Curriculum Review

Mastering Essential Math Skills Book 1, Grades 4-5 – Math Essentials – REVIEW

I received this product through The Melanated Gold Review Squad in exchange for my honest review.

Math is a subject we are consistent with, it’s a non-negotiable in our home so, I tend to present math in different ways to make sure the kids understand the math concepts. I’m really glad I was given the opportunity to review the Mastering Essentials Math Skills, Book 1 Grades 4-5 (Bilingual Edition).

We are using Mastering Essential Math Skills, with my 5th grader, as a supplement to our main math curriculum. He is using it to practice things like speed and accuracy during morning warm-ups. Each daily lesson takes about 20 minutes to complete and there are about 120 lessons in total.

Every lesson is divided into 5 key parts: 

  • two speed drills
  • review exercises
  • teacher tips (helpful hints)
  • new material
  • a daily word problem. 

These concise, easy-to-follow lessons help students not only master their math skills but maintain and reinforce those skills through consistent review. 

The book is divided into eight chapters:

  • Whole Numbers
  • Fractions
  • Decimals
  • Percentage
  • Integers
  • Geometry
  • Charts and Graphs
  • Problem Solving

As an NYC Homeschooler, I look at the NYS standards just to make sure I cover the topics with my kids and this supplement looks to cover most math concepts for 4th and 5th grade. Click here for more information.

Do you know what’s a cool feature included with Math Essentials? Included with your workbook, you get a personal math tutor via online pre-recorded videos on their website. To access their videos, you will have to create a free account on their site. Their website has recently been updated and it is now super visually appealing and easy to navigate.

Before each new chapter, there is an overview video, less than a minute long, introducing the new chapter. On average, each video lesson afterward, is about 10 minutes long. The instructor gives step-by-step instructions with an example exercise. There are no fancy graphics, straight old-school (chalkboard) explanations, and minimum sketching. So, if you (the parent) and/or the student need help with explanations, you have access to this resource. Personally, I know, I will find this handy when we start reviewing percentages.

Bilingual Lessons: The lessons’ examples are exactly the same except that the instructions are written in Spanish. You can definitely practice your Spanish reading skills during math, however, the video instructions are only given in English so this isn’t a full-immersion math option.

Overall, this is a great addition to your math curriculum resources. It provides good, incremental lessons as review and skill sharpeners. Honestly, I think this could even work with minimalist homeschoolers. It covers most topics except for measurements if I’m not mistaken, but that can easily be covered organically through baking and/or everyday home chores.

Side Note: My son really enjoyed the speed drills. He likes anything that can be used as a competition and those can easily be used to set self-goals or one-to-one math combat against his mom.

I hope this review was helpful. Please be sure to check out what the other members of the Melanated Gold Review Squad thought about Math Essentials.

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