Wednesday, October 11, 2017


If you are looking for a new homeschool math solution then I might have the answer for you.  I was so excited to get to officially review the Family Membership for CTCMath.  You can add up to 5 students with a family membership.  Those of you who know me know that I talk about this curriculum a lot.  It was a life saver for my son many years ago.  It has continued to be the go-to math curriculum in our family. It is an online curriculum with an annual membership.  At some levels, math worksheets can also be printed and then entered into the system when completed.  My middle school students sometimes prefer to print the lesson out and work it out that way.  Printed worksheets are not an option for my kindergartner.

8th grader working on his math

Middle School video lesson sample

We began our math journey using another math curriculum that worked great until we hit the 4th grade.  My struggling learner son was getting bored and frustrated with the endless problems he had to complete.  His frustration was severely hindering his ability to learn the material.  We tried many options and finally found our solution with CTCMath.  It covers grades K-12 including Calculus.  It is a full curriculum from grades K-8.  After the 8th grade they do recommend using it as a supplemental program but I noticed recently that they have added a LOT of new material so that may change in the near future.

K4 daughter working on math

Kindergarten sample video lessons

The lessons are short, to the point and focused.  The lessons consist of a short (3 to 10 minutes depending on grade level) video lesson and then a short set of questions.  There are generally only about 10 questions to answer for each lesson (but it varies as my K4 just completed a lesson with 20 questions).  This may seem like your student wouldn't get enough training but on the contrary.  The short math lessons keep your child's attention and help them to master subjects quickly.  There are ways to customize the lessons and one of the options I chose is to require the kids to pass with at least a score of 90% or better.  This helps me to feel confident they are mastering the material. They are allowed to retake the lesson as many times as necessary to pass.  This is also all recorded for you to see in the reports on each student.  The reports show you when and how many times it took a student to complete a lesson.

Detailed Middle School Report

Summary Middle School Report

By setting a minimum pass score it causes the kids to have to repeat the lesson until they can pass with a score of 90% or better.  The kids really like the shorter lessons and generally do not get frustrated with the lessons.  Once in a while, they hit a tough lesson that causes them to take a lot longer.

Student Dashboard
The lessons are broken into topics and within each topic grouping, you have the option to take a diagnostic test (used to determine what skills your child may need to work on) and a topic test taken at the end for testing purposes. We personally do not use the diagnostic tests regularly but I have heard that others use it to also test their knowledge at the end of the sections in addition to or instead of the topic tests.

There are so many wonderful benefits to this curriculum that  I like including
  • instant results for the kids
  • self grading
  • ability to track everything the kids do
  • reports emailed to me
  • ability to assign "tasks" to keep kids on track
Assigned tasks

One of the main things that made this a success for my son was the instant feedback on whether his answer is right or wrong.  It was a problem he struggled with from the beginning.  It would take us hours to get through math because I had to sit with him and let him know after EACH question if he was right or wrong.  I detested this, but it was how he was wired.  He just melted down if he didn't know how he had done. CTCMath saved me from this agony. On the regular daily lessons, he sees after each question if he gets it right or wrong and it gives him the right answer if it is wrong. SCORE!

Another time saver is that everything is automatically graded for you and recorded.  If I am not sure he is staying on task or completing lessons I can just log in to see what he did for the day, when he logged on, when he logged off, how long he took on the lesson, how many attempts he made and if he passed it or not and what his score was.  It is wonderful!!  I have found that I do have to "assign tasks" with him because otherwise he jumps around and looks for easier lessons to complete and gets all messed up on his lessons.  That is one negative of this program is that it allows the student free access to any and all lessons (Yet a big positive for us since you can adjust grade levels per your student's needs).  He can jump grades and lessons at will.  It does not force him to finish anything in order.  When I go in and assign him lessons using the task feature I am able to track if he is keeping things in order and completing the lessons he needs to complete in the order I want them completed.  He can bypass this but it also shows that the task was not completed (I get emails on this also) and he, of course, has consequences from me (lost privileges and game time) when this happens.

The teacher, Pat Murray, is Australian so there is an accent and sometimes the foreign aspect comes through but it is not a problem for us.  He is a wonderful teacher and makes the lessons engaging.  My 7th grader noticed that "color" was misspelled the other day but I told her that the spelling of "colour" is also acceptable.  I currently have my K4, 7th grade, and 8th grade students using this and they all enjoy it (as much as a child can of math). 

I have my own PARENT LOGIN and each of the kids have their own individual logins with their own passwords.  Once I log in I see my parent dashboard which gives me a screenshot of all the kid's progress and overall grades. I can assign tasks if necessary or use the tools to browse lessons, export data, or print checklists that I can use to manually log their lessons completed.  I just recently realized that this is a good idea because with the menus being so complex it is time-consuming and difficult sometimes to keep up with what they are completing. If I manually write it down on the checklist sheet I can see at a glance what lessons they may have skipped or not completed.

Parent Dashboard

Another fun feature that is easily missed is the math games at the bottom of each screen
  • Speed Skills
  • Times Tables
  • Swap pieces (I have yet to master this!)

Speed Skills (covers addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and order of operations) and Times Tables provide some excellent practice with a lot of fun for the kids.

We have been very happy with this math curriculum and I wholeheartedly recommend CTCMath.  The Family Membership has been a perfect fit for us.  They have wonderful discounts for homeschool families. Currently, you can take advantage of their FREE TRIAL which allows you limited access to try the program out.  If you decide it is a good fit for you then you can take advantage of their DISCOUNT OFFER which includes 60% off retail price plus an ADDITIONAL 6 MONTHS FREE!  You just cannot beat that offer. 



Please see what others are saying about this wonderful program through the link below

CTCMath Online Math Tutoring {Reviews}
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