10 Reasons We Love Teaching Textbooks

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There are people in the world who love math. They love the logic of it – the fact that there are right and wrong answers that don’t change depending upon the circumstances. You know like how spelling insists that it’s “i before e except after c,” then there are words like weird and caffeine. (Two of my favorite spelling-rule-breaking words, by the way.)

So there are those people who love math. Then, there are the rest of us – those who fall somewhere on the spectrum between hating math to tolerating it like a slightly annoying cousin who has a few redeeming qualities.

I don’t hate math, but I don’t love it. I do, however, love Teaching Textbooks! We began using Teaching Texbooks in 2009 when Brianna started pre-algebra. She and I liked it so much that Josh and Megan switched to it the following year.

10 Reasons We Love Teaching Textbooks

Want to know why we love Teaching Textbooks and enter to win one Teaching Textbooks set of your choice? Keep reading!

1. Individual math instruction for your kids without cloning yourself! This is the primary reason I decided to switch Josh and Megan to Teaching Textbooks when I did. They were getting to the point where they really needed individual instruction and, well, there was two of them and only one of me.

Because Teaching Textbooks is CD-ROM-based math instruction, it’s like having a math teacher available for each problem at each grade level – and the teacher isn’t me! That offers the added benefit of me being able to learn difficult concepts (once we hit algebra) alongside my kids rather than trying to figure it out with the teacher’s book and Google before I can teach them.

2. Kids can work independently. I’m not sure I need to say more here, but I will. Teaching Textbooks was designed specifically for homeschoolers and specifically for students to be able to work independently. Right from the beginning, each of my kids was able to sit down at the computer and do their math on their own. (Teaching Textbooks allows multiple students to use the same program on the same or different computers, though the correct lesson disk must be in the disk drive for use.)

When you’re in the middle of the mom-intensive years of homeschooling elementary students, that is a huge selling point!

3. Self-grading! Y’all. Seriously. Do I need to say more? All Teaching Textbooks are self-grading! (Pre-Calculus will be available in an automated-grading version August 2016.) Brianna did algebra before the self-grading version was out and let me just say that checking her math was high on my list of least-favorite things to do. When Josh started algebra I didn’t hesitate for a second in purchasing the 2.0 self-grading version even though we still had 1.0.

Students get immediate feedback on their answers and all you have to do is check the grade book. And you really do need to check it regularly because I’ve heard from lots of other parents that I was not alone in discovering that kids may just try to get away with not doing all of the problems if you don’t check the grade book. {ahem}

math for homeschoolers

4. Students get two chances on most problems. This allows a bit of leeway for careless mistakes (like forgetting to put in the negative sign, for example). True/false and multiple choice answers only allow one chance, so you don’t have to worry about your student guessing until he gets the problem correct.

5. Students (and their parents) can watch how to do the problems they missed. If students miss a problem twice, they have the option of watching it worked out, so they know why they missed it and how to do similar problems. The parent grade book will show you how many times they attempted a problem and if they watched it worked out.

6. Parents can reset single problems or the entire lesson. Teaching Textbooks allows parents to reset a single problem or the entire lesson from the parent grade book. That means that you can have your student correct the problems he missed or repeat the lesson if it was clear he didn’t understand it. You don’t just have to accept a poor grade and move on. Even though Teaching Textbooks is CD-ROM-based, it’s simple to use it to teach to mastery.

7. Teaching Textbooks includes a reasonable number of lessons – not 180, forcing you to do math every single school day so you don’t get behind or stress over the “do I finish the entire book before moving on” conundrum. Most levels contain somewhere in the neighborhood of 120-140 lessons with tests at the end of each chapter.

teaching textbooks math for homeschoolers

Yes, this is a terrible picture made with my old phone, but it cracked me up because Brianna actually liked some algebra problems. She’d stopped to help Josh with a problem and I just had to snap a “how many homeschoolers does it take…” photo.

8. Teaching Textbooks makes high-school level math less intimidating for math-phobic parents. I have been pleasantly surprised to discover that algebra isn’t nearly as difficult as I remembered it – usually. Math-phobic parents can relax, knowing that Teaching Textbooks will handle math instruction – for your student and you, if you want to learn alongside.

10 Reasons We Love Teaching Textbooks

9. You can move the grade book to a new computer. Ask me how I know this. I seriously think this past year is the first year since we began using Teaching Textbooks that we didn’t need to move someone’s math to a different computer for some reason.

The first few times it happened, we lost the completed lessons and the grades because I didn’t know how easy it is to move the grade book. (Though you’re really out of luck if your hard drive crashes. You can ask me how I know that too.)

Moving the grade book is easy-peasy using the grade book transfer button that’s available in the Teaching Textbooks folder after you install the program.

10.  Teaching Textbooks offers regular review. Each lesson contains new material along with previously-taught material (with a notation of the lesson in which it was first taught in case your student needs to refresh her memory). My kids agree that sometimes it’s really nice, in the middle of a tough math lesson, to come across something from way back at the beginning of the book that now seems easy. Just sayin’.

