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A Smooth Transition from Singapore Primary Math to High School Algebra

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Dear Carrie, 

We have used Heart of Dakota from the very beginning and loved it! My son will be in Missions to Modern Marvels this year. He has now completed all of the Singapore Primary Mathematics books through 6A/6B, which he finished in Revival to Revolution. I am a bit confused by all the different math options this year. I’m guessing we will transition to Videotext or No-Nonsense Algebra?  Foerster’s Algebra seems too much for an 8th grader! Is there a math choice that is the natural progression after finishing all the Singapore math books? I maybe should add that he is good at math and is even looking forward to more algebra! I don’t want to push him too hard, but he also will be discouraged if he’s not being challenged. So, what math would be the best bridge to get him from Singapore 6B to algebra in World Geography?


“Ms. Confused about Math”

Dear “Ms. Confused about Math,”

There are a lot of terrific things about the Singapore Primary Mathematics U.S. Edition 1A through 6B! However, one difficulty is that it stops after 6B and switches to a new writer and a new format! As high school approaches, it can be tough to figure out a good transition between one math program and another. Since one size doesn’t fit all, we offer many different ways to meet your math goals depending on your student.

My son found the transition from Singapore Math 6A/6B to Principles of Mathematics to be seamless.

This past year my third son used Principles of Mathematics Book 2 after exiting Singapore 6A/6B, and it worked well! He went into Principles of Mathematics Book 2 right after Singapore 6A/6B without ever doing Principles of Mathematics Book 1. The transition was seamless even though the programs are different. We had a good year with some concepts being very easy, and others being a bit harder.

Even for a strong math student, Foerster’s Algebra I is better saved for a student’s freshman year.

Even though your son is good at math, you’re right, Foerster’s Algebra is better saved for a student’s freshman year. It would be a challenge to do Foerster’s Algebra I as an 8th grader. It is a wonderful course, but it is also very rigorous. The problem-solving that makes Foerster’s math stand out also requires a more mature student to process what is being asked. So, having a bit more maturity on one’s side before heading into Foerster would be a bonus.

Principles of Mathematics Book 2 provides a good transition from Singapore Math 6A/6B to high school Algebra 1.

If you have an 8th grader coming out of 6A/6B successfully, I’d suggest doing Principles of Mathematics Book 2 next. Then, you could begin either VideoText, Foerster’s Algebra 1, or No-Nonsense Algebra as a freshman. This would help your student firm up any needed skills, making the transition to Algebra smoother in the long run. It would also make the 8th grade year less intense math-wise. Ultimately, this path will give your student a great foundation for the rigor of the math coming in high school!




This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Jane

    Thank you! I have been searching for these answers for ages. My son began with Saxon in K and it was a flop. He is a good student and tests well in other subjects but math was a nightmare. By the middle of 3 we stopped Saxon because of tears and frustration. I found Singapore and thought I could pick up around grade 3 but his tests showed to start over. We did. Flash forward he is now a freshman. We will finish 6b this year, and while that may be considered “behind” he has mastery of the subject and no tears! Since he will be ready for algebra then, we can start sophomore year on track with math. Thank you for your guidance – I now know where to go!

    1. So glad Carrie’s post helped with your son’s upcoming transition to Algebra! Singapore Math is truly a fantastic math program, and the ‘level’ a student is doing is often not as important as the ‘work of understanding the why rather than just the how’ of solving mathematics problems. We are so glad to hear of your son’s progress, and we are thankful you’ve shared your experience here as it will surely encourage others! God bless!

  2. Karie

    Based on what you’ve said above (and your experience), would you expect going from SM 5a/5b to POM Book 1 would work alright?

  3. Yes, Karie! Carrie and I both have recommended that as an alternative option to moving into 6A/6B. Hope that helps!

    In Christ,

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