As part of the Review Crew for Old Schoolhouse Magazine, I’ve been given to use and review a 12 Month Family Plan membership to CTC Math, an online math tutoring program. I had Ruby, Sterling, Liberty, and Eden each work in their current grade level four days a week. They took quizzes to figure out where they were, and once we figured that out, they would do a lesson or more a day and watch a short video followed by usually twenty questions on the subject taught. We could skip around topics as much as I (or they) wanted to, it told them what they got wrong and the correct answer, and emailed me at least weekly to update me on their progress. It offered printable certificates to celebrate their achievements and allowed them access to all grade levels, so once they completed one level satisfactorily, they could move forward.
My biggest concern with doing CTC Math was wondering, if we use a different curriculum in our daily work, how were my children going to find where they are regarding what they have and haven’t learned – and what about teaching concepts differently? My fears regarding placement were eased the first day – each child started in their current grade and took quizzes on each subject. When they got less than 90% on any one subject, they were regarding (my rules) to complete that topic. Easy, painless, and rather fun for the kids – tests on subjects they already know are not so bad, in their world. Ruby started quite a way into the kindgarten level, Sterling is now nearly finished with the first grade level, and Eden and Liberty are learning much in their levels, 4th and 5th, consecutively.
As for my other concern, it was only an issue once so far – and it really wasn’t even that. Liberty was so lost in the metric system, it was pretty frustrating, and I wished it would studying our own measurement system instead. The teacher has a fun accent, and the curriculum was, it would seem, written in a country outside of the United States. I couldn’t find anything saying where, but that was the only time it was ever an issue. Ruby was thoroughly frustrated when she was filling out ordinal numbering and I’d told her to use “th” after the numbers… that worked great except she wrote “2th” and got it marked wrong. There was a moment that I realized it’s still not a human, able to accept the fact that she knew what she was talking about even when she typed it wrong. With a young child not yet studying typing and still learning spelling and reading, a few early exercises were frustrating for her, but she hasn’t had any lately. Those lessons were all early in our review period.
The kids all loved CTC Math. No one complained even once when sent to do their lesson. Many times they did more than they were required to do. None of them struggle overly with math, and we finished our math books for the year early in the review, so I’m not entirely sure it helped raise their grade – but it certainly didn’t hurt. I like that it’s keeping them in math and they aren’t losing ground even though we’re done with school for a few months. We usually have a few tears at the beginning of the school year, having forgotten what was once learned. I think CTC Math will fill in those gaps for us and help keep the things they know fresh in their minds.
All told, we’ve really appreciated CTC Math. I like that they offer affordable plans for multiple students. I like that they can skip around in subjects within their grade to cover topics they need more help on, and how quickly my kids were able to complete their daily lessons. No one spent more than 20 minutes on their one topic, but they often chose to spend more time and do more. Anytime they are choosing, willingly, to do more math in a day than is required I’m cheering them on!
All plans are currently on sale. Single student plans are on sale and are $11.97 a month, $50.80 for six months, or $78.80 for a year. Two or more students are sale priced at $15.97 for one month, $78.80 for six months, or $118.80 for a year.
To read more Crew reviews on CTC Math, check out the Review Crew Blog here.