Do you use Teaching Textbooks? What do you love most?

Kris Bales is a newly-retired homeschool mom and the quirky, Christ-following, painfully honest founder (and former owner) of Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers. She has a pretty serious addiction to sweet tea and Words with Friends. Kris and her husband of over 30 years are parents to three amazing homeschool grads. They share their home with three dogs, two cats, a ball python, a bearded dragon, and seven birds.

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  1. Hi! How does this compare to Math-U-See? The children are pretty happy, so I am wont to change it…

    1. I’d love to help, Martha, but I’m really not in a position to give a fair comparison of the two. We used MUS for less than 30 days before returning it for a refund because the kids didn’t like it. That was probably 10 years ago and it was before we switched to TT, so I really don’t remember much about MUS except the blocks. Sorry!

    2. We have used MUS for a few years before switching over to TT. My kids were bored with MUS and since it was only explained one way, they would get frustrated. Really, I think they were just bored. At the moment I have two using the 5th grade MUS. I really like how TT is interactive, and so do the kids. They like the noises and it’s more engaging for sure. A million times more engaging. I like that TT keeps track of the grades as well. We never graded before TT, and it’s been nice for them to see where they stand so to speak. Hope that was helpful.

    1. Thanks for catching that – you know, before I had it wrong for a week! 🙂 That’s what happens when you work a week ahead during the summer when your days are all messed up to begin with. {sigh}

  2. I love TT. We used it this past year with Pre-Algebra for my 7th graders, and will continue to use it. My kids love the lessons, hints and tutorials. I love the grade book.

  3. TT is my absolute favorite math program for my daughter. She is not naturally a math person. I am. It took years of my own struggling to teach her the way she learned before I found this program. Because of her age, I always prioritized staying encouraged, because I know once a child says, “I am terrible at math,” that will replay in their minds endlessly. That means, prior to TT, we would take two steps forward, one back, in order to keep her math confidence high enough that she didn’t quit trying. The price to pay was progress. She was a grade level behind in math, but at least she didn’t tell herself she was a failure. Then, I found TT. It explains to her, endlessly if necessary (and it’s sometimes necessary), how to do the math we’ve always struggled to teach her. It keeps her interested because of the computer game aspect. And within one year on the program, she is fully caught up to grade level. Big fan. Now to start her brother on it, too…

  4. This is an awesome giveaway, and I think this would be perfect for my 11 yr old who truly hates math and gets very frustrated. Thanks for the opportunity!

  5. We love it too! I’m encouraged to read you didn’t start until pre algebra. We’ve used it up to pre-algebra and its good to know it keeps getting better! Thanks for doing a giveaway- fingers crossed!

  6. Teaching Textbooks saved my children’s love of math. Years before it was tears and frustration but TT turned that all around! I am so thankful for this curriculum and how much my children love it!! Thank you Weird, Unsocialized homeschoolers!!

  7. We love TT too! My boys are so thrilled that we finally found an enjoyable math curriculum! Thanks for doing a giveaway!

  8. Im excited to try TT for the first time this year, with my 3rd and 6th grader. It will be our first year homeschooling:)
    I THINK i entered the giveaway? I did 3/5 things but when i clicked bsck to this site im not sure if it took my entries?;)

    1. Hi, Aubrey. I didn’t see your email listed in the entries. Are you on mobile or desktop? Did you click the enter button after each entry? You may want to try again. I’m sorry for the inconvenience!

  9. Hi! Thanks for the awesome giveaway. It never asked for my email address however I entered all ways except Twitter. If you get a chance can you let me know if it worked for me?

    Thank you! Gina J

    1. If you logged in using Facebook, Rafflecopter uses the email account associated with your Facebook account. If you choose the email option to login, you just have to enter your email address the one time. Hope that helps!

  10. I love TT! We used it for the first time this year for pre-algebra and it was a Godsend! My son understood it and was INDEPENDENT all year with his math! Thank you TT! I’m never going back to anything else!

  11. Hanks so much for the opportunity! Our current math program does not offer a complete curriculum past 7th grade, so we are anxious to find something new.

  12. We love TT!! My youngest used it last year and both boys will use it this year. My oldest is hoping to do both 7th grade and pre-algebra this year. It is completely doable too!! So glad we found TT and love that they can use it for so many/all of their maths. Would LOVE to win. Glad I found your blog. I am looking forward to reading the entries. I have been thinking about starting a blog for our HS, this will give me great ideas!!

  13. We’ve used TT since 4th grade and are starting Geometry this coming school year. Clearly, we love the program to have been so loyal!

  14. Homeschool moms at my church recommended TT and they are well worth. Algebra becomes doable! My granddaughter loves it!

  15. Glad to hear all this! I actually work at Teaching Textbooks and you forgot to mention one thing! All of our tests prepare you for the ACT/SAT tests! All of our testimonials on our website prove that they have all got outstanding scores on the national tests! Glad to see you are enjoying and call our customer support if you ever need anything!

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