Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Mastering Math Skills for First Grade: A Review of a Reading Eggs Workbook

Math is often an area that causes struggles for some children. Finding a good series of workbooks to assist children in mastering essential skills that also aligns with an online resource is fantastic! Last year we reviewed 200 Essential Math Skills for Kindergarten workbook from Reading Eggs that correlates to Mathseeds. This year our six-year-old son is reviewing 200 Essential Skills for First Grade and loving it! There are a series of 9 books from Reading Eggs that just might be perfect for your homeschool.

What are the Workbooks?

These workbooks are good whether or not you subscribe to the online learning programs of Reading Eggs and Mathseeds. We have been able to use them both with and without an online subscription. Right now, we are using the workbook in conjunction with Mathseeds. So, our son is able to fill in the information at the end of the lesson as he completes the activities online.

  • 240 Essential Reading Skills for Kindergarten 
  • 240 Essential Reading Skills for First Grade 
  • 200 Essential Reading Skills for Second Grade 
  • 200 Essential Reading Skills for Third Grade 
  • 200 Essential Reading Skills for Fourth Grade
  • 200 Essential Reading Skills for Fifth Grade 
  • 200 Essential Math Skills for Kindergarten (We reviewed this last year.) 
  • 200 Essential Math Skills for First Grade (We are reviewing this workbook this year.) 
  • 200 Essential Math Skills for Second Grade 
The workbooks provide instruction in age-appropriate skills that will help your child succeed in reading or math depending upon which workbook your child uses. For example, in the 200 Essential Math Skills for Kindergarten our son (and now daughter*) reviewed and practiced recognizing numbers, shapes, geometry, addition, subtraction, and more. 

*Our son started the Kindergarten workbook half way with lesson 26 after working on Mathseeds online during our review last year. So, our daughter is completing the first half of it this year. 

The reading workbooks provide practice and review of grammar, literary skills, reading comprehension, spelling, and more. Just like the math workbooks, these workbooks have full-color pages and a yearly plan. 

What are the Key Features of the 200 Essential Math Skills for First Grade? 

The full-color, 260-page paperback workbook contains 50 lessons, 10 quizzes, 10 fun spots, 11 certificates, pages for the cut-out portions of several lessons, a year planner, and additional learning activities. The First Grade workbook picks up with Map 11 of Mathseeds and goes over many different mathematics skills. Some of these skills include:

  • Addition and subtraction
  • Telling time
  • Measurement: near, far, area, etc. 
  • Money 
  • Graphing 
  • Chance 
  • 2-D and 3-D Shapes 
The lessons include a variety of activities like drawing, labeling, matching, completing sentences, using number lines, cut and pasting pictures, and identifying correct geometric shapes, money, and fractions.

The maps line up with the online lessons and provide you with a plan for approaching the workbook. 

How Did We Use the Workbook in Our Homeschool? 

Our six-year-old son will complete part of or an entire lesson each day. He then spends some time on Mathseeds to see what pet is hatching out of the acorn (which we record in the workbook). He also goes through and completes some of the driving tests which are recommended in the workbook. These help him practice the skills reviewing in the lesson.

I am also having our daughter complete the early lessons from the Kindergarten book that were too easy for our son least year. This works out rather nicely as they are both working in their workbooks at the same time and—because the lessons are similar in their set up—it is very easy for me to oversee and assist them as needed. I would recommend using the workbooks across the ages if you have children of multiple ages or skill levels.

The kindergarten workbook featured addition which our son completed last year.

The first grade workbook incorporated additional ways to show addition and subtraction.

The online learning resource of Mathseeds is a wonderful program to use either alone or—even better—with the workbook! It is fantastic to go to the computer and have our son complete the appropriate lesson online after he has completed the assignments in the workbook. There are multiple activities for each online lesson including different games to help review the concept.

Once a student completes a lesson, it is unlocked and available to replay.

One of the Mathseeds activities asks the student to cut the apple pieces in half.

Mathseeds also has portions that are more game-like such as the 'play' section. Our son likes measuring out liquids and creating shapes (plus decorating his treehouse using acorns to purchase new items).

In addition to using the online math component of Mathseeds (ages 3-9), our son has also discovered he really likes Reading Eggspress (ages 7-13). He enjoys reading the books and collecting trading cards and is excelling at working on reading comprehension and learning about themes, plots, and grammar.

Our son just can't stop working on Reading Eggspress. 

Additional Opportunities for Learning 

We incorporated one of the learning activities suggested in the beginning of the book so far: money. I gathered up our play money and the kids reviewed the values and names. They then set up a shop and pretend to sell items back and forth. Learning about money is a very important real world skill and I am glad that 200 Essential Skills for First Grade covers it. 

There are a variety of learning activities listed in the front of the book.

As we are working on money skills, we used a set that was gifted to our son to play shop.
Our son is looking forward to the different lessons on money.

Our Thoughts 

I really like how the workbooks are organized. They are printed on thick paper which means minimal tearing. The text is large enough to read and the spaces are just the right size for the answers. I find the directions to be clear and uncluttered. So far, none of the assignments seems too difficult. Our son can complete most of the work on his own.

Our six-year-old son likes doing the coloring and matching sections. He says the workbook "really helps children with their shapes" and "it also teaches you about colors, time, and where things are. The computer and the workbook teaches you about doubles." He also enjoys doing the fun spot pages and likes when I fill out the certificates.

I asked our son what part in the workbook he is looking forward to working on in the future. He showed me Lesson 76 where students will work with the equals sign. The lesson will ask him to write out addition problems and complete them as well as figure out if sums are equal or not. This particular lesson incorporates dice, dominoes, and even money to figure out if sums are equal.

I recommend the workbooks from Reading Eggs. They are bright and colorful and full of interesting lessons for children. It will be very easy for our son to continue using 200 Essential Math Skills for First Grade during the rest of the homeschool year.

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A multi-award winning online learning program for children ages 2–13, Reading Eggs supports the essential foundations of reading with its highly engaging lessons, games, and e-books!

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If you want to see how other homeschooling families use either the math workbooks or the reading ones, be sure to check out the reviews

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