Does Anyone Use Harcourt Math?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by MelissainGA, Jun 19, 2007.

  1. MelissainGA

    MelissainGA Groupie

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    Jun 19, 2007

    I was wondering if anyone is using Harcourt Math. Our district just switched to it after having Saxon for the entire time that I have been there (4 years). I have a few questions and was wondering if you guys could help since this will be both the kids first experience with it and also MY first year in 3rd grade.

    1. If you switched from another program to Harcourt where did you notice that your students had problems (gaps)?

    2. Where did you notice gaps at testing time?

    3. Approximately how long did the lessons take you (the rep said 45 minutes to an hour but Saxon was supposed to take an hour and it took my kids about 20 minutes even doing Math Board since they were very high in Math)?

    I am sure there is something that I have forgotten to ask but this will be a start. Thanks :)
     
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  3. AHB

    AHB Rookie

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    Jun 19, 2007

    I used Harcourt for the past two years (math and science). Since it was my first year teaching anything other than language arts, I don't know how it would be to switch from one program to another. But my school also adopted a program called Target Math which pushed teachers and students to work at a grueling pace. Most of us didn't want to push foward until the kids actually got it. But a few teachers pushed them through just so it didn't look like they were behind. The scores came back at the end of the year and whether it was Harcourt, Target Math (using Harcourt), or the luck of the draw with students this year, the scores rose an amazing 20 points. (thats FCAT)
     
  4. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    Jun 19, 2007

    I use Harcourt Math. It is okay but I really want to get out the direct instruction/workbook mode. There are some things I like, some things I don't like, and I suppliment when I can. There is a whole unit that doesn't fit into the school year, so we have to cut a lot of things out of it to fit everything in. I wasn't aware of that until 3/4 into the school year, I had spent extra time at the beginning, and then I was running to catch up! Lessons are usually quick, around 30 minutes maybe. I want to make mine longer next year, and add math centers for 15 minutes after.
     
  5. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

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    Jun 19, 2007

    I also use Harcourt Math. It's okay. The only real problems I have with it are that it assumes you teach the book straight through from Ch. 1 to the end. The way our district curriculum map was, there were a lot of times I couldn't use some of the materials because they contained items we hadn't taught yet. The problem-solving workbook is the best. Also, I really liked the math manipulative kits that came with the program. There are some good hands-on activites (In the Bag) for each unit. I did have to supplement a lot though, for problem solving and hands-on stuff. The book has a lot of drill and practice.
     
  6. Ms.Jasztal

    Ms.Jasztal Maven

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    Jun 19, 2007

    It's all right. I supplement whenever possible with AIMS and Scholastic activities as well as test prep exercises from the state/online/whatever I can pull up. You may have to skip around to have continuity.
     
  7. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    Jun 19, 2007

    I bought the Marilyn Burns Month by Month Guide to Mathematics.... I am hoping to rearrange the Harcourt math to go by this book.... it has a lot more problem solving activities where kids build knowledge of math instead of the drill and practice. I'm straying away from the other teachers so I hop this works!
     
  8. ecsmom

    ecsmom Habitué

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    Jun 22, 2007

    Harcourt Math

    I used it in4th grade for the past 2 yrs. No one really likes it. It wasn't the 1st or 2nd choice of anyone. It was everyone's 3rd choice so that's what they ordered. I was one the adoption committee for reading this year. We went with the majority vote and voted again until we had a clear majority.
    Anyway, this years tests scores are in and we did great. However, I followed the state curriculum instead of the layout in the book and I taught the skills in many different ways.
     
  9. GoehringTeaches

    GoehringTeaches Comrade

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    Jun 22, 2007

    My school adopted Harcourt math for next year after having Saxon math! Are you in my school?!
     
  10. Missy

    Missy Aficionado

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    Jun 23, 2007

    We adopted Harcourt two years ago; I piloted it for my building but it wasn't my first choice.

    I rarely use the book, and follow my district sequence so parts were tough. Sometimes the hardest material would be first in a unit. I liked the Homework masters because they have a bit of explanation with the problems, but they do not have enough room to work the problems!
     
