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# Switching from Rightstart to MUS?

Tagged: Math U See, RightStart math

- This topic has 9 replies, 5 voices, and was last updated 11 years, 8 months ago by
Wings2fly.

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Sahmamma MemberHi! I am considering switching two of my kids from rightstart to MUS but don’t know where to place them. I am aware that MUS has a type of “placement” test, but the Alpha says that they introduce subtraction. I have one child in Rightstart level A, he is just about done with this. I am confident that he could do the simple addition, but since rightstart doesn’t really do subtraction the way MUS has it written, I am unsure.

My daugther is in Rightstart level B and struggles still with multiple digit addition. I am more certain of placing her in MUS Beta.

I am wondering, if I finish Rightstart A with my son, can I maybe place both of them in MUS beta together?

Thoughts would be great, especially from people that are familiar with both Rightstart and MUS.

Wings2fly ParticipantWe actually switched from MUS to RS because my ds understood the AL abacus better than the MUS blocks. They are definitely different methods and I would have your younger level A in Alpha. But I would hold on to the R S math games to help them learn their math facts. We really had problems in MUS geting ds to learn his facts. We started supplementing MUS with RS games before switching over curriculum and I was impressed that he started then to learn his facts. Something I reay did like about MUS is teaching place value with decimal street. I combined that with R S place value cards and they work really well together. I kept the MUS blocks and I sometimes use them for a RS lesson especially on place value. Plus I think we may return to MUS one day at the higher level that is not offered by RS. Why are you wanting to change?

Tristan ParticipantWe switched my oldest from Saxon to MUS in 3rd. We started her in Alpha. She’s in 6th now and it has made a world of difference for her. We school year round so she’s nearly caught up to where she would have been beginning MUS in 1st. I say go with Alpha. Better to get grounded in MUS’s method than to skip ahead.

Oh, and my 1st grader and 2nd grader are in the same level on the same lesson. They have just always done math together and will keep doing so until one needds to slow down for mastery.

Sahmamma MemberI was considering switching for a number of reasons, cost being one of them. Another reason was the fact that Rightstart only goes up to a certain level, then they have to switch anyway so I was thinking maybe sooner is better than later? I like Rightstart, and the kids seem to be doing well, unless they are given problems that are written vertically instead of horizontally, I noticed that MUS writes them both vertically and horizontally. My dd seems to understand the vertically written better. Also MUS seems to introduce (written anyway) subtraction earlier than Rightstart. Maybe that’s not a good thing? I was also thinking MUS might be less “busy work”. Rightstart seems to have a lot of it. I may not have expressed that well, but I like things that get to the point/concept.

My oldest was doing Teaching Textbooks 4, but that is not working for him, and since Rightstart only goes up to a certain level, and there are transitions lessons I figured I would just put him in MUS, then I thought…..well, why not the others too?

I’m thinking too much I’m sure. I am concerned with cost once they are done with their. MUS can be found used at a much cheaper price than RS.

missceegee ParticipantI switched dd11 (6th) and ds8 (3rd) to MUS this year. Both began in alpha doing only tests until there was a new idea or way of thinking. Dd11 is 1/2 way through Delta and will finish this year somewhere in Epsilon. Ds8 just finished Beta and is starting gamma which he should finish at the end of this year or beginning of next. It has been extremely beneficial for both to start and the beginning and move through. I can see us sticking with muS for the long haul.

Eta – we did not come from RS, but a variety of other tried options.

suzukimom ParticipantHey Sahmamma, are you on the RightStart Yahoo Group?

I am assuming that your daughter that is in Level B is at about lesson 68? On the Yahoo group, you discover that this is a normal “brick wall” spot that most kids seem to struggle a bit. generally it is advised to “camp out” there playing the games, and then things get easier. Very recently (after my oldest 2 finished level B) – a mom gave some suggestions of some intermediate steps to help with lesson 68 that seemed to help her kids past that “wall”.

Also, the vertical addition (to 4 digits) does get learned in level B – I’m not sure where off hand. There is a lot more practice with it in level C as well.

I’m not sure where your oldest would place in RS. It is true that RS only goes up to a certain level…..

Wings2fly ParticipantAs far as the cost factor, I purchased my lesson books used. I know I’ll get most of my money back when it is time to sell them. The best deals I got were from the RS yahoo group that suzukimom mentioned. I bought the teacher’s lesson books level D and E for $25 each shipped for used. I have also purchased from ebay and homeschoolclassifieds. For the worksheets, I purchased the computer disk that contains levels A to E and Worksheets for the AL Abacus, so I can print all I need for all of my children. I have a laser printer, so it is low cost. Once the manipulatives are purchased, they are re-usable for all children and then can be sold when finished.

I would hesitate to switch them if they are not struggling with the program. I like that RS uses many different manipulatives and ways of explaining concepts, but with MUS they use only the MUS blocks. In RS they are learning subtraction also with the part-whole circles. There are a few lessons on subtraction near the end of level B, but they basically already know addition and subtraction if they know the number bonds that make up the part-whole circles. Then they just look for the part instead of the whole for subtraction. Example: 8 and 2 are the parts in the small circles that come together for 10 in the large circle. So if they know this, they also know that 10(the whole) – 8(the part) = 2(the other part). Wish I could draw the circles to illustrate. It could be that if your youngest is familiar with the part-whole circles that he would easily understand subtraction now, too. However, MUS is very reliant on the MUS blocks and the colors to represent numbers. They would spend a great deal of time learning the blocks at first, just as students in RS spend a great deal of time learning the AL abacus at first and seeing that five blue beads and two yellow beads is 7, without having to count.

RS starts adding verticle in the last half of level B. In fact, they are doing 4 digit vertical addition at the end of level B and get more practice with it in level C, when multiplication is introduced. They learn their multiplication facts with skip counting on the abacus and math card games. My ds has been very successful with the RS program, who had struggled with MUS and Saxon. So if you do switch, please consider at least still keeping an AL abacus and math games around to supplement if needed. RS recommends VideoText for pre-algebra after level G, geometry. But SCM recommends MUS after RS, and I have not decided yet which we’ll use.

Sahmamma MemberMy daughter right now is on level B lesson 78. Yes, around lesson 68 or so it was really rough, but it is getting easier now. I guess I will see the vertical addition soon. My son is about done with level A (10 lessons left), and he is only 5. I am a bit concerned that although he seems more advanced than his sister he will struggle with level B. I guess I will just go slower with level B.

I do need to purchase that game book/kit…..Although I am the worst game player ever. I have to ask my husband to help me understand the game instructions because I just don’t get it, lol.

I think I will keep using RS with my two younger ones, and put my oldest in MUS. He is a different situation and add the Rightstart games which will be great for him to master his multiplication which he struggles with.

Wings2fly ParticipantYou don’t already have the RS math games!? They are not hard to understand and some are on video at youtube or the dvd with the kit. This is foundational to the RS program. The author says that games are for learning math what books are to learning reading. You could try playing some of the level b math games with a regular deck of numbered cards. The instrucions should be in your lesson book. We try to play a math game daily but it is usually 3 days that we actually fit it in. Thay are very important. It doesn’t have to be only RSgames. Any math game would help.

Wings2fly ParticipantLink to videos for RS math card games. My ds especially likes Go to the Dump and Multiplication Memory.

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