Thursday, September 6, 2012

Schoolhouse Review: Math 911


Professor Martin Weissman has been teaching Mathematics for 50 years.  Passionate about the subject, he desires to help students overcome their fear of Mathematics and to master it.  In his years of teaching, he felt that students needed fewer explanatory textbooks and more illustrative examples to help them understand how to do higher math problems.  To that end, he developed the Math911 tutorial software.


The Math911 tutorial software download generates problems for students to solve in Introductory Algebra, Intermediate Algebra, College Algebra, Statistics, Trigonometry, and Pre-Calculus.  No answers are marked "wrong."  The student must get a certain number of problems "correct" to prove mastery and move to the next level.  If the student does not understand how to do the problem, he may click on a button for step-by-step instructions to see the problem being solved.  He may follow these step-by-step instructions for as many problems as necessary to understand the process.  Professor Weissman wanted to give students practice, practice, practice in all types and variations of problems.


I used the Introductory Algebra course over the summer with my son who is starting 9th Grade and Algebra I this fall.  There were a lot of things we liked about the program.  By continually generating problems, the program provides my son with all the practice he needs, giving him immediate feedback and step-by-step instructions when he needs them, enabling him to master the concepts and saving me a lot of time and effort grading problems done on paper.  Some PDF files that function as a textbook and explain the concepts can be downloaded free from the Math911 website for the Introductory Algebra course ONLY.  I feel confident that my son is now ready for Algebra I/Intermediate Algebra this fall.

Update:  This is what I get for trying to post a review early - there is more information to cover!!  I realized in a recent email from Professor Weissman that "Introductory Algebra" is Algebra I, and "Intermediate Algebra" is Algebra II.  I was thinking that "Introductory Algebra" was like Pre-Algebra, and since I've never taught Algebra before, I didn't realize the things we were covering were the things I would find in an Algebra I program.  What this means is that my son is almost through Algebra I now and will soon be ready for Algebra II.  How exciting!!  :-)

We will continue to use this program for advanced drilling, but not for our main curriculum, because the remaining classes do not contain any kind of textbook instruction.  Professor Weissman - who answers emails quickly, is extremely helpful, and seems like he is probably a very good teacher to me - explained to me that he feels that students do not need the textbook instruction nearly as much as they need to see the step-by-step problem solutions, and that he feels this program is adequate as a full course curriculum for high school Math.  I have a feeling (please forgive me if it seems I am speculating too much) that his students probably do fine with this method, since they have him to explain the mathematical concepts to them.  For many of us homeschool moms, however, it can be a bit intimidating to explain higher math concepts on our own (or, you know, just google them!), and we feel more comfortable with a textbook curriculum.

To be honest, for the price he is offering the Math911 curriculum, I can afford both, and I will gladly continue to use the Math911 program along with our other curriculum, probably all the way through high school.  It is a valuable tool, and Professor Weissman is currently offering it for a fabulous value.

The complete Math911 program is available at for the discounted price of $49.95.  That includes all the subjects listed above.  As a special back-to-school offer, you may try a free download of the Introductory Algebra course from the website.  Tech support is always free.  The age range is 12 and up, or any student who is ready for Introductory Algebra.  The program is downloadable and works on PC, but not Mac systems.

For a VERY limited time, there is a special back-to-school coupon code on Professor Weissman's website, taking another $40.00 off the price of a flash drive, so you can have this great tutorial software for only $9.95 plus shipping!  (Note that if you choose the download option, there is no shipping, but the coupon code is only for the flash drive.)  The advantages to having the program on a flash drive are that you may then use it on any PC computer in your home, or even at the library or elsewhere.

Click below to see how other Crew Members used this product, and how they liked it for various Math levels:

Disclaimer:  I received a free copy of the full Math911 curriculum download in exchange for a fair review.  No other compensation was given, and all opinions are my own.

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