and then stop that part of the lesson, even if that means stopping part way through the lesson outline. It is easy to pick up the next day and continue on. I know of many parents who use the program that way.

2) Costs- It is expensive to start with, especially with all the manipulatives. However, you do use the manipulatives throughout the enter program, so the per year cost declines and the per child cost too. It also resells well and if you want the first edition, you can buy it used.

3) Some children may not enjoy using manipulatives and games - this would not be a program that would suit their learning style.

Grade levels used
  • preK
  • K
Pros
Teaches the underlying concepts of Math, Is games based and fun, The Teacher Manual outlies what you are teaching and why, No traditional Worksheets
Cons
Very Teacher Intensive, Expensive
Do you recommend?
Highly Reccomend
D
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