As a member of the Schoolhouse Review Crew, I get to test a lot of products. I love trying out a wide variety of resources in my homeschool, many of which I am unfamiliar with before receiving to review. Professor B Math is one of those.
Professor B is an on-line math curriculum. I’ve reviewed a lot of on-line math curriculum in the last few years. I can honestly say that Professor B is completely different from any of the others I’ve seen. When I think of on-line math curricula, several things immediately come to mind.
- Math fact drill
- Games with graphics and sound
- Independent learning
Professor B is not designed for any of these.
It is not a math fact drill program, but any student who completes this curriculum will know his math facts.
It is not a game. The graphics are very simple and there is no sound. This is by design because…
Professor B is not for students to use independently.
Professor B Math is for the parent/teacher and student to go over together. Professor B does the teaching, but the parent/teacher makes sure that the student is understanding.
The program claims that students can progress through up to three years worth of math in one year.
There are 3 levels that include the following topics.
Pre-k though 2nd graders and remediation of older learners. Introduction to Addition/Subtraction Facts – Counting to One Hundred – Lower Addition and Subtraction – Higher Addition and Subtraction – Place Value Fractional Parts & Order – Time – Money
3rd grade through 5th grade and remediation of older learners. Multiplication/Division Facts and Problem Solving – Introduction to Fractions – Fractional Equivalence – Addition and Subtraction Fractions
6th through 8th grades and remediation of older learners.Multiplication/Division of Fractions – Decimals – Percents
After looking at the placement test for Level I, I decided to start both my 10 year old son and 5 year old daughter in Level I.
Level I begins with understanding the numbers 1 -10. This includes recognizing the numerals, but it goes much deeper. It includes exercises in quickly identifying how many things are on the screen. That’s pretty easy for 1, 2, or 3, but as the numbers get higher, it’s not so simple to quickly be able to tell if there are 7 or 8 balls. I remember seeing this idea in an older math text and thought that it was something lacking in the math curriculum we were using, so I was excited that Professor B included it.
In addition to quickly identifying numbers of objects, it presented numbers as combinations of fingers. For example, if you’re holding up 1 finger on your left hand and 2 fingers on your right hand, that’s called a one – two – three. Swap the sides and it’s a two – one – three. This is a very gentle way of introducing addition facts. I did have a little problem with all the finger counting though.
Do you see it? I’m not sure how they didn’t catch this as a problem, but it bothered me, partly because I’ve been trying to teach both of these children to stop using their middle fingers to point. This may or may not be a problem at all to you.
My 5 year old daughter participates enthusiastically in the lessons. She did start to get a little bored with all the number understanding sections, but I was afraid to skip them since they seem so foundational.We have not made it as far as I would have liked in the program at this point due to summer-time travel, but so far, I’ve been impressed. I’ll continue with it for her.
My 10 year old son did not participate enthusiastically at all. (We were not doing the lessons at the same time as his sister. I knew better than that!) He needs math remediation. He has not mastered all the material in Level 1, but I struggled with where to start him. I thought the beginning was important, so I tried to work through that with him. He was very upset and felt like the program was babyish. So I skipped ahead to try to find something that wasn’t so easy. (Though he truthfully had not mastered the understanding numbers part. He had a hard time getting the quick number recognition problems correct. His sister was much better at them.) Unfortunately, by the time I tried another section with him, he had already developed a strong dislike for the program. So I completely backed off Professor B with him. I hope to try it again if I can figure out where to start him. I may jump into the telling time section because he’s never mastered that skill.
A subscription to Professor B E-learning is available for $20/month. It can also be purchased for $100 for 3 years of access to a single level. The yearly price is not on the website yet, but it should be soon.