Jacobs' math courses – Elementary Algebra and Geometry: Seeing, Doing, Understanding – are known for their clear explanations and strong, college-prep math. However, they've lacked the depth of teacher support (complete solutions manuals and teaching videos) available for other courses, making them less user-friendly for homeschoolers. The Ask Dr. Callahan series ends that! Each set of DVDs provides approximately 12 hours of lesson lectures that parallel the respective texts. Concepts are illustrated and problems (similar to those in the text) are worked on a white or black board behind the lecturer. There is an occasional use of illustrative videos which provides a break from the teaching environment. Solutions for assignment problems are not worked on the DVDs. The general feel of these DVDs is unscripted and casual rather than slickly professional. Dr. Dale Callahan is the instructor for the Geometry DVDs. The Algebra course is taught by Cassidy Callahan, who is also the author behind the Elementary Algebra Solutions Manual – a new publication from Jacobs - which shows solutions for all problems. In addition to the support offered to confused students by the DVDs themselves, there is more. Both courses are supported online via email answers (askdrcallahan.com) and the website also has a support page that answers common questions and is constantly expanding. One interesting aspect of the Geometry DVDs is the parallel that is drawn with logic arguments which occasionally include examples of biblical apologetics. Some basic equipment is required to complete the geometry constructions in that course. We'll be adding a set soon that includes this equipment: a compass, 6" ruler, 180 degree protractor, 45 degree triangle, 60 degree triangle, automatic pencil, eraser and spare leads.
Both DVD sets come with a printed Teacher's Guide that includes a course syllabus, tests (more about these in a minute), a test grading guide and grade sheets. The Geometry tests are selected problems from the text with answers in the Jacobs Teacher's Manual. The Algebra tests come with a complete solution guide for the test problems. ~ Janice
Jacobs' math courses Elementary Algebra and Geometry: Seeing, Doing, Understanding are known for their clear explanations and strong, college-prep math. However, they've lacked the depth of teacher support (complete solutions manuals and teaching videos) available for other courses, making them less user-friendly for homeschoolers. The Ask Dr. Callahan series ends that! Each set of DVDs provides approximately 12 hours of lesson lectures that parallel the respective texts. Concepts are illustrated and problems (similar to those in the text) are worked on a white or black board behind the lecturer. There is an occasional use of illustrative videos which provides a break from the teaching environment. Solutions for assignment problems are not worked on the DVDs. The general feel of these DVDs is unscripted and casual rather than slickly professional. Dr. Dale Callahan is the instructor for the Geometry DVDs. The Algebra course is taught by Cassidy Callahan. In addition to the support offered to confused students by the DVDs themselves, there is more. Both courses are supported online via email answers (askdrcallahan.com) and the website also has a support page that answers common questions and is constantly expanding. One interesting aspect of the Geometry DVDs is the parallel that is drawn with logic arguments which occasionally include examples of biblical apologetics. Some basic equipment is required to complete the geometry constructions in that course. We'll be adding a set soon that includes this equipment: a compass, 6" ruler, 180 degree protractor, 45 degree triangle, 60 degree triangle, automatic pencil, eraser and spare leads.
Both DVD sets include a Teacher's Guide that includes a course syllabus, a test grading guide and grade sheets (either in printed, bound form or as pdf files that can be printed at home). The Geometry material provides an alternate testing option utilizing problems from the text, making the test book optional.~ Janice
Item #: 047186 ISBN: 9780984583249
Retail: $64.95 Rainbow Price: $60.00
Another uncluttered, fresh-looking math course from author Christy Walters. Again, I love that the book is addressed to the student, has plenty of workspace for problem-solving, and uses a no-nonsense approach. There is nothing "cute" here; just a direct, front-on approach to learning math. If you are not familiar with the Algebra courses, PLEASE READ description of Algebra: A Fresh Approach, as all of the same applies here. If you have used the Algebra I course above, you will equally enjoy Geometry.
In the Geometry book, I like that she begins with a mini logic course (much like Jacobs). Instead of waiting until introducing geometric theorems to have the student begin doing proofs, she immediately introduces them in the context of what the student already knows (using algebraic principles). In this way, proofs are not a "new" thing used to prove just geometry theorems, but are familiar to the student as an extension and organization of logical thought. Although non-Euclidean geometry is an interesting topic in the Jacobs book, your math-reluctant student will appreciate not having to deal with such abstract concepts here. For a more complete idea of the scope and sequence of this course (and other geometry courses, for comparison), please visit our website to view the table of contents.
The thirteen chapters are broken into parts (lessons) with direct instruction followed by problems. Again, I like the self-discovery incorporated into the exercises as well as the short-answer questions, which require the student to put principles into words. The last part of each chapter is a mixed review including material from previous sections and chapters of the book. While the book is thick (730 pages before the answers to odd-problems section), the larger typeset font is easy on the eye and the less bulky text per page helps the instruction seem less intimidating and overwhelming. Since this book is intended for use between Algebra I and Algebra II, there is an Appendix devoted to a review of algebraic concepts. This is a great mini-refresher course and I am glad to see it all in one place at the end of the book rather than parceled out in the middle of the geometry course. I found the latter approach to be unnecessarily distracting in the Jacobs book.
Another notable feature of this series is the ability to work directly in the book or to photocopy the student problem pages rather than recopying the problems and working on a separate sheet of paper. In the geometry course, this goes a step further in the inclusion of blank coordinate graphs on problems that require them.
I really like this math series and would recommend it to any student, but particularly for children who seem confused by other math courses and for children who are working grade-levels ahead. It is a good text for the easily-distracted and math-phobic student as well – who needs to see things organized clearly and appreciates the less-cluttered feel of the text. If your child has had difficulty using other math programs, don't throw in the towel until you've tried "A Fresh Approach".