BJU Press's math program is designed to be taught from the teacher's editions using manipulatives, activities, and interactive discussion. Teacher's editions in the Subject Kits provide complete instructions for teaching the program. In the third editions of this program, the lessons are scripted in the teacher's editions. They walk the teacher/parent through the lesson step by step with script for what the teacher is to say and do at each step. Teacher's editions include reduced reproductions of student workbook pages with answers overprinted.
The curriculum does an excellent job of presenting concepts in a variety of ways to reach different learning styles. The student worktext is used for practice and reinforcement. Since much learning occurs through activity and discussion, workbook learning is a lesser part of each lesson; you cannot just give the student the workbook without first teaching the lesson. The need for teacher presentaion particularly distinguishes these texts for the middle grade levels from most others available to home educators.
The workbooks are colorful and appealingly illustrated. They include cumulative review and quizzes and the end of each chapter. Student workbooks are glue-bound, so they are not very durable.
Courses for grades one through four each have a Reviews workbook with two pages per day of additional practice on: concepts taught in each day's lesson, concepts and skills from prior lessons, and math facts. An inexpensive Student Maniplulatives Packet adds elements for hands-on learning. Booklets of tests are sold separately as are their corresponding answer key booklets.
Third edition teacher's editions include a "Teacher's Toolkit" on CD-ROM. The CD's contain instructional pages as well as enrichment pages, reteaching pages, fact review, extended activies for students. Most of these used to be available in separate books that you could purchase for students depending upon whether they were advanced, average, or struggling. Having pages on the CD provides much greater flexibility since a student might struggle with one concept while easily grasping others; now you print only what you need. The CD's also include calculator activities, teaching charts (visual aids), reproducibles for manipulatives not in the Student Manipulatives Packet, and the answer key for the Reviews book. (Note that BJU Press also sells classroom-designed Teacher's Visual Packets for each level, but these are now available as smaller, printable pages on the Teacher's Toolkit CD for homeschool use.) In the teacher's edition, an introductory page for each chapter outlines lesson objectives for each of the lessons in the chapter, and it also has lists of all other resources needed for the lesson from the "Teacher's Toolkit" CD.
Subject Kits for each level include the teacher's edition with the CD-ROM, the student workbook, student manipulatives packet, reviews (for kits for grades one through four), tests, and tests answer key.
BJU Press's K5 math program is designed to build a foundation for understanding math concepts. . . Manipulatives (e.g., Unifix Cubes and counters) play an important role in introducing new concepts at this level. The Student Materials Packet provides manipulatives for the student, although the Teacher's Edition offers suggestions for substitutes and make-it-yourself manipulatives.
The Home Teacher Packet contains essential teaching aids and worksheets used in the lessons. The Teaching Charts Flip Chart contains teaching charts. In addition to the student worktext, an optional activity book offers enrichment activities. The Math K5 Home School Kit includes all of the essential components.
The first grade program teaches such concepts as place value, addition, subtraction, problem-solving, time, money, simple geometry, introduction of fractions, and interpreting simple graphs.
Manipulatives such as Unifix Cubes and counters play an important part in introducing new concepts, but these are not included in the Homeschool Kit. The Teacher's Edition offers suggestions for substitute and make-it-yourself manipulatives.
The second grade level still uses manipulatives as a primary teaching tool. It continues with place value, addition, and subtraction (up through three-digit numbers), while also introducing multiplication (single-digit multipliers) and division. Two-step word problems, problem solving with information from graphs, probability, money and measurement are among other topics covered.
Math 3 covers multiplication and division, covering math facts through the "10s." Students master their multiplication/division facts this year. Math 3 also does quite a bit of work with fractions and decimals. Lots of word problems help develop application skills. Manipulatives are still used, but they are included in the Homeschool Kit
Students continue to use manipulatives throughout this course as they study multiplication, division, fractions, decimals, geometry, time, measurement, graphs, (including coordinate graphs), metric measurements, and positive and negative numbers. The same manipulatives packet is used for grades four through six.
Math 5 reviews basic operations, expands work with fractions and decimals, and includes work on number concepts, (including positive and negative numbers), metric measurement, geometry (surface area and volume), ratios, proportions, percents, and working with data and graphs. The Student Manipulative Packet for grades 4 - 6 is required. An aviation theme is used throughout the text. The CD-ROM includes "Christian Worldview Shaping" instructions and activity pages; these activities relate to the chapter theme while bring a Christian worldview to bear on real life situations.
The teacher's edition is essential, and it includes the Teacher's Toolkit CD-ROM. The CD-ROM includes "Christian Worldview Shaping" as for fifth grade. This course covers fractions, decimals, percent, ratio, probability, measurement, plane geometry, and statistics. Students continue to use manipulatives from the student materials packet that comes with the kit. Introductory stories for each unit reflect the theme "Courage in Crisis."
Note: Fourth editions of the kindergarten and first grade courses are now available but I have not yet reviewed them.