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Teaching Textbooks: The Best Homeschool Math Curriculum for Kids Who Hate Math

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Finding a homeschool math curriculum for kids who hate math can be a tricky thing. We are starting our eighth year of homeschooling and it has taken me until LAST year to find something that my oldest son will do consistently without complaining or shedding tears. Yes, in our home, math has been a major struggle, so imagine my excitement when we finally found the one that ended the math time meltdowns.

Child looking at laptop computer

Disclosure: I was compensated for my time reviewing this product and writing this review. I did receive this product for free. However, we had already purchased it on our own and were using it when presented with this opportunity. All opinions are honest and I was not required to post a positive review.

When we first started homeschooling, I purchased a very popular and well-loved math curriculum. My son was fine for a while, but then he hit a wall in the second year using it. It wasn't working. I pushed him to keep going for a while, but then he just completely shut down. Out of frustration, I put our math curriculum on the shelf for a while and didn't touch it to give him time to recover from the trauma of math time meltdowns. I'm not sure if that was the best decision or not, but it's the decision I made at the time. I started researching dyscalculia and other possible learning problems because math was so hard for my son.

But then, life happened and what started out as a short break from math, turned into an even bigger break from math. Eight months if you really want to know the truth. {Hangs head in shame}

I finally pulled myself together and forced my son to do a new homeschool math curriculum. This particular curriculum worked for a couple of  years and I thought we had found our groove, but then my son hit another wall as the methods changed from teacher-led (scripted lessons) to more independent study without any support other than reading the book for himself and me struggling to explain it in a way that made sense when I went back and checked his work. Once again, math started to be the worst part of the day.

I found myself looking around at math curriculum for homeschool in the middle of the year...again.

Since my son was older now, I finally listened to a friend's suggestion and turned to Teaching Textbooks 3.0 and signed up for the free trial after having my son take the placement test. After the first few lessons, my son was hooked and I'm crossing my fingers that we can stop playing math curriculum roulette every other year. So far, so good!

What is Teaching Textbooks 3.0?

Teaching Textbooks is a homeschool math curriculum that includes lectures (voice and "animated" math explanations), practice questions, assignments, and quizzes. It is designed to encourage independent learning by having students work through the lessons on the computer individually. The older, classic version comes in the form of computer disks and textbooks. However, Teaching Textbooks 3.0 is the online version of the program, which includes everything that can be found in the physical version (the textbook is included as an ebook) along with some bonus things like parental controls and permanent grade storage. It's pretty fantastic! (Please note: the older TT 2.0 version and TT 3.0 version are the same content, but with 3.0 everything is online.)

over the shoulder view of a child looking at a laptop computer screen


Why Does My Child Like Teaching Textbooks 3.0 Online Math Curriculum?

I had my son help me with this part because, really, it's his math. Sure, I have my own list, but I was curious to see what he would say, so I had him share his thoughts on Teaching Textbooks 3.0 with me. (His comments are in bold.)

It uses technology.--My son is like most every other kid his age that wants to use technology. As he has gotten older, I've had to be more intentional about teaching him how to use computers and allowing time on them. Teaching Textbooks 3.0 is giving him lots of great practice.

boy with glasses looking at a computer screen

The lectures are interactive and helpful.--When our previous math curriculum transitioned to more independent learning, my son just couldn't grasp the concepts without someone explaining it. Teaching Textbooks 3.0 lectures are super helpful because they are interactive and stop occasionally to ask the student to answer a question. They have to pay attention or else they'll get it wrong. The lectures are "animated" in a way because the numbers move, arrows point to important parts, etc. They aren't video lectures of a person's face, but do have a human voice explaining everything. This is the perfect combination of independent learning and support for my son.

It doesn't take too long.--My son used to work on math for well over an hour with the other curriculum. It was beyond ridiculous and only caused frustration and math fatigue. Teaching Textbooks 3.0 is taking him much less time! It usually takes about 30 minutes for him to watch the lecture and do his assignment, which is SO much better.

screenshot of Teaching Textbooks homeschool math problem

It makes math fun in a kid-friendly way.--Teaching Textbooks 3.0 can sometimes feel like it's a game. The graphics are colorful and fun. There are so many features that make it kid-friendly. For example, students can customize their experience by changing the backgrounds and "Buddies" (little characters who do funny things to reward the student for a right answer). It's a motivating reward system! 

