Rod and Staff Arithmetic

by Carle
(Oklahoma City)

Rod and Staff Arithmetic
Grades 1-4
used 2007- current

Likes: I have so many likes with this program. I like that in the early ages it focuses on the basics. I like that you can start from the beginning with a child who has had no earlier math program. I like that it is scripted enough that it really is open and go most days. I love the daily oral review and memorization. It fits well into a Classical program with the daily memorization exercises.

I like that the 4th grade math book finally picks up and begins to compare to what other programs are doing, after the 1-3rd grades seem a little "behind" because they focus so much on the basics. I love the mental math in grades 4 and up. I like the fact that it is no nonsense, no color, etc.

My children and I both like the themes of the first 3 books. The way they incorporate the felt board duckies in 1st grade is so sweet and the bee facts and ocean facts in in grades 2 and 3 were nice too. I like the instruction for hands on manipulatives they give like the felt board and making a boat poster and bee and clover poster. There is leeway to add your own hands on activities as well like using real coins and counters and hopping like a frog from lily pad to lily pad when counting by 5's for a child that needs it.

This program has worked well with both of my very different learners.

Dislikes: It is a little worrisome in the early years when you know that other programs cover so many other mathematical concepts like graphing and perimeters and such that are not covered until 4th grade in R&S. Since we never planned on sending our kids to P.S. I have been comfortable knowing that eventually they will get these other concepts and in the meantime they really get the basics in grades 1-3. Grade 4 really picks up, and my worries have been elimanated.

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