  11. yclark

    yclark Comrade

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    Jun 23, 2007

    We use Harcourt math at our school. I teach 1st but my own children have gone through (now through fifth grade). I like it less and less as it progresses. It's alright with my little ones and I can supplement but it has four or five lessons and a test, not a lot of extra practice time. Our system has a calendar and we're expected to move quicker than a chapter a week in first grade. I'm not sure of the exact pacing with the older kids but it's pretty close to one a week. It's just too fast when you're doing 4-digit anything. Fractions, decimals, conversions. Whoa! My son had a really hard time with fifth grade math. The book also uses some vocabulary that was new to me and I've been in elementary for 20 years. Another person mentioned not enough space to work problems. That was a huge problem in getting him to do his homework and his teacher would only require even numbered problems AND he has small handwriting. It was as though the publishers made worksheets and didn't try doing them.
     
  12. goopp

    goopp Devotee

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    Jun 23, 2007

    Our school district adopted Harcourt Math for next year, too. Did they get every district in the state?
     
  13. MelissainGA

    MelissainGA Groupie

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    Jun 24, 2007

    GoehringTeaches - sorry for the delay but we went fishing/camping on the Taccoa this weekend so I haven't been with the computer... I don't know.. where are you?

    Goopp - I don't know but they probably tried if they didn't.

    Thanks for the input so far everyone... I was afraid of that because we have been told that we CAN'T suppliment... so am wondering how that we are going to make sure we pass state testing. Lucky the majority of the kids I am having loop with me are high in Math so the fast pace won't really be an issue. I just want to make sure the skills are taught before the state testing...
     
  14. goopp

    goopp Devotee

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    Jun 24, 2007

    We adopted another program along with Harcourt Math. I can't remember what it's called...I just heard about it at post-planning, but we don't have the TE's yet. If I can figure out what it is, I'll let you know.
     
  15. MelissainGA

    MelissainGA Groupie

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    K thanks.. they are giving us a "challenge/problem solving" program also but it won't suppliment on the areas that are on the test but not covered by the text.
     
  16. yclark

    yclark Comrade

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    Jun 24, 2007

    Georgia Teachers?

    Melissa,
    Do you teach in Toccoa? I grew up there and graduated from Stephens County Highschool. Where are all of you Georgia teachers from? I taught in Greene County and Barrow County. My sisters-in-laws teach (or have taught) in Hall, Jackson, Barrow and Clarke. I lived in Athens and graduated from UGA. Oh yeah, my parents have retired to Habersham County.
     
  17. shasha379

    shasha379 Devotee

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    Jun 24, 2007

    We had Harcourt, but just adopted Houghton Mifflin this year.
     
  18. MelissainGA

    MelissainGA Groupie

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    Jun 24, 2007

    Yclark,

    No I don't I am about 3 hours sw of Toccoa. We just wanted a weekend away and went up there camping/fishing. I am originally from Kentucky and haven't seen a large part of the state so we stopped and saw Tallulah Gorge and then another weekend we went to Tybee Island. I have seen more of Georgia this summer than I have in the past four years.
     
  19. GoehringTeaches

    GoehringTeaches Comrade

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    Jun 25, 2007

    I'm outside Savannah by about 45 minutes. It's Long county. Harcourt must have gotten everybody in the state because they already a list that was really long!
     
  20. MelissainGA

    MelissainGA Groupie

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    Jun 25, 2007

    I absolutely loved Savannah and Tybee Island. The only problem that we had the entire trip was we wanted something like a Wal-Mart or a Kroger and we couldn't find one. Where does anyone in Savannah buy groceries and things like you get at a Wal-Mart? The only grocery we saw the entire trip was an IGA out on Tybee.
     
  21. GoehringTeaches

    GoehringTeaches Comrade

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    Jun 25, 2007

    You were in the tourist area but a little bit further north and a little further south in Savannah are Wal-marts and Krogers (Abercorn particularly has the malls and what not!)
     
  22. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    Jun 26, 2007

    We used Harcourt Math for the first time last year. It actually went along better with our district Mastery Math program. I found that the progression was put together better than our previous Math program. The bonus: Harcourt Math Computer program. I loved having that extra program to help supplement the book. We used it in our station time, and in our computer lab.
     

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