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CTC Math - Full Year Subscription Review by Jennifer Smeltser


Math can be a challenging subject to cover in school. It is difficult enough when the student does not understand the presented concepts. If the parent also has difficulty in understanding what the child is supposed to learn, teaching the material well is definitely out of the question. Often, this scenario leads to a lost opportunity of the student loving math. Fortunately, the experience with math does not have to result in that manner.

CTCMath is a comprehensive online, user-friendly and interactive math curriculum for kindergarten through high school students. It has complete math curriculum courses for kindergarten through eighth grade. After the eighth grade, students may use the program, with the algebra 1, pre-calculus, calculus, algebra II, geometry and trigonometry courses, as a supplement.

The program was created by Australian math teacher Patrick Murray who is a homeschool father of 10 children. CTCMath is the result of Murray’s more than 30 years of experience teaching math. The lessons are presented in a video format with Murray as the instructor and the voice behind the lessons of the program. Along with his accent, you occasionally hear a reference to an Australian term, but that does not hinder understanding.

Since the program is online, all you need is Internet access and a computer or any iOS device to effectively use the program. CTCMath learning may easily be used by your child wherever they go; away from the desk, in the car and also while traveling. While listening to and watching the instruction, you see Murray’s experience comes through. The lessons are specific to topic, thorough in explanation, but concise in content. Having a personal tutor (Patrick Murray) allows the parent to step back from teaching and put the task in capable hands.

There are a number of ways CTCMath may be used. Students may begin by taking a diagnostic test, which will help them with grade level and competency placement in the program. This is especially helpful for a student who is using the program as a full curriculum. They may also start instruction in a math area of new instruction or in one where they may need additional practice. Having access to all of the courses allows the student to begin in any preferred area.

There are the previously mentioned 16 offered courses. Each course has streams (different math areas of study), which are broken down into topics within those areas. Because math is very specific, those topics are broken down even further to provide comprehensive lessons for the student.

Students are able to watch the video tutorials and complete the lessons online. The tutorials and the lessons are interactive, colorful in presentation and brief, three to five minutes long. Once your child completes the lessons, they receive immediate feedback as to their performance. CTCMath allows the student to complete a lesson more than once to earn a higher score. The lessons may also be printed for offline work. Students are rewarded on a bronze, silver, gold or platinum level, which motivates them to try harder. Certificates of completion are also able to be printed for your child once they complete a topic in a stream. The certificates proved to be a great motivator for my nine-year-old.

Student work is graded and scored for the lessons, quizzes and tests they take. Parents may select to have weekly progress reports e-mailed to them. They are able to view the activities of their child (ex: when they logged in, the lessons they completed, the grade they received, etc.). Parents may even create and assign lesson plans that are specifically tailored to the needs of their child. The lessons may be scheduled for their child to complete and will appear on the student dashboard when they access their account.

If you have a child who struggles with math, CTCMath may be a great option for additional math practice to help improve their skills. If your child is proficient in math, they may be ready for a challenge. The instruction offered through CTCMath will give your child a good introduction to any math concept they are ready to tackle.

If you think math should only involve a pencil and paper, CTCMath may change your view. The instruction provided through CTCMath is not to be discounted. Adding computer-based instruction to offline learning gives your child a bit of variety in their education. Sometimes changing the way your child is taught is all that is needed to make an otherwise difficult subject, easier to grasp.

-Product review by Jennifer Smeltser, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, October, 2016