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# Miquon Math users

I am trying to decide what things I really need for 1st grade Miquon math- the Orange Book, cuisenairre rods, do I need the first grade diary or lab annotations? Do I need both?
The Lab Annotations are vital!! They offer suggestions on how to complete the math sheets.

The First Grade Diary shows how the materials were used in a first grade classroom -- interesting reading, great ideas, but not as vital as the Lab Annotations.
Definitely get the lab sheets and probably the first two books (each book covers about half a year)The lab sheets have a wealth of information that helps your teach concepts instead of just steps. For example instead of teaching 5+4=9 nd 9-4=5 she explains why it is good and helpful to teach 5+4=9 because
9-4=5. There is lots of explanatioin s to how to get the most out of the quiesinair rods and activities to help your child grasp concepts before you ever touch the workbook sections. And while the first grade workbooks may not be that difficult to interpret the more advanced books are and you will need the lab sheets then. It is all in one book so you might as well get it now. It will only help.

I didn't get the first grade diary. I figured I wasn't teaching a class.
We have been using Miquon for the end of "K" and will continue to use it for "1st grade." I would suggest getting the orange and red workbook. It didn't take us very long to go through much of the orange and you can use them simultaneously if your child gets more advanced in one area (such as fractions) than another (such as multiplication). The Lab Annotations will help direct you to which section has what type of math. Also, because the pages are coded by subject with letters you can use that to guide you too. I don't use the lab annotations unless "I" need help figuring something out or need guidance as to more activities we could work on. But for those reasons it is essential. We bought the "Math Made Meaningful" kit which has the rods in a sorting tray. It made it easier for my daughter at the beginning before she knew what each color rod stood for. Also, the kit came with some fun activity cards which we used to get comfortable with the rods before we started on the workbooks. The card activities are like games and even my 3 yo enjoyed many of those. I bought the kit through Rainbow Resource. It was a really good deal and I was able to get the rods in wood instead of plastic, which we all prefer.
I bought the Lab Annotations, Orange book and Red Book, I only use the book and cuisinaire rods, and rarely those. DS does best with us just doing the worksheets how we see best and what makes sense to us...whatever works, my suggestion is to just get the books and rods, then decide if you really need the lab annotations, check out used curriculum sites to purchase if you decide you want them. Best of lUkc!
A friend didn't buy the Lab Annotations and eventually gave up on Miquon because she couldn't figure out what some of the worksheets were about (this seems to be the most true in the orange book, maybe because you sort of get the hang of it after awhile). I once saw a suggestion that if you're on a tight budget you could get ONLY the lab Annotations since they have tiny little copies of the worksheets -- you could make up your own worksheets, then. But, really, the workbooks are pretty cheap compared to the amount of time of making all of those worksheets.

Sometimes dd just goes through and does all of the pages that look interesting. I like having more than 1 level on hand for that reason.
We're currently about 1/2 way through the yellow book (but taking a break from Miquon to do a bit more geometry and probability).
When we started, I ordered all the books (I knew it was a system that would work for us and I got a price discount on the full set), the rods, and the lab annotations. Somewhere during our last move, the lab annotations got misplaced and I have yet to find it. We were in the blue book at that point.

I guess that is my way of saying that if \$\$ is tight, you can definitely hold of on getting it. It is a nice security blanket when you first get started--especially if you don't feel confident in your math skills. It has a lot of activities for getting kids really involved in the topic, but it isn't a "teacher's manual" in the sense that it really explains what is going on in each and every sheet.

Miquon has just about always 'made sense' to me--I could see where they were going with the concepts and understood the sheets enough to explain them to ds.

If you do hold off on ordering it, make sure you subscribe to the Miquon-KeyTo Yahoo group--they are WONDERFUL at answering any questions you might have about specific pages or approaches to topics.

Just my .02

Lauren
Do you have a link to that group?
Wow! I didn't know there was a Yahoo group for Miquon...although, heaven knows there's a Yahoo group for everything else under the sun, so I should've guessed it. Although I adore Miquon and think it's fun dd just doesn't "click" with it. Maybe the group archives will have some tips for presentation that would work for her.
Here ya go

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/miquon-key/

They are also very supportive of combining Singapore Math with Miquon. It seems like a lot of families use both, although so far we've just used Miquon

Lauren
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