Great, Immediate Positive Feedback & Correction--When students answer a question correctly, there is positive praise given ("Good job!") or a "Buddy" might do something funny. This immediate feedback is great for kids. After every question, kids also have the option of seeing the problem walked through and how to get the solution. They can do this for every single problem if they want. The rule at our house is if you get it wrong, you have to watch them explain how to get the solution.

screenshot of Teaching Textbooks homeschool math lesson score

Why Do Moms Like Teaching Textbooks 3.0 Online Math Curriculum?

I love all of the reasons my son gave for liking Teaching Textbooks 3.0, but there are so many other things that homeschool parents will like, too!

Less Teacher-Intensive--Teaching Textbooks 3.0 requires so much less of me which frees me up to help my younger son with other subjects that I have to teach like learning how to read. (Can I get an Amen?) This is perfect for moms with a lot of children to teach or moms with babies/toddlers that can make it difficult to get school done.

overhead view of child doing math calculations on a piece of paper sitting next to a laptop

Self-grading Assignments--This one is life-changing in so many ways. Teaching Textbooks 3.0 calculates the assignment grades and then automatically enters it into the gradebook that they keep in your parent dashboard...forever. You can go into the gradebook and delete certain things if you need to, but I don't normally unless my son completely bombs something and I want him to do it over.

Screenshot of Teaching Textbooks online gradebook

Detailed Grade Reporting--Within the gradebook, I can inspect each lesson a little closer and see which problems my child missed to help me look for patterns/pinpoint skills that need to be worked on. I can also see how many times he tried a problem or viewed the solution explanation. 

screenshot of Teaching Textbook\'s homeschool math digital gradebook

Permanent Gradebook--Families with a subscription are able to access and print student grades, even after their subscription has ended. This will be helpful for when you have to fill out transcripts or if you have to go back and look for an old grade.

Math Lessons and Quizzes are printable--While I love the technology part of Teaching Textbooks 3.0, sometimes you just need to practice math problems on a piece of paper, so I think it's great that I can print out the lessons and quizzes. This is great practice for those that will be doing some sort of standardized testing.

You can pause a subscription for vacation or breaks--Although subscriptions last for 12 months, there is a 90-day pause feature that doesn’t negatively impact the length of the subscription. For example, if I take a 3 week break at Christmas time, I could use the pause feature and it doesn't take that time away from my kids, it simply pauses and we can come back and use up the remaining time when we're ready.

screenshot of Teaching Textbooks 3.0 Online Math Curriculum pause subscription feature

Access from any device--Basically, you do not have to use the same device every time you log on. There are instructions for how to use a tablet or phone for Teaching Textbooks 3.0 instead of a computer.

Yes! TT 3.0 Works on Mobile (The user experience is a little worse in our opinion because of the generally smaller screen size, but now you can at least use TT on the go!)

Inexpensive--Teaching Textbooks 3.0 is surprisingly affordable. You do have to pay for a separate subscription for each child, but there is a large family discount plan available. I know several families that use this and they love it.

screenshot of Teaching Textbooks Large family discount plan

One Thing I'd Change About Teaching Textbooks 3.0

The only thing I wish Teaching Textbooks 3.0 would update is a way to have it calculate a final grade for my record-keeping. I had to add up all the grades on my own at the end of the semester, which is not a big deal, but it would be so awesome if you could hit a button and see their current grade without having to use the calculator. When I calculated grades, I printed off the gradebook and manually entered them into the calculator. This was slightly tedious and a real pain. 

Other than that? Nothing! It really is THAT good.

Try Teaching Textbooks 3.0 for FREE!

Want to try Teaching Textbooks 3.0 for yourself? Teaching Textbooks offers a free trial (no credit card required and no strings attached).

  • Begin with their placement test to determine which level your child needs.
  • Choose the level(s) you’re interested in.
  • Enjoy access to 15 lessons per level, including the ebooks, grade books and more.

If you choose to continue with the program, just use the same login information and your child’s progress will be transferred to your paid subscription. Easy peasy!

Click on the graphic below to get started!Teaching Textbooks 3.0 Free Trial advertisement image

Do you have questions about our experience with TT 3.0? Feel free to comment below. Questions about the program itself? Visit Teaching Textbooks for more information